When you’re working to shave off pounds, you need to slash your calorie intake without sacrificing nutrition. Protein shakes are a great way to do exactly that. But, what ingredients are most effective and what protein blend will work best for you? For optimal weight loss is your goal, look for products that have approximately 25 grams of protein and no more than 200 calories per serving. After that, choose a protein blend that meets your personal nutrition and dietary needs. Here are some guidelines:
Being vegetarian or vegan doesn’t nix you from the protein game. In fact, if you don’t eat meat, it is especially important to make sure you are getting your recommended daily intake. Look for a plant-based protein product with a complete amino acid profile that is loaded with essential vitamins and nutrients—particularly fiber, which will help satisfy your hunger and keep you feeling fuller for longer.
If your energy levels are lagging and you feel like your metabolism could use a jolt, look for a protein product that has 100 milligrams of caffeine—the same amount of caffeine in one cup of coffee. The extra energy gets you and your metabolism moving.
If you’re working to shed pounds and build lean muscle definition, look for a formula that combines whey protein isolate and a thermogenic blend to stimulate your metabolism and encourage calorie-burning. You might also look for a formula that has 10 grams of the branch-chain amino acid (BCAA) leucine, which plays a key role in supporting protein muscle synthesis.
Whether you’re trying to slim down or just eat healthier, a meal replacement protein shake will keep your calorie count down and one that is high in protein and fiber can help you feel fuller for longer in between meals, and potentially eat less. When you’re dieting, it’s important to supply your body with the recommended daily intake of vitamins and other essential nutrients. Look for a nutritionally balanced meal replacement protein shake to make sure you get in the essentials you need without the calories you don’t. A meal replacement shake with whey protein is a great option—it’s fast-absorbing and contains all nine of the essential amino acids you need.