Most people who workout have heard about protein shakes and supplements. Protein powders, available in whey, soy, casein protein and other forms, are rapidly gaining popularity as a supplementary form of nutrition. Are these nutritional supplements good for you? Read on to find out.
Protein supplements offer a quick and easy source of high-quality, wholesome protein. Here are some people who can benefit by them:
- Growing teenagers, who require more protein to fuel their workouts.
- Vegans and vegetarians, who lose out on a lot of non-vegetarian sources of protein like meat and eggs.
- People who are starting a new workout routine to build muscle, or those who are planning to intensify their weight training.
- Injured athletes, who may need additional amount of protein for healing.
However, just like every coin has two sides, protein supplements have drawbacks too. Let’s look at some of them:
- High doses can cause increased bowel movements, bloating, nausea, thirst, fatigue, reduced appetite and headache.
- Excess protein will not convert to muscle, but will be broken down for energy and thus can be hard on your liver and kidneys.
- It can be a source of extra calories that may cause unwanted weight gain.
- Many supplements also come packed with artificial flavoring and added sugar.
So before you reach out for that box of protein powder the next time think about these pros and cons. And always consult a nutritionist or physician before taking any supplement; maybe a healthy diet that is rich in protein is all you need for physical fitness.
Image courtesy: Sandstein (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Protein_shake.jpg)