Protein shakes are usually associated with workouts and bodybuilding. But, there is a considerable amount of population out there, who drink protein shakes for the purpose of weight loss. Many studies have reported the role of protein shakes in weight loss while some suggest that protein shake alone does not work that efficiently against weight loss. Then there is a timing issue, like when is the best time to drink that magical protein shake for your weight loss journey? This article will tell you what protein shakes are, and when to drink them. Let’s go.
What are protein shakes?
Protein shakes, as the name suggests, are rich in protein. They also contain a few micronutrients as well to maximize their nutritional value. Protein shakes are made by mixing already available protein powders in the water or yogurt. Several protein shakes are available in the market depending on the dietary needs of everyone. One can choose from a wide range of protein powders, to make their own protein shakes. To make it more fulfilling, you can top or add the shake with your favorite but low-calorie toppings as well.
Types of protein powders
As mentioned above, there is a lot of variety of protein powders to choose from. Based on your preference, you can choose from animal or plant-based protein powder. Some find animal-based protein powders more fulfilling as it is made from a single type of protein; while others prefer plant-based protein powders, which contain other essential amino acids as well, along with proteins. The best part about these protein shakes is that they get absorbed quite easily into our bodies and stay there for a long time. The following protein powders have been found to be most common and fulfilling.
1. Dairy-based protein powders
- Whey protein
- Casein protein
2. Plant-based protein powders
- Soy protein
- Hemp protein
- Rice protein
- Pea protein
Does the protein shake help in weight loss?
YES, they do. Proteins are known to regulate the hormone ghrelin, another name for which is the hunger hormone. Intake of protein lowers the levels of ghrelin in our blood, which does not make us feel hungry for plenty of time. Other than that, proteins increase the thermic activity in our system. Which as a result takes a lot of time to digest food, during which a number of calories are burnt. But, not alone. Though protein shakes are reported to affect our metabolism, muscle mass, and appetite. Protein shakes do keep the calories in check by keeping our hunger satisfied most of the time and by improving our metabolism. But if you won’t incorporate healthy food like fruits in your diet, mere calorie-burning won’t do the job of losing weight. Also, it is necessary to add workouts to your daily routine.
If you need to rely on protein shakes for weight loss, you’ll have to choose its ingredients wisely. If you are adding sugar and fat-containing ingredients, then you’ll most likely end up gaining more weight, rather than losing it. If you add ingredients, high in nutritional value but low in calories, while fulfilling the need for carbs, fibre and healthy fats-you’ll be able to burn more calories.
So, when is the best time to drink?
If your aim is to lose those extra pounds, then drinking protein shakes in the morning will be your best call. Why? Protein shakes are an energy booster and keep us full for a long time. If you consume it in the morning before or after your workout session, it’ll keep your hunger satisfied for a long long time, which means less or no unhealthy snacking. Looks like a good deal.
But if you want to add protein shakes as a part of your workout routine, you can always consume them pre-workout (if you need a lot of energy to perform high-intensity workouts) or post-workout (to compensate for the lost energy).
Few other benefits of protein shakes
Other than weight loss, protein shakes do offer some worthy benefits:
- Aid in the muscle growth
- Boost your metabolism
- Preserve muscle mass
- Satisfy the hunger for a long time
- Speed up recovery and healing process
Our muscles need protein to grow well, and more muscle means less fat-next you can figure, the weight loss or we can put it as weight management. Protein shakes, thus, are a good source of weight loss, if consumed in the morning. But pinning your hopes entirely on protein shakes won’t do the job. Adopting and following a healthy and active lifestyle is a must to do if you really want to stay in shape.
I look up to fitness as a lifestyle and love to pen down about it. I have 2 years of experience in content writing and I am here to share my research and knowledge on health and fitness.