Our bodies need protein to help repair cells and make new ones. There are over 10,000 different kinds of the nutrient, and it’s found in every single cell in the human body. Aside from basic biological needs, athletes require higher doses of protein to help supplement the increased strain on their muscles. From resistance training to running to yoga, protein supplementation, especially if you have a hard time ingesting enough from your normal diet, is often a good idea.
The most common protein on the market a dairy derivative called whey. Usually, in powder form, whey is a byproduct of the cheese-making process and is one of the two proteins found in milk. Though directly pulled from cow’s milk, it’s relatively low in lactose content.
At moderate doses, whey doesn’t carry too many observable side effects. High doses could include nausea or headaches, but this is not necessarily a result of whey’s properties as much as it is a result of overconsumption.
However, if you’re allergic to milk you could also be allergic to whey specifically. There have also been substantial reports of acne from whey consumption.
The good thing is that there’s plenty of protein alternatives, though they may not be as common. After all, protein is not just found in animal products. Tofu, edamame, lentils, peanuts, and quinoa all carry high doses of protein.
It may not come as a surprise that hemp is another great source of plant protein. Incredibly nutrient-rich and less processed than other powders, it’s an intriguing alternative. Like whey, hemp protein is also considered “complete”, meaning that it has all 9 essential amino acids. It may be a tad less protein-dense than whey, but that can easily be mitigated by simply using more. Plus, he,p protein comes high in omega-3 fatty acids that boost heart and brain health.
Hemp protein is great for everybody, but especially those who either choose to not or cannot ingest animal products like dairy. Give it a go!