Maybe you have a few pounds you want to lose or you want an easy way to maintain a healthier weight for the long-term. In any case, jumping into the world of nutritional supplements to lose weight with protein powder can sound great.
Protein powders like Tera's Whey Proteins can be used to create so many satisfying and yummy shake and smoothie recipes. And, a lot of people swear by using these recipes as meal replacements to drop the pounds. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind as a beginner looking to lose weight with protein powder.
First, Misconceptions to Avoid About Losing Weight with Protein Powder
It is a common misconception that all shakes made with protein powder can serve as a healthy meal replacement. While it is true that protein powder can be a nice addition to your weight loss plan, you do have to be careful about the products you pick and then how you use them when making meal-replacement shakes. You can create some delicious shakes for sure. However, even if you're adding ingredients good for your body, everything has to be balanced carefully so you don't end up with a calorie overload. Most meal replacement shakes should contain between 200 and 400 calories.
Additionally, going all-in with only protein shakes for breakfast lunch and dinner is not the best way to go about your weight loss plans. The Mayo Clinic gives some good advice about weight loss with protein shakes; use the shake to help reduce calorie consumption but not to replace every meal. Doing so can lead to burnout quickly, have you missing out on nutrients offered by whole foods, and may counteract your weight loss efforts in the end.
Macronutrients and Micronutrients for Your Protein Shake or Smoothie
The best meal replacement shake should yield you a substantial mix of macronutrients with a relatively low-calorie count. If this is not what you have after you've blended everything together, you can end up either drinking too many calories or not getting enough macronutrients to keep you feeling full. Your protein shakes should have roughly:
- At least 15 grams of protein
- At least 3 grams of fiber, but more is better
- 33 percent or more of the recommended intake of vitamins and minerals
Simply Tera’s Simply Pure Plain Whey Protein Powder boasts 22 grams of whey protein per serving and contains 9 essential amino acids for improved bodily function and health.
Carbs are something to go for too, even though it can sound counterintuitive to take in carbs when you're trying to lose weight with protein powder. However, simple carbohydrates help to sustain blood sugar levels and keep you feeling fuller for longer, especially when paired with lean protein.
Additionally, keep the sugar levels in check with your protein shakes; try to aim for 10 grams or less, but you can allow just a few grams more if you're using natural fruits in a shake. For example, if you like sweetening your shakes with a banana, the average banana has around 15 grams of sugar. You could get by with using the full banana because it is a natural sugar and offers a full list of micronutrients and 3 grams of fiber. As another alternative to adding sugar, try using a pre-sweetened protein powder. Simply Tera’s Simply Pure Bourbon Vanilla Whey Protein is lightly sweetened with organic stevia leaf extract and contains only 2-3 grams of sugar per serving.
Choose the Right Kind of Protein Powder for You and Your Dietary Needs
Protein powders are not all the same. Numerous varieties are out there, some better than others. And, protein powder can be derived from different sources, such as cow's milk, goat's milk, and plants. Each individual has different dietary needs and concerns, so it is best to get familiar with the different protein powders, what they have to offer, and whether you have any digestive issues to consider. For instance, some individuals may have a harder time digesting whey protein from cow's milk due to lactose intolerance. So, either a plant-based protein powder or a goat whey protein would be best. Likewise, someone following a vegan diet would no doubt prefer a plant-based protein powder.
One thing to note about whey protein, studies have shown that it can help you lose body fat in a number of different ways. Whey protein powder is satiating and can help reduce hunger. A study on high-protein diets has shown that protein makes you feel full for longer periods of time, allowing you to go longer between meals. Additionally, whey protein powder contains 9 essential amino acids to help the body break down food and repair body tissue. A study on whey protein diets has shown that whey protein can help with fat loss and help preserve lean muscle. Therefore, if your diet allows, a product such as Tera's Simply Pure Fair Trade Dark Chocolate Whey Protein can be an excellent option for weight loss purposes.
Build the Healthiest Smoothies and Shakes with Wise Ingredient Choices
If you really want to lose weight with protein powder, you'll want a plan that is easy to incorporate and easy to stick to. Diversity is key, so take your time to play around with some of the ingredients you could add to protein shakes to make them more flavorful, more filling, and more enjoyable. A few good ingredients to consider adding to your shakes made with protein powder include:
- Hemp seeds, chia seeds or milled flax for added fiber and Omega 3 fatty acids
- Spinach, kale, and broccoli are low-calorie options for added fiber and nutrients
- Almond butter, natural peanut butter, or avocados for healthy fats
- Raspberries, kiwi, strawberries and pumpkin for low-sugar sweetness and micronutrients