The Ultimate Women’s Guide to Protein
Many women have reservations about the use of supplements or even weight training at all in the first place. A common reason given for avoiding supplements and free weights in the gym is the fear of appearing less feminine. “I don’t want to look like a man” is a worry commonly expressed to personal trainers by new clients. This worry clearly stems from a caricature of female professional body builders, with many amateur clients worrying that they’ll eventually end up with the same physique.
The truth is that the majority of the most popular female bodybuilders have insane training regimes, perfect nutrition and adequate sleeping patterns. Many are genetically predisposed to pack on muscle better than an average person and some even choose to inject synthetic testosterone in order to be able to pack on muscle mass as effectively as a man. Odds are if you are just a casual female gym goer then no amount of weight lifting will allow you to come even close to this level of musculature without dedicating your entire lifestyle to it.
Weight lifting is a fun and functional activity that can be preformed by people of any gender. As the body is incredibly dynamic in it’s ability to lose or gain both muscle and fat, any subsequent issues you have with your physique as a result of training can be corrected within 2 weeks by simply dedicating less time to this muscle group.
But What About Supplementation?
There are a LOT of myths about protein powder so there’s a good chance you’ve been put off in the past. Protein Powder isn’t going to give you a masculine figure or anything silly like that.
Protein belongs to a class of dietary essentials called macronutrients. If you don’t have these nutrients your body won’t be able to perform normal functions properly. Muscles, skin, hair and blood are made of protein. Your body will use protein to repair itself, build tissue and produce hormones. Simply put not eating enough protein will result in a slower metabolism, fatigue and a low immune system.
What Are The Different Types of Protein Powders?
The most common types of protein powders are:
- Whey Protein
You’ve probably already heard of whey protein powder. That’s because its a water soluble milk protein meaning you can mix it with water or into a smoothie.
Do I need extra protein?
Generally you can get your recommended daily intake by eating a healthy nutritionally balanced diet. The amount of protein you need totally depends on your lifestyle and life stage. You might want to consider protein if:
- You’re starting on a vegan or vegetarian diet. Typically vegan / vegetarian diets lack a lot of key nutrients like Protein.
- You’ve just started a new workout and you’re looking to build some muscle
- You’re not eating enough protein in your diet for your needs and want to supplement some of that with shakes. (you should not replace meals with protein shakes though)
Can Women Consume Too Much Protein
Too much protein can be harmful for your kidneys and could put stress on your heart. Everyone’s protein intake will be different, it depends on your weight, activity and age.
Should Women Use Whey Protein?
Women will typically shy away from supplements like whey protein powder because of the concern that it will bulk them up. Women do not have the hormones that create the sort of masculine look men get. You won’t suddenly have gigantic biceps or muscular shoulders! Taking whey protein will help aid the progress
How Much Protein Should Women Consume, And When?
Depending on how active a woman is and how much they weigh, a woman can supplement safely with whey protein. What’s recommended by the manufacturers of most whey protein supplements is for women to take ONE scoop, equal to about 20 to 25 grams of protein, once or twice a day.
Men usually need more protein and are recommended to take two scoops, with 20 to 25 grams, per serving and take it once or twice a day.
The best time to take whey protein for both men and women is before, during and/or after a workout. For those who exercise sparingly and are using whey protein for weight loss, whey protein has shown to work best when taken in the morning.
Does Whey Protein Assist In Weight Loss?
Studies have found that people who are trying to lose weight by supplementing with whey protein and exercising have more lean muscle and less body fat. They also have an increase in their metabolism and burn more calories per day than those who don’t supplement or exercise.
Whey protein also aids in helping to keep hunger pangs down for individuals who use it for weight loss. Not only does it help create a feeling of fullness, but it also helps keep cravings down and promotes a feeling of satiety.
Do Women Need Additional Protein In Their Diets?
Yes. Women tend to not consume enough protein in their daily diets. There are many health risks for women who do not consume enough protein on a regular basis.
Some of the health risks are:
- Increased risk of developing osteoporosis
- Slow metabolism
- Thinning of the hair
- Fragile fingernails and toenails