Whey vs. Hemp Protein: Which is Best for You?
Getting adequate amounts of dietary protein is important because the body does not make this essential nutrient or store it.
Fortunately, there are many food sources that offer a rich of protein.
Whey and hemp powders are popular choices among dieters trying to supplement their dietary intake of protein. Both protein sources provide all the essential amino acids and you can use them as your base ingredient for milkshakes.
So, between whey and hemp, which one provides the best nutritional value?
In order to find an answer to this question, first it is important that you understand some basic facts about whey and hemp protein powders.
Facts on Whey Protein
Whey is a by-product of cheese production.
After extraction, it goes through a drying process. This turns whey into powder form for supplementation in the diet. While some formulations might contain a significant amount of lactose and fat, whey protein isolate is the purest form comprising of 90-95% protein by weight.
Whey is mostly rich in beta-albumin and alpha-lactalbumin proteins.
That said; however, this protein powder has all the essential amino acids required for growth. According to nutritional data from the U.S Department of Agriculture, one scoop of 100g whey protein isolate contains up to 359 calories and 58.14g of protein.
What You Need to Know About Hemp Protein
Hemp protein comes from a plant based source.
The powder is derived from ground hemp seeds that contain rich amounts of albumin and edestin, two forms of protein that digest easily.
Depending on your chosen brand, hemp powder can contain 25-30% of protein in weight.
Over 70% of hemp protein extract contains healthy polyunsaturated fats.
In fact, hemp protein is rich in both Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids. It is also a good source of B vitamins and dietary fiber. One serving of unflavored Foods Alive hemp protein will supply your body with 50g of protein and up to 393kcal.
Hemp protein boasts an impressive amino acid profile that matches that of egg whites, and soy.
It has all the essential branched chain amino amino acids required for growth but has particularly high levels of arginine.
Whey vs. Hemp Protein: Which is Best for You?
Now that you know the basic nutritional facts of whey and hemp proteins, it is easy to choose the protein source that that is best for you.
Whether you choose to go for hemp or whey protein powder is entirely a matter of preference. For instance, hemp makes a great protein source for dieters on a vegan diet given that is sourced from plants.
If quality of protein is a major concern, you should be glad to know that both of these food sources will inject your body with all the essential amino acids it needs for tissue repair and growth.
When quantity of protein is a priority, it is best to go with whey since it blows out hemp ounce for ounce in protein content.
If you want your protein supplements to provide other nutrients, hemp makes the better choice thanks to its rich content of essential fatty acids, B vitamins and fiber.
So, in conclusion, remember that the best protein source between whey and hemp powders ultimately boils down to your dietary preferences.
Can You Eat Too Much Protein If You’re Trying to Lose Weight?
You have probably heard that increasing your protein intake can help lead to weight loss. This is because protein offers several benefits that help you lose fat naturally.
For starters, protein is very satiating and tends to curb cravings while reducing the desire for snacking. Therefore, with a high protein diet, you will automatically eat less even when you are not consciously restricting calorie intake.
Additionally, protein has a higher “Thermic Effect of Food” (TEF) than other foods.
This simply means that the body requires a whole lot more energy to process protein than it does to digest other foods like carbohydrates.
Thanks to this little benefit, eating high amounts of protein will see you burn calories while simply digesting and metabolizing the food and also enjoy a boosted metabolism that will make you burn more calories around the clock even when you are not very active.
Protein also repairs and builds muscles. This benefit comes in handy if you are pairing a high protein diet with regular resistance exercises.
You will recover much faster from your workouts and therefore be able to exercise more frequently and more intensely.
What’s more, increased muscle will raise your resting metabolic rate, hence allowing the body to burn more fat after workouts.
With all these benefits, you would think that the more protein you eat the higher your weight loss would be. Well, not exactly.
There reaches a point where a high protein diet becomes too much. And, eating too much protein can be harmful to a weight loss plan. Here are the reasons why.
Reason One: Protein Has Calories
Despite the benefits, protein foods also have calories.
On average, protein contains 4 calories per gram. Due to the present calories, eating too much protein will cause an increase in calorie intake. This increase in turn can work to lower your calorie deficit and thus cause weight gain.
Reason Two: Liver Changes Excess Protein into Fat
During metabolism, protein is broken down into amino acids and ammonia.
Through the lining of the small intestines, the required amino acids are absorbed into the bloodstream where they are used to build up protein stores. The excess amino acids are then converted into glucose, which the body uses for energy.
However, when one has eaten much more protein than the body needs, the glucose becomes more than what the cells require thus leaving no space for it to be stored as glycogen in the muscles or liver.
When this happens, the liver then converts the excess glucose into fat, which is ultimately deposited at the body’s fat stores.
Therefore, if you eat too much protein on a continuous basis, your body’s fat storage will expand over time causing an increase in weight.
How Much Protein Is Too Much?
So, how do know if your daily protein intake has reached the point of being too much?
Well, experts recommend a daily intake of between 0.5 -1.0 grams of protein per pound of your body weight. Of course, when trying to lose weight, protein intake will be on the lower side.
Alternatively, you can find out how much protein to consume by factoring your intake of this macro-nutrient into your calorie count. A safe number is keeping your protein consumption at 25 -30% of your total calorie intake.
The bottom line is that increasing your protein intake can help you get in good shape.
However, do not go crazy and overdo it. Just like other foods, smart dieting comes down to portion control. Stick to the recommended protein intake and you will be okay.
It is also a good idea to exercise regularly, as that will allow you to reap the full benefits that a protein-rich diet has on weight loss.