From the depths of revision I am writing a post on protein powder as I get asked about it a lot! And there are MANY misconceptions when it comes to protein powder, weight gain, 'bulking' etc. So I am going to help set them straight!
So I will begin by saying YES I do use protein powder! These are the exact products I currently use:
I am so so happy with the taste & textures of all of these flavours and I can't wait to try more! The vanilla is amazing for using in cooking and they all taste amazing mixed with water or milk. Per 29g scoop there is 24g of protein (amazing) 1.6g carbohydrate (again, amazing) 1.2g sugar and 1g of fat with 18 of your essential and non essential amino acids! I might also add here that even though my hair already grows extremely fast, since using whey protein it has started to thicken out and grow even faster!
So I get asked A LOT "If I use protein powder will I put on weight?", "If I use protein powder will I get fat?" and "If I use protein powder will I get really bulky?" - and the answer is no to all of the above! I will now explain why :)...
Whey Protein helps REDUCE fat and PRESERVE muscle
- Contrary to popular belief amongst us females, whey protein actually does the opposite to what we seem to think. Because of the high protein and low sugar and carbohydrate content, whey protein actually aids fat loss and promotes lean muscle gain as the body burns more energy breaking down protein and therefore burns more calories! Increased lean muscle also means that your body burns more calories at resting rate to maintain it. The addition of lean muscle may lead to a 'weight-gain' on the scales as muscle weighs 3x more than fat, BUT it occupies a smaller area in the body comparatively to fat, therefore you will appear tighter, healthier and more 'toned'. (I have a HUGE vendetta against using weighing scales to measure progress with many reasons, but I will brush on that topic at another time!)
Whey Protein helps rebuild, repair and reduce soreness in the muscles after a workout
- It is most beneficial to have whey protein after working out (especially after heavy lifting) as the body absorbs it very efficiently and therefore it works very quickly. Protein in general is essential for ALL growth, rebuild and repair in the body, and if you are looking to tone-up or gain lean muscle, you will probably need an extra source of protein so that your body is working at an optimum level, and whey powder is perfect for this! Because it repairs the muscles after a workout, it means that you don't have to skip workouts due to extreme muscle soreness and you don't feel as lathargic afterwards (although you still will if you go hard enough :)!).
There are SO many other benefits which I am not going to mention, but just google it and you'll see for yourself! Now the last FAQ about looking 'bulky' is a HUGE common misconception amongst us females, and it goes hand-in-hand with women's fear of using heavy weights. This is ANOTHER post for another day BUT I will finish with the fact that women have no where near enough testosterone to become 'bulky', and it would be extremely difficult to do so. What I THINK the reason is for women thinking they will get bulky or are bulky is because they need to lose fat in order to be able to see more muscle definition without the layer hiding it, which is where the quote "abs are made in the kitchen" comes from - in order to SEE your abdominal muscles (or other muscles), you need to lose fat in order to show them off. They will have been there the whole time but until your body fat is lower, you can't see them and you will appear softer!
Anyway, I hope this is slightly coherent and you all understand the information! All of it is off the top of my head so there may be mistakes, and it's from my own research :)