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Plant-based Protein Powders

 Plant-Based Protein Powders

With summer just around the corner I know many of you have been getting into shape. With all that hard work taking place in the gym, a few of you have been requesting my protein raw ball recipe. So here you go, the recipe is finally up as promised. These are really meant to be a snack; a tasty little morsel that fills you up, satisfies those sweet cravings and is completely raw, vegan and refined sugar free.

The recipe can be found here or under the 'Snack' section under 'Recipes', but before you head over to the recipe stick around and find out how you can also improve your health this summer, by making the simple switch to a plant protein.

There's been a definite shift over the past years when it comes to our appearances; men have moved away from skinny jeans (thank God) to growing muscles and beards. It's not just the men; women have ditched their fear of heavy weights and 'strong' has become the new 'skinny' - just hop onto Instagram and you'll see the evidence for yourself. Whilst the increase in people passionate about exercising is great, there's a few nasty behaviours such as throwing back the protein shakes and eating protein loaded bars that can leave your health in turmoil. It doesn't have to be like that though; you can have your muscles and good health by making the switch to a plant-based protein.

How much protein?

So do you know how much protein you actually need a day? For those of you concerned with muscle growth there's a simple way to workout what your daily protein needs are:

  • If you're exercising for 1 hour or more, 5 or more days a week you need 0.55g of protein per pound of your weight
  • If you're exercising for 45 minutes a day, 3-4 days a week you need 0.45g of protein per pound of your weight

Now you know how much you need, you can simply reach your required intake through good nutrition and supplementation if needed.  A good plant protein contains between 13g -20g of protein per serving, whilst a whey protein contains between 20g -25g of protein per serving. So yes there is a difference, but from my experience and research the muscle growth you achieve through plant protein powders is leaner and easier to maintain - meaning any missed gym sessions will be noticed less. Plus if you're still concerned about your protein intake just double the serve of plant protein and you'll still avoid some of those nasty side effects whey protein gives you!

What are the health benefits?

If you're experiencing digestion issues, troubled skin or putrid smelling farts it's most likely down to your whey protein.

Whey protein is the bi-product of cheese making; it's the waste they don't want to waste. It's usually made up of more than 50% lactose, and the majority of us have some trouble digesting lactose. This is because most of us stop producing lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose, after the age of 5 years old. So when you gulp down that whey protein shake it hits your digestive system as undigested sugars and starts to ferment in your gut. This is what causes your digestive issues such as bloating and those familiar 'protein farts' you're probably experiencing. It's totally unnecessary! Make the switch and your digestion will thank you (your partner will thank you too). 

Secondly, if you're suffering from bad skin on your face or your back get off the whey protein now. In short, whey protein contains androgens, the hormone that stimulates muscle growth; unfortunately it also stimulates sebum (oil) production as well as accelerated cell growth thus resulting in acne. By consuming whey protein you're essentially giving yourself hormonal acne! Lay off the whey and dairy, and your skin will most likely clear up pretty quickly.

So what protein should you switch to?

All the proteins listed below contain all the essential amino acids and non-essential need for recovery and building muscle. They are gluten free, non-GMO and free from the chemicals, acids and solvents traditionally used to extract protein. Here is a quick macronutrient breakdown of three popular plant proteins:

Hemp

120 calories; 4g fat; 7g carbs; 13g protein per 30g serving

Brown rice 

80 calories; 0g fat; 4g carbs; 17g protein per 21g serving

Pea

70 calories; 0.3g fat; 0g carbs; 20g protein per 25g serving

Lastly AVOID soy protein! Whilst soy has a high protein content the extraction process of that protein, like with whey protein, makes it toxic. Additionally the phytoestrogens in soy can lead to some of the same nasty side effects as whey protein.

So there you have it, a few good reasons to make the switch today. Let me know how you get on or if you have any more questions. Don't forget to check out my protein raw ball recipe here.