Types of Protein Powder

Half of us would have been to the gym at least once, or we would have heard the story of a gym freak who never fails to mention protein powder. It has become mandatory to reach your fitness goal. 

Though you maintain a well-balanced diet with a wow lifestyle, you may miss your protein somewhere, so a protein powder will be strictly recommended by your coach. Let’s decode the conversation topic!

Protein powder is made from both animal and plant products. Before knowing the content of a protein powder, have an understanding of the forms available in the market. There are three forms of protein powder available on the market. 

  • Protein concentrates: It consists of 60 – 80 % of the proteins, and the remaining are the fats and carbs. Usually, it is an extract of a whole protein by heat or enzymes.
  • Protein isolates: They have 90 – 95% protein. Protein isolates are additionally filtered protein concentrates.
  • Protein hydrolysates: On further heating, the bond between the amino acids is broken, and hydrolysates are formed, which are easily absorbed by our muscles as they raise the insulin level compared to other forms. 

6 Different Types of Protein Powders:

Protein powder is made from milk, egg, rice, soy, and peas. You could get even mixed plants protein powder if you needed. The following types are composed of the varieties as mentioned above.

  • Whey protein powder
  • Casein protein powder
  • Egg protein powder
  • Pea protein powder
  • Brown rice protein powder
  • Hemp protein powder

Avoid expired protein powder at any time to save your health.

Whey Protein Powder

Whey Protein Powder:

Whey is extracted in the process of making cheese, and it is the watery part of the curd. As it is made from milk, it is high in lactose. But, whey protein isolates lack lactose as they undergo added filtration process. 

Whey protein is easily soluble in water, and it can be digested easily by our body, but some peoples have an allergic reaction to milk, so it is better to avoid whey protein in those cases. It consists of most of the amino acids which are necessary for muscle repair. 

Whey protein powder sole fully helps athletes and bodybuilders. A study has mentioned that whey protein powder reduces the appetite and helps in reduced calorie intake. If you are willing to buy whey protein, then look for WPC labels, as mostly whey protein is available in whey protein concentrates form. These WPC will have additional flavors, as they taste bad. So, have an eagle eye for added sugars. 

Let’s decode the label of these protein powders:

  • When looking for a whey protein powder, look for protein % on the label; if it is 90 or less than 90, then it is WPC. 
  • Check the ingredients list, and know that the ingredients listed former will be in large quantities remaining are lactose and milk derivatives.
  • Avoid the Whey protein powder, which has added sugar in large quantities.
  • Don’t worry about added flavors; as whey concentrates taste bitter, flavors are added. 
  • It’s okay to have flavors sometimes but avoid scented ones.

How does whey protein work in our body?

As mentioned above, whey has many amino acids; leucine is one among them, which helps in toning the muscles. A toned body will be expected by the bodybuilders! It also promotes protein synthesis in the muscles.

Whey protein is rich in bioavailability compared to other protein powders. ( Bioavailability – the ability to absorb the proteins ). 

On average, a healthy human requires 0.8 – 1 gm/kg of protein intake in a day. This differs from activities; an athlete or a person who does heavy intensive workouts requires 1.5 – 2 gm/kg of protein, which is not attained in a regular diet.

Benefits of Whey Protein Powder:

  • Increases muscle growth: As we grow older, our muscle mass starts diminishing, and the intake of protein helps our muscles to be toned. Also, athletes and bodybuilders predominantly need high protein to grow and tone their muscles.
  • Fights allergic reaction: A study confirmed that infants who consume whey protein between 3 – 12 months develop resistance to some kind of allergies. 
  • Decreases the appetite: Protein is a whole macronutrient; it reduces appetite. Increased protein intake will reduce your cravings by 60%.
  • Supports exercises: We all know that exercising builds up muscle mass to an extent. A protein-rich diet incorporated with an intensive workout added to whey protein powder helps you to get well-built and toned muscles. 
  • It promotes the loss of fat.
  • Lowers cholesterol.
  • Boosts immunity.
  • Reduction of blood pressure.

Side Effects of Whey Protein Powder:

On a rough note, whey proteins cause digestive problems like bloating, indigestion, or diarrhea but not for everyone. If you are allergic to milk products, then you might undergo these situations.

Some people may also undergo nausea, severe thirst, headache, fatigue, or cramps. Sometimes people who are non–allergic to milk also suffer from these problems.

It is because they would have consumed the protein powder in large quantities. You might also get acne if you consistently take whey protein powder.

Who Should Avoid Whey Protein Powder?

Whey protein powder should be avoided by the people with the following conditions,

  • Renal disease
  • Gut disease
  • Cardiac patients should go with the minimal doses.
  • Calcium deficiency or any bone problem.

Facts about Whey Protein Powder:

  • 95% of the bodybuilders essentially use whey protein powder.
  • All the available facts are the result of one study, but most of the studies haven’t concluded. And there is a requirement to do more research on these whey protein powders.
  • If you are pregnant or feeding, then You must consult your doctor or coach for a clear suggestion. Because some studies and expert says whey protein is safe for pregnant women and some experts deny it. 

Casein Protein Powder:

Casein is also extracted from the milk. It is 80% of the milk, and the remaining is whey. Casein is slowly absorbed in the body because it turns into a gel form when it gets mixed with stomach acid. Usually, casein protein powder is drunk before going to bed. It reduces muscle protein breakdown.

Forms of casein protein powder:

  • Micellar casein
  • Casein hydrolysates

The difference between these two forms of casein protein powder is the former is digested slowly, whereas the latter is a pre-digested protein that is easily absorbed by the body. 

A scoop with 33 grams of casein protein powder contains 24 grams of protein. For instance, a person with 60 kg must have 2.5 scoops if leading a normal life; for a bodybuilder or an athlete, it goes to 4 scoops.

Why Does Casein Protein Powder Take Longer to Digest?

Casein is the final nutrient to get digested in your stomach. Also, it stays for a longer time in your body, unlike other nutrients.

In that case, it feeds all the body cells for a long time, even if you skip your food for hours.

Casein helps your body cells to synthesize proteins which prevent your body from breaking its own muscles to get protein. This is why casein is called anti-catabolic.

A study found that leucine, an amino acid of casein, stays for 7 hours even after ingestion. The reason for the slower ingestion of casein is the acid content of the stomach clots the casein.

Dosage of Casein Protein Powder:

After the basic understanding of casein protein powder, if you choose to go with it, then let’s know about the doses and best time to intake.

Most of the time, casein is recommended to take before your bed to prevent protein breakdown. Intaking casein protein powder at night increases muscle growth twice and burns triple the amount of fat.

Athletes and bodybuilders are recommended to take 1 or 2 scoops, which should contain 0.75 – 1.08 grams of casein protein powder according to their workout routine.

Benefits of Casein Protein Powder:

  • Muscle growth: As we have discussed earlier, the basic support of casein protein powder is to build muscles in our body.
  • Fat loss: It supports your weight loss journey by burning triple the amount of fat than usual. 
  • Reduced hunger: Casein turns into a gel, which makes it absorb slower. So if it stays for a long time, probably we will not be hungry at least often.
  • Rich in calcium: Casein is rich in calcium! So it also strengthens your bones and makes your risk lower with bone diseases.
  • Supports recovery: Generally, athletes and bodybuilders undergo intensive workout routines, which damages the muscle fiber. Casein supports the recovery of these muscle fibers in a short span.

Side Effects of Casein Protein Powder:

  • Intolerance: Intolerance becomes an unavoidable term if you go for casein protein powder, it is because some persons are intolerant to milk and milk proteins. So, before going with casein protein powder, confirm that you are not one among them.
  • Bloating
  • Wheezing
  • Anaphylaxis

Egg Protein Powder:

The egg is the major source of protein before all these modern protein sources. Egg white has all the proteins and nutrients required for a person to be healthy and fit.

A whole egg contains 6 grams of protein, whereas the powder form of 30 grams contains 14 grams. 

The egg has all the major materials, Vitamin B2, B12, Biotin, iron, selenium, magnesium, and whatnot.

Egg protein powder is 95% easily digested, whereas an egg as a whole is digested by 50%. Egg protein is obviously an animal protein. 

Also, it is a complete protein source and has all the essential amino acids. Intaking egg protein powder in the morning aids in weight loss, and prevents muscle protein breakdown.

Benefits of Egg Protein Powder:

  • Egg protein powder would be a lifesaver for dairy intolerant people who are looking for animal proteins. 
  • The egg is a great source of combined nutrients; it has everything in it, literally everything! For instance, it has vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B8, B9, B12, iron, proteins, magnesium, manganese, and selenium.
  • Very low in calories! If you are willing to consume whole eggs, then no problem; you do not need to worry about fat or calories. The egg has a less or negligible amount of fat or calories.
  • It promotes muscle growth, fastens muscle repair, and builds new proteins.
  • Egg protein powder supports weight loss by enhancing beta-oxidation.

Side Effects of Egg Protein Powder:

  • The egg has a high chance of salmonella invasion, which leads to stomach pain, diarrhea, and fever.
  • Avidin is the natural protein of an egg that binds with biotin and inactivates the benefits of biotin, which may lead to biotin deficiency. 

Doses to take:

Generally, doses vary from person to person according to their body build and workout routine.

On a rough scale, 30 grams of serving egg protein powder is safer to add to everyday routine.

It is recommended to take egg protein in the morning to obtain complete benefits.

Pea Protein Powder:

Pea protein powder, Yes! It is made from yellow peas. Actually, this is a lifesaver for vegans, especially bodybuilders. Usually, it is mixed with protein smoothies for extra protein. 

Pea protein powder mimics animal protein powder in all aspects, including texture, looks, nutritional values, etc. I don’t know about the taste, as I haven’t tried them personally. Pea proteins are hypoallergenic, which means it suits everyone. This is the flagship feature of pea protein. It is made by isolating the protein from the natural peas. As we know, it is vegan, gluten-free, and mild flavored. 

Available forms: 

  • Pea protein isolates: It is just the combination of proteins of pea and amino acids. Most of the pea protein powder you come across would be in this form.
  • Pea protein concentrates: If you are looking for a protein powder to gain weight, this would be the most suitable option. It is less in proteins compared to pea protein isolates and more in carbs.
  • Textured pea protein: This would be a piece of extra information. You’ll never come across this, and it is not used as a protein powder.

Nutritional Benefits:

Pea proteins are high-end protein sources, and they have all the essential amino acids needed by the body.

Especially arginine, which helps in increased blood circulation and prevents heart diseases to an extent. It also has leucine, which promotes muscle growth.

Pea proteins are rich in iron. You will find 5 – 7.5 mg of iron in every scoop of pea protein powder.

When it is mixed with vitamin c rich foods, iron absorption in your body will be raised to 67%. 

Doses to Intake:

  • It is important to know about the doses, especially in pea protein powders.
  • Because the increase in dose will also increase sodium levels in your body.
  • 0.73 grams of pea protein powder per 1.5 kg weight is the safer dose to intake every day.
  • Most people love to consume pea protein powder with their smoothies.

Benefits of Pea Protein Powder:

  • Muscle growth: Muscle growth is a common feature of all protein powders; pea protein is not an exception. Research conducted between pea protein powder consumers and whey protein powder consumers resulted in the same result of muscle growth. So, pea protein powder is in no way inferior to dairy proteins.
  • It gives you a feeling of fullness, which will make you eat less further.
  • Pea protein improves the health of your heart and reduces the risk of heart diseases in the future.
  • A study proved that pea protein powder lowers the bold pressure.
  • Unlike animal protein powders, pea protein powder is easily digestible.

Side Effects of Pea Protein Powder:

  • Unlike other protein powders, pea protein has very few downfalls.
  • One among them is that if a person is restricted from adding sodium to their diet, then it is better for them to eliminate pea protein from their diet.
  • Because pea protein powder is rich in sodium, another point is pea proteins are not bioavailable.

Plant-Based Protein Powder:

We have seen oodles of information on protein powders above, so let’s quick it with the major things you must know. Plats proteins are greatly replaceable with dairy protein powders. A few people are allergic to milk products; if you are one, then your go-to protein powder is plant protein powder. Plant protein powders available in the market are,

  • Soy protein
  • Pea protein
  • Brown rice protein
  • Hemp protein

Benefits of Plant-Based Protein Powder:

  • Plant-based protein powder is rich in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids.
  • They have high fiber content, which is not available in dairy protein powders.
  • Digestion is quicker in plant protein powders, whereas dairy protein powders take more time to digest.
  • As it is rich in antioxidants, plant protein powders lower the cholesterol level of the body.


  • It is expensive compared to dairy protein powders. Also, they do not have a complete protein source.
  • Some plant proteins have high carbohydrates in them.
  • Unlike dairy protein powders, they are hard to mix and blend.

Brown Rice Protein Powder:

This heading will actually be a decoding one! To our basic understanding, rice is rich in starch and carbohydrates and very few other nutrients.

But, actually not! Brown rice is rich in carbs and protein. The brown rice protein powder contains 76% of proteins and 36% essential amino acids.

Are you searching for carbs percent? Carbs will be eliminated in the making process of brown rice protein powder.

Brown rice protein powder is not a complete protein source as it lacks lysine, so it is better if you consume it with collagen, which contains lysine.

It is gluten-free and hypoallergenic. It increases lean body mass, improves the loss of fat, promotes skeletal muscle growth, and strengthens the core.

Benefits of Brown Rice Protein Powder:

  • It promotes muscle repair and fastens muscle recovery.
  • Yeah, it is vegan and hypoallergenic.
  • Brown rice protein powder is highly bioavailable, so you’ll never face any digestive issues like bloating.
  • It speeds up the metabolism and reduces food intake in order to support your weight loss journey.
  • Brown rice also improves the health of your organs like kidneys, lungs, and heart.
  • Enhances detoxification process.
  • As it is rich in antioxidants, it serves as anti-diabetic and anti-cholesterol.

Side Effects of Brown Rice Protein Powder:

  • Brown rice may be contaminated with heavy metals, i.e., arsenic, which in the long term will be a slow poison.
  • Fertilizers are used to grow rice, and this adds up the toxicity level.
  • In the making process of brown rice protein powder, only carbs are removed, and other components are retained. 

Dose to Intake:

If you are a beginner at protein powder or if you are willing to switch, consult your coach and nutritionist before choosing your protein powder.

30 grams of brown rice protein powder will be sufficient for your routine. You can either mix it up with smoothies or even with water.

Hemp Protein Powder:

Hemp is obtained from the cannabis plant. Don’t worry about its THC and psychoactive reaction! Hemp has very few or negligible effects, unlike marijuana.

By the way, it is an excellent medicinal plant if used properly. It is rich in protein, fibre, and medical properties. You can consume hemp in powder form by crushing its seeds or in milk.

Nutritional benefits:

One scoop of hemp protein powder contains 113 calories, 12.6 grams of proteins, 4.8 grams of fibre, and 7 grams of carbs. It is a complete protein, and it has all nine essential amino acids.

It is slowly absorbed by the body, which gives you a full feeling. But it has less biological value when compared to whey.

Benefits of Hemp Protein Powder:

  • If you are looking to reduce your meat intake, then you can start with adding hemp to your diet. It boosts your metabolism.
  • It contains all the amino acids to repair your muscles and regulate your brain functions.
  • It is rich in omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, which will maintain and improves the health of your heart.
  • It lowers the risk of heart attack, cholesterol, and blood pressure.
  • Hemp is a perfect source of iron, magnesium, and manganese.

Side Effects of Hemp Protein Powder:

  • There is a high possibility of consuming THC when taking hemp.
  • THC is responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis.
  • So make sure your hemp protein powder has THC free label on it.
  • This protein powder is not regulated by FDA. You may face digestive issues like constipation, gas, diarrhea, or bloating if the doses are large.
  • If you are on medication, then speak with your doctor before adding hemp, it is highly reactive, and it can combine with medicines.

Dose to Intake:

It is safe to intake 3 tablespoons or 30 grams of hemp protein powder daily. You can blend it with smoothies or yogurt, or you can even consume whole seeds.

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