A key ingredient of a healthy diet and lifestyle is protein, and it is, without a doubt, one of the cornerstones of the health and wellness industry. In fact, the sale of protein supplements in the UK has increased by 17.4%, according to The Financial Times. And for good reason. Protein has been scientifically proven to be a key factor in weight loss and getting into shape. Protein shakes are some of the most popular choices among the masses when it comes to losing weight. What is it that makes these protein shakes so beneficial to weight loss? Here are ten reasons why protein shakes are great for shedding those extra pounds.
To help you navigate this article, we've included a table of contents linking to each section:
#1 - Protein Shakes Can Replace Carbs to Speed Up Weight Loss
#2 - Protein Shakes Don’t Add to Your Waistline
#3- Muscle Burns Calories and Protein Builds Muscle
#4 - Protein Shakes Destroy Calories
#5 - Protein Shakes Aid The Slimming Process
#6 - Protein Shakes Can Help You Control Your Appetite
#7 - Protein Shakes are an Easy Way to Add the Right Protein to Your Diet
#8 - Protein Shakes Are A Healthy Convenience Food
#9 - Research Supports the Benefits of Protein Shakes
Protein can be an alternative to carbohydrates. The difference is, carbohydrates give you an immediate energy boost, which allows you to work harder. Protein, on the other hand, takes time to be digested before it can give you energy, making it a better source for the long term. This slow burn helps a great deal in losing weight and in exercise plans. If you drink a protein shake a few hours before your workout, it’ll eliminate the need to consume carbohydrates during and/or after your workout.
When combined with rigorous exercise, protein allows many people to gain muscle weight. This type of weight gain often leads people to wrongly perceive protein as the cause behind the weight gain. Additionally, some protein shakes contain sugar and other flavourings to make them taste better. Some of these can be the equivalent of eating a chocolate bar for lunch. It’s these additives that lead to weight gain. But if you’re taking protein from a source which doesn’t contain these sugars or draws the flavor from natural sources, then the protein shake won’t add an inch to your waistline.
Protein builds muscle, and the bigger your muscles, the more calories your body can burn. By consuming more protein, you’re giving your body what it needs to strengthen your muscles. Consistently drinking protein shakes will set your system into a cycle of continuously burning calories. Simply put, protein shakes give your body the fuel it needs to burn fat.
Some protein—like whey protein—is thermogenic, meaning it burns a lot of the calories in your body, and gives you healthy, strong muscles. Burning off extra calories is essential for weight loss. Even health conscious people who are watching their caloric intake often consume hidden calories. Water and a salad is a healthy meal choice, but add a bit too much dressing, and suddenly your diet starts including hidden calories. A protein shake that consists of whey protein will help you avoid those hidden calories.
Protein contains amino acids, like Leucine, which stimulate fatty acid oxidation and burn calories. When you include a protein shake in your diet, you can counteract the occasional cheat or missed workout. Keep in mind, this doesn’t mean that adding a protein shake to your daily eating regime means you can eat as much cake and ice cream as you want and skip the gym. Make sure your shake has enough of the good protein to counteract the slip up or missed workout.
If you don’t feel full, you want to eat, no matter how much you’ve already eaten. It’s a battle against your mind that your stomach usually wins. The right protein can be the equalizer in this war. In fact, research shows that protein can bring down the levels of Ghrelin, the hormone that stimulates the sensation of hunger. Furthermore, protein like whey contains glycomacropeptide, which stimulates Cholecystokinin. Cholecystokinin is an intestinal hormone that is released after having meal, and it gives you the sensation that you are no longer hungry.
Protein shakes are a great way to add extra protein to your diet without the hassle of extra meal prep. There are plenty of excellent supplements and mixes available to fit the casual dieter wanting to lose a few pounds. There are also shakes that can help hardcore athletes in the middle of training.
One of the biggest obstacles to eating right is how much work it is compared to ready-in-an-instant processed food. Work, family, and other obligations can eat away at your time. So when lunch or dinner comes around, there’s a strong temptation to toss a frozen dinner in the microwave or swing through the drive-thru at the nearest fast food joint, rather than take the time to prepare a healthy meal. A protein shake can’t replace a balanced diet, but it can be a healthier alternative than reaching for convenience food. There are plenty of “just add water” mixes on the market. Instead of a bag of chips or greasy burger, grab a shake and drink to your health.
A number of studies show that protein shakes contribute to weight loss. In fact, people given supplemental protein lost “significantly” more fat mass and had a notable decrease in total and LDL cholesterol. Another study undertaken in 2006 showed that consuming 60 grams of whey protein long term (six months or more) instead of 60 grams of carbohydrates can lead to a significant reduction in body fat and overall weight.
Weight loss and wellness plans can be simplified down to one simple concept. Eat right, and exercise. And this can easily be done with a routine that includes a protein shake. The first step in adding shakes to your diet is deciding what tastes good to you. In order to commit to a protein shake routine, you have to like what you are drinking. A good blend is 20 – 30 grams of protein and around 25 grams of fiber mixed in water. Once your body gets used to all the extra protein, switching out the water for milk might be a good option. Keep in mind that not all protein shakes are created equal. There are more than a few that are liquefied candy bars with a few grams of whey mixed in, so they can stamp healthy on the label. Make sure you know what you’re buying. After you’ve found what you like, you can choose to incorporate it into your meal plan in several different ways. You have many different options. These include: · Meal replacement · Post workout · Pre workout · As a snack · First thing in the morning · Before bed Adding protein shakes to your diet to help with weight loss can be achieved in countless ways, and you should stick with what works for you. When you find a healthy protein shake that you like and you can easily stick to drinking, by all means do that.