Your body needs protein to support muscle growth and maintain good physical health. But, there are still a lot of questions about protein powder and its place in the modern diet. Many of these misconceptions come from images of the 90s, where primitive formulations of chalky shakes were reserved for bodybuilders with frosted tips and stringy tank tops. Luckily, a lot has changed since then. Protein powder is beneficial for athletes and non-athletes alike. Here are a few of the most common protein powder misconceptions, and the truth behind them.
1 - Protein Powder Will Make You too Muscular
This is a common concern among women, and ironically, a common complaint among men. Yes, protein (and protein powder) is essential for the growth and maintenance of muscle tissue, but it is not a magic pill. If putting on large amounts of muscle were easy, we’d all be walking around looking like Zac Efron or Arnold Schwarzenegger (or Nicki Minaj for our booty-building friends). The truth is, protein powder helps supplement your diet to ensure you are meeting your macro-nutrient requirements, and by doing so, provides your body with the tools it needs to recover and grow.
2 - Protein Powder Will Make You Fat
Protein powder is food, and like any food, it will not make you fat on its own. Your body requires a certain amount of energy to support its essential functions and get you through your day. If you consume more energy than your body requires, your body will store the excess in the form of muscle or fat. However, if you consume a sufficient amount of protein and perform regular resistance training, you are more likely to convert this excess energy into muscle. Plus, protein powder is a relatively low-calorie food. A scoop of Suppy whey protein only has 127 calories, which is less than most people’s morning latte.
3 - You Need to Consume Protein Immediately After a Workout
Scientists say that consuming 20-30 grams of protein after a workout will increase amino acid delivery and put the body into a muscle-building state. Gym bros say that the ‘anabolic window’ closes 30 minutes after you finish your last set. The truth is that your body needs nutrients to grow, and your body is most primed for growth immediately following a workout. However, this growth-ready state lasts for much longer than people think. Digestion can take upwards of 4 hours, so unless you’re training first thing in the morning, your body is likely already working on delivering fuel to your muscles. Try to consume protein after each workout, but don’t skip your training if you can’t find a shaker.
4 - Protein Powder is Not Meant for Endurance Athletes
Every cell in your body is made up of proteins. Even your hair and your toe-nails depend on protein to grow. So, while you might not have any intention of putting on superhuman strength or Hulk-like size, your body still needs protein to perform its essential functions. And, endurance athletes require much more protein than what’s recommended for an average person. Low protein levels weaken the immune system and result in longer recovery times. So, if you want to be a successful athlete and stay healthy, it’s important to meet your body’s protein requirements.
5 - Your Body Can Only Digest 20 Grams of Protein at a Time
Depending on who you talk to, you may have heard that your body can only process 20-30 grams of protein at one time. While this amount of protein is likely enough for your body to realize muscle-building benefits, any extra protein you consume will not go to waste. Your body is an efficient machine and will look to utilize all of the nutrients it can. This explains why our ancestors were able to survive off of infrequent, meat-based meals. Plus, digestion is a process, so just because you consume a chicken breast with 50 grams of protein, does not mean that your body will be able to make all of the nutrients available to your muscles at once.
7 - It Tastes Gross
No, it doesn’t - trust us. The days of chalk-chugging muscle men in tank tops are long gone. Shake up some Suppy whey and let us know what you think.