Whey protein for endurance athletes - why whey is the worst choice when it comes to protein
When it comes to recovery and rebuilding after heavy sessions and races, whey protein is rubbish and about the last thing you want to put into your body short of deep fried Mars bars. While this contradicts almost everything the protein industry will tell you on the subject of whey protein for endurance athletes, there are many very good reasons behind this seemingly contrarian view:
1 Whey protein is a by-product of cheese production
Which means it's come from industrial dairy farming, which in turn means it's likely to have come from very unwell, stressed animals kept in poor conditions and loaded with all manner of antibiotics and more. Hardly the font of great nutrition.
2 Whey protein is utterly processed
As if the starter product weren't low grade enough, it then has any semblance of remaining nutrition pounded out of it to be turned into a powder. What good food looks like powder? The answer of course is, 'none'.
3 Whey protein is loaded with sugar
Having been deconstructed, whey powder is now revitalized with the addition of a ton of sugars, usually in multiple guises to dilute their appearance throughout the nutritional label so they don't show up as the largest sole ingredient.
So remove the cover model on the packet and the slick marketing suggesting it's perfect for 'lean definition', 'muscle recovery' or other such guff and what you're left with is a pile of processed junk with assorted sweeteners. Nothing more, nothing less, and you'll be paying a fortune for the privilege.
Worse again, the high sugar, high-processed nature of protein powder combined with its dairy source is a triple whammy meaning it actively increases acidity and inflammation in the body, at the precise time (after heavy training) you're wanting and needing to do the opposite.
Which isn't to say protein doesn't help recovery. It does.
You just don't need a bucket of powdered candy to get it as great protein's widely available in great food: nuts, legumes, chia seeds, flax seeds, spirulina, porridge oats and more are all stacked with awesome protein your body will love for recovery.
Better still, all deliver it with any of the downsides listed above that come with whey.
Next time you're looking for protein, do your body a favour and go natural.
Nuts: pure, natural protein power. Because nature rocks
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