When it comes to healthy aging, using a whey protein powder supplement can ensure you are getting enough muscle building protein in your diet to slow age-related muscle loss, however, if you prefer vegan protein sources, you’ll appreciate this Vegan Protein Powder Comparison to decide which is right for you.
Vegan, vegetarian, or on a lactose free / reduced dairy diet, means you will be avoiding the whey & casein protein powders and looking for a comparable vegan protein powder.
Whey & Casein are a popular choice for protein powders because their superior amino acid make up help slow age-related muscle loss, repair muscle post exercise, are the building blocks for new muscle growth and help control metabolism. Whey is a fast acting protein, meaning that your body absorbs the amino acids quickly and can utilize the nutrients right away to build new muscle. Casein is the slower digesting milk protein and has a slow release of its amino acids for your body to use which helps to slow muscle breakdown and keeps you feeling full longer.
The combination of both of these proteins in protein powders makes it ideal for building muscle fast and preserving the body’s lean muscle mass as you get older. The branched chain amino acid responsible for this is muscle building is primarily leucine, so when choosing a vegan protein powder, ensure you are also getting a healthy dose of leucine.
This Vegan Protein Powder Comparison will help you decide between pea, soy, hemp or brown rice protein when you are looking for the best vegan protein powder to aid in slowing age-related muscle loss, give you energy and increase metabolism.
Vegan Protein Powder Comparison
Deciding on which vegan protein powder is right for you can be a daunting task with so many options on the market. When it comes to protein powders, you want to be sure you are getting quality protein and not paying for fillers or unnecessary ingredients. Not all vegan protein sources have similar amino acid profiles, meaning they may not be providing the right protein to get desired results.
Good to Know
Short Ingredient List – should include protein source, natural flavour, and 3-4 other ingredients
Inexpensive – average price for quality vegan protein is $2.00 per serving. Check scoop size, and servings per container.
20 grams – average serving size should be 20 grams of protein per serving/30g scoop
Quality Protein – if the scoop is over 35grams or more than one scoop is required per serving then the quality of protein used is not very high, hence more volume is required to get a serving or protein.
What to Choose:
Difference Between Pea, Soy, Hemp and Brown Rice Protein
Pea Protein is made from yellow peas and is a popular natural plant-based protein. It is high in branched chain amino acids (BCAA’s) and gluten free, lactose free and dairy free for easy digestion. It is often considered a complete protein similar to casein and eggs because it contains the essential amino acids although it does not contain high amounts in a few key amino acids so it is generally recommend it not be used as a primary source of protein on its own. You will often see pea protein combined with another vegan protein powder source like brown rice to provide the highest quality vegan protein.
Besides being a source of protein, pea protein can also aid in weight loss and muscle maintenance as it scores very high on protein digestibility (85% vs. only 50% for hemp protein).1 The BCAA in the protein may aid in maintaining a muscle building state, decrease fat, and keep you feeling full longer. Many believe that pea protein is helpful in providing pre-workout energy boosts and post-workout muscle recovery.
Soy protein is another plant based protein that contains the essential amino acids however it can be highly processed and some research has linked over consumption of soy to increased risks of certain cancers. Ensure you are buying soy protein isolate which contains more pure protein and isoflavones and less cholesterol and fat compared to soy protein concentrate and try not to make soy your only source of vegan protein.
Hemp protein is unique in that it offers omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids which can reduce inflammation and is high in fiber with 8 grams of fiber in an average 30 gr scoop of hemp protein powder. It is lower in leucine (the amino acid credited with muscle building & repair that helps slow muscle loss as we age) and most other essential amino acids than pea and brown rice protein though, which means you need to consume more hemp protein per serving to get similar protein that you would from pea & brown rice.
Brown Rice Protein
Brown Rice protein is lower in the amino acid lysine, but is high in all other amino acids which makes it a great source of vegan protein. Combining brown rice protein with pea protein, however, has been shown to provide all nine essential amino acids and provide the most concentrated protein per gram comparable to whey protein. Other vegan sources such as soy or hemp are lower quality and may require a larger scoop to get the same protein per serving.
Dairy-based whey and casein proteins are ideal for their muscle-building, repairing and preserving benefits but even if you’re not a vegan or avoid dairy, there is good reason for integrating plant-based proteins into your diet.
A quality vegan protein powder has a short ingredient list, a taste you enjoy and is made with only high quality protein sources such as organic brown rice and pea protein and had added leucine like Boomer Nutrition NEW Vegan Protein Powder. Our vegan protein powder comparison show that these vegan proteins are easily digestible, offer a range of health benefits and if yo combine pea and brown rice protein with added leucine, you still get all the muscle preserving qualities that are important to healthy aging and slowing age-related muscle loss.