The Top 5 Whey Protein Powders Reviewed
Protein is a vital macronutrient that should always be included in abundance in anyone’s diet. First of all, an ample amount of protein will help to ensure that you aren’t hungry for as long, and it helps with muscle repair. Of course, it’s also pretty important to make sure that you’re getting the right kind of protein too, and it’s important to make sure that your protein source is a healthy one.
Whey protein powder can be a great way to help incorporate protein into your daily diet – you can mix it in with other things such as eggs, milkshakes and smoothies for a light after the gym snack. There are a lot of Whey Protein powders on the market, however, so it can sometimes be tricky to know what will be the best choice for you. Thankfully, we’re here to help you find the best whey protein powders for you. Read on to find out about the best whey protein powders, along with a handy buyer’s guide to help you to narrow down your decision.
Best Whey Protein Powders
If your aim is to use protein powder to build muscle, then you may be well suited to Dymatize Iso-100. This is by far one of the best muscle building protein powders on the market because it’s made up primarily of hydrolyzed whey.
As we mention in our buying guide, hydrolyzed whey protein, which is also known as whey peptides, absorbs into your body much faster than any other form of whey. The difference here is somewhat miniscule for recreational athletes, but it’s definitely a big selling point in this product’s favor.
Like a lot of the other protein powders on this list, the Dymatize Iso-100 whey protein powder comes in a range of different flavors to suit your unique tastes. You can mix it in with other forms of whey too! People particularly love the gourmet chocolate flavor. The powder is also low in calories and carbs so it works quite well for keto. It should be mentioned however that some people have said that it’s a little bit expensive, so it may not be the best choice for those who are on a budget.
- Great taste
- Hydrolyzed whey protein for faster absorbency
- Ideal for muscle building
- A little expensive
- 5 lbs of Dymatize ISO100 Gourmet Chocolate Protein Powder (71 Servings)
- Scientifically proven, fast-digesting, hydrolyzed, 100% whey protein isolate
- 25 grams of protein, 5.5 grams of branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), & 2.7 grams of Leucine per serving
- Less than 1 gram of fat & sugar per serving
- Gluten free with less than 0.5g of Lactose
To start with, PrettyFit protein is a whey isolate powder that consists of less than a gram of carbs and fat in each serving. Ultimately, this means that it’s pretty low in calories, and it also doesn’t contain any soy. If you are worried about consuming phytoestrogens then this is perfect for you.
In addition, the powder does not contain any artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners. It’s also lactose free, and yet it still has five digestive enzymes in order to reduce stomach problems. The product does have a decent chocolate taste, but this is somewhat mild. Sure, it’ll be great with milk, but it’s not the best with water. On this account it may still not be suited to a lot of people, such as vegans and those who are lactose intolerant. Aside from this though, the powder is full of great nutrients so if that’s all that worries you then it’s a good choice.
- Nutrient dense
- No artificial additives
- Low in calories
- Taste is somewhat bland
- BUILD YOUR IDEAL BODY: Only 100 calories with 24g whey protein isolate, 0 sugars, <1g fat, 1g carbs. Keeps you feeling full for hours and curbs cravings while supporting your metabolism.
- TOP RATED TASTE: Our DELICIOUS protein is top-rated for taste and drinkability. Perfect for shakes on the go, smoothies and baking. Mixes easily in water, juice or your favorite milk/milk substitute.
- PREMIUM QUALITY: All-Natural 100% Non-GMO Cold-Processed Ultra Microfiltered Whey Protein Isolate with added digestive enzymes for improved absorption. Superior purity to whey concentrate.
- NO ARTIFICIAL ANYTHING: NO artificial sweeteners, gluten-free, 99%+ lactose free, hormone free, non-GMO, aspartame free
- EASILY DIGESTIBLE: NO Gluten, 99%+ lactose free, contains added digestive enzymes for easy digestion and to prevent gas/bloating
To start with, this is definitely a good choice for if you happen to be on a budget – even if you include the price of delivery it’s still pretty impressive. The company is actually one of the biggest suppliers of health supplements out there too, and that is because of their stellar reputation. The powder consists of 82% protein too.
Another great thing about this product is that it comes in a wide variety of different flavors. Are you a big fan of Apple Crumble – yes, you’re right, this is a flavor that they have! It also has slightly more normal flavors such as white chocolate. They also have unflavored protein too.
- Low in calories
- Doesn’t have isolate for faster absorption, so not quite as versatile as it could be
- Premium whey packed with 21g of protein per serving, for the everyday protein you need from a quality source. Vegetarian and gluten free.
- Ranked Grade A by independent tester Labdoor for both quality and value, Impact Whey Protein is officially certified as one of the best protein powders on the market.
- It provides your body with convenient, high-quality protein, which contributes to the growth and maintenance of muscle mass — making sure you’re getting the protein you need, each and every day.
- It also includes 3.6g of glutamine and all the essential amino acids, including 4.5g of BCAAs — these naturally occur in protein which helps to build and repair new muscle1 — so you’re always ready for the next session.
- With just 1.9g of fat, 1g of carbs, and at just 103 calories per serving, Impact Whey Protein is perfect for everyone, whatever your fitness goals.
The Muscle Pharm Combat Powder is designed to be used for those of us that often take part in high intensity workouts, and for those that want to keep their muscles fed for long periods of time. It’s an interesting blend that perhaps may not be a good fit for everyone but when it’s a good fit for you, you’ll know.
This whey powder actually consists of three forms of whey protein, so it includes whey protein hydrolysate and whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate. Ultimately this means that some of the protein is released instantaneously whereas the rest will release gradually throughout the day, creating a long lasting effect. It also consists of 24g of protein in each scoop.
In addition, how could we forget to mention the flavors? There are a whole bunch of flavors of this particular brand of protein powder, from the more generic banana and chocolate flavors to some more obscure offerings, such as smores and snickerdoodle.
- Low in fat and carbs
- Low in socium
- Contains soy and lactose
- UNIVERSITY-STUDY FORMULATED: MusclePharm Combat Protein Powder was created for athletes who demand optimized recovery, muscle growth, and support strength.
- AWARD-WINNING TASTE: Our essential whey protein powder mixes easily and goes great with almond milk, water, milk, fruits, and vegetables. It’s perfect for great-tasting smoothies and shakes
- 5 PROTEIN SOURCES: Our isolate whey powder contains 25 g of protein from 5 unique protein sources. They include both fast- and slow-digesting proteins, fueling muscles and delivering performance for hours
- 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: All MusclePharm products are backed by a 30-day full money-back guarantee.
- BANNED-SUBSTANCE TESTED and certified by Informed-Choice. Athletes who see the Informed-Choice logo on a product can be assured it has undergone rigorous checks and testing to ensure that it is not contaminated with banned substances and is safe to use
If you’re new to the health and fitness world you may not have heart of Optimum Nutrition, but we assure you – pretty much everyone else who has been in the fitness world for a long time has heard of this brand.
Gold Standard Whey Protein is actually one of Optimum Nutrition’s key products, and it contains 24g of protein per serving, so you’re hardly missing out on protein with this powder! Not only that, but the powder also provides 5.5g of branch chain amino acids, in addition to 4G of Glutamine. These additives are very helpful as far as building and repairing muscle is concerned. While the ingredients list is certainly provided, it really doesn’t go in as much dept as we would hope. This powder also consists of three different kinds of whey too so you’re getting a good balance of all three of the main types without the disadvantages of each.
In addition, Gold Standard Whey Protein also comes in 12 different fantastic flavors. You’re spoiled for choice as far as flavors are concerned with this protein powder, with anything from birthday cake flavor to your standard banana and chocolate kinds of flavors. As of this point in time there still isn’t an unflavored option available. As a whole though, the name gold standard is certainly one that applies to this protein powder, giving a lot of other protein powder brands a lot to live up to.
- Affordable option
- Contains enzymes in order to help to improve digestion
- It mixes well with other things such as milk and water
- Consists of three different kinds of whey.
- The ingredients label isn’t particularly descriptive
- Packaging may vary - New look, with the same trusted quality
- Gold standard 100% whey blend – 24 gram blended protein consisting of whey protein isolate, whey protein concentrate, and whey peptides to support lean muscle mass – they don't call it the gold standard of quality for nothing
- Over 5 gram of BCAAs ‚Äì Help build lean and strong muscles with BCAAs
- 3-4 gram carbs, 1-3 gram sugar, and 1-1.5 gram fat, gluten free, no Sucralose in double rich chocolate flavor
- Instantized – Improves mixability to prevent lumps and clumps
Best Whey Protein Powders: A Buyer’s Guide
What is Whey Protein?
Whey protein is, as the name suggests, made from whey. This is essentially a byproduct of cheese production. This protein powder can then be broken down into 3 primary subcategories: concentrate, isolate and hydrolysate.
Why Whey Protein?
There are a lot of reasons why you should incorporate Whey Protein into your diet. To start with, consuming protein is a great way to lose weight. While it’s certainly true that there is no magic pill or drink that will specifically cause you to lose body fat, protein powder is beneficial because, well – it includes protein! Protein is a macronutrient that can help you to feel satiated, in some respects more so than carbohydrates and natural fats.
Protein slows the digestive system down which is why it makes you feel satiated for longer. It also takes a little bit more effort to digest which means that you’re burning a few more calories as you eat it. As a result of this, a lot of studies have suggested that people who consume whey protein powder on a semi regular basis lost more weight than people who didn’t consume it, presumably for the aforementioned reason.
In addition, protein powder is helpful because it gives you pretty much most of the protein that you will need. If you’re eating at a calorie deficit you may find that it’s difficult to fit all of the protein that you need in one day into your diet. With Whey protein powder, you can have the extra protein that you need in your diet that you’re currently missing. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is just 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight, so if you aren’t currently eating that much then Whey Protein Powder is a great way to get more protein into your diet.
The main element that contributes to the popularity of protein powder, though, is that protein can help to build and maintain muscle. Whey Protein Powder is a fantastic thing to use both before and after a workout. Before you start your workout, Whey Protein quickly gets to work, and because it’s low in fat it still feels quite filling and doesn’t leave you feeling heavy. After your workout, if you’re looking to help your muscles repair themselves, then protein also comes in handy. Whey Protein can be used at all sorts of different times and for different purposes, so you may want to use whey protein isolate just at workout times, but you may want to use whey protein concentrate at other times such as when you’re taking a rest day.
Concentrate, Isolate or Hydrolysate?
The three main types of whey protein powders are concentrate, isolate and hydrolysate. As you can probably imagine, there are pros and cons of all of these types of protein powder that should be considered before you embark into the depths of the internet to find the right choice for you.
The first kind is concentrate whey protein powder. These kinds of protein supplements are widely available from most retailers. Usually you can find them in high street stores too, so they aren’t overly difficult to get your hands on. Usually concentrate is the cheapest option when it comes to protein powder too. It also mixes the best with water and most consumers believe that it tastes the best too. On the other hand, concentrate only contains around 80 percent protein. There are carbs included in protein powder – roughly around 5 grams of carbs per servind and then 3 grams or fat. Concentrate whey protein also contains lactose so it’s not suitable if you are lactose intolerant.
Then, you have isolate protein powder. You can usually find isolate protein powder online. This kind of protein powder has been filtered in a different process to concentrate protein powder, so the carbs and the fat is removed. Isolate protein powder contains up to 90 percent protein, with minimal fat and carbs included. There’s also pretty much no lactose included, around 99 percent lactose free to be specific. So, if you do have a problem with lactose intolerance then you most likely don’t need to worry. The taste is okay, but sadly it doesn’t mix as well as concentrate does.
The last type is hydrolysate. You can usually get these protein powders online too. With this form of whey, the product is filtered through once again and it’s almost 95 percent protein. This kind of protein powder is fast absorbing so if you are having a particularly strenuous workout day, then it can be absorbed into the muscles quickly. This kind of protein powder also has digestive enzymes included naturally within it and this aids in breaking it down a little better, hence the faster absorbency. Sadly, this kind of protein powder is by far the most expensive, doesn’t taste particularly nice, and it mixes poorly.
If you can’t decide between the three options, there are variants on the market that blend different whey formulas so you have the good qualities of each type.
What exactly are you aiming for when it comes to taking protein powders? The answer to that question can largely determine what you’re looking for.
If you’re planning on building muscle, you should opt for a protein powder that has a high biological value – such as whey protein and whey isolates.
If, on the other hand, you are trying to lose weight, you should opt for protein powders that don’t have any added sugars or dextrins/maltodextrins, which are essentially sweeteners made out of starch. Also don’t opt for those that have added branched chain amino acids because these help to encourage muscle growth and weight gain.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you consume whey protein powder?
There are many ways you can consume whey protein powder. You can add the powder supplement to either water or milk, primarily.
When consuming whey protein powder, follow the directions that are set out on the bottle or ask an instructor for advice. The reasons behind using protein powder can be different from one person to the next and the way you choose to consume it is largely going to depend on your purpose. Generally, having one scoop of whey protein powder is going to be enough. One scoop will be around the equivalent of 29 grams and ultimately will give you around 17 grams of protein.
Possibly the best time to take whey protein powder is once you’ve finished working out. This can also help in keeping you full so you don’t end up spending the time eating unhealthy snacks from the vending machine.
There are no reported dangers or side effects associated with whey protein powder either!
I’m a vegan – is there any way I can still consume protein powder other than using whey protein?
If you can’t have whey protein for whatever reason, for example if you are lactose intolerant or a vegan, you could have plant based protein powder as an alternative. There are a bunch of advantages to vegan protein powders. They often contain cofactors and superfoods. These kinds of protein powders can help to increase your antioxidant intake, which increases your immune system for harder and longer training sessions.
Usually, plant based protein isn’t as problematic on the gut either. They can build muscle just as well as other protein forms can.
The short answer, really, is that if you’re vegan or vegetarian, you are better off opting for non milk based protein powders, and instead should use plant protein powders.
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