Protein Shakes for Everyone
How protein shakes can support your health and fitness goals
The topic of who Premier Protein is made for is one of our favorites, because all we have to do is deliver good news. We actually feel a little bit like Oprah— You get a shake! And YOU get a shake! And yes! YOU also get a shake! That’s because our shakes provide protein your body needs, regardless of your age or fitness goals.
Daily Protein Shake
“Adding a protein shake to your daily routine provides an opportunity for almost anyone to up their protein game,” explains Dr. Liz Applegate, Director of Sports Nutrition Emerita at The University of California Davis. Whether you’re too busy to eat breakfast, concerned that your kids aren’t getting the nutrition they need, or trying to hit specific fitness goals like muscle gain or weight loss, additions of protein drinks to your lifestyle can help.
Fill The Gaps
When you’re rushing out the door in the morning, grab a shake. We know that sitting down for protein-packed breakfast is a luxury that frankly doesn’t make the cut most days.
“Consuming adequate protein is especially helpful for folks who skip meals, such as breakfast,” says Dr. Applegate. “This means missing out on much needed protein to start the day for immune system support, skin health and much more.” She offers these tips to get the most out of your shakes:
- Grab a protein shake along with fruit or cut veggies to have during your morning commute or at your workstation.
- Opt for a shake post-workout to supply some high-quality protein for muscle recovery.
- Finish the day with a protein shake when you realize your food choice fell short on protein.
You don’t have to be shooting for bodybuilder status to have your eye on more muscle. And protein is vital to not just muscle building, but also cell recovery. “Muscle fibers must repair after a tough workout, and studies show that rebuilding of muscle proteins occurs optimally when a high-quality protein such as whey is consumed 30-60 minutes post workout,” Dr. Applegate explains. She offers these ideas:
- Replace your post-workout snack like pretzels or an energy bar with a protein shake.
- Blend a shake with fruits and veggies for a post-workout smoothie that is packed with nutrients.
- Supplement a meal with a half serving of a protein shake to round out your greater protein needs with training.
Manage Your Weight
For people with weight loss goals, getting the nutrition your body needs can be a real balancing act. “The challenge for most dieters is meeting increased protein needs in the face of trimming calories,” says Dr. Applegate. “Your body needs more protein when you are in a calorie deficit to ensure adequate amino acids to do routine repair and maintenance on muscles and organs.” That’s not all—scientists have found that upping protein while on a weight loss journey can help your body burn slightly more calories, and help keep your hunger at bay. Where to start? Dr. Applegate offers these suggestions:
- Drink a protein shake with low-calorie fresh vegetables as a satisfying light meal.
- Make a filling and nutritious smoothie by blending a shake with a piece of fruit and a handful of kale or spinach.
- Curb the hungries with a protein shake blended with ice cubes.
Protein shakes are a great option for individuals looking to supplement their workout routine to maintain and build lean mass, as well as people losing weight through trimming calories but still in search of critical protein.
– Dr. Liz Applegate, Sports Nutritionist
Find Your Teen
Any parent of a teenager knows—keeping your teen fed, particularly with the things you want them to eat—is a challenge. Gone are the days of them eating three meals a day at your table. Enter busy sports schedules and it’s hard to say what they’re putting in their bodies. Protein is a macro that can really start to lag, especially since teens actually have higher protein needs for their size than adults. Dr. Applegate says a protein shake can help bridge some of these gaps.
- Offer a protein shake at breakfast to add a dose of protein to cereal and fruit.
- Pack a chilled shake along with a banana for an easy snack after school
- When a meal is lacking in high-quality protein like fish or plant protein, add in a shake.
Combat Picky Eating
The dreaded dinner battle. It can turn into a power struggle, when you really just want your kids to get the nutrients they need to grow and stay healthy. Dr. Applegate says kids as young as four can reap the benefits of protein shakes to supplement their normal diet, especially when they’re finicky or outright refuse to eat quality proteins like fish, meat, and beans (What kid can say no to a chocolatey shake?!).
“Since a child is much smaller than an adult, their protein needs are lower,” she says. “A portion of a protein shake can help support their needs for this critical growth nutrient.” She recommends reading the nutrition label, and shooting for 7-12g of protein per serving. Sneak in the protein:
- Offer 1/3 cup Vanilla Protein Shake over breakfast cereal.
- Add ¼ cup protein shake to milk, almond milk, etc. for extra protein during a meal. Think chocolate milk, but with an extra dose of protein!
- When a child rejects more traditional food protein, offer a shake along with other healthy foods like veggies, fruit, and whole grains.
So yes! Protein shakes can help pretty much anyone meet their body’s needs. Dr. Applegate suggests thinking of them as a way to round out what your current lifestyle might be missing when it comes to protein and nutrients.
Adding a protein shake can help you fill the gaps when meeting your protein needs. You may find yourself too busy to prepare a balanced meal, or be forced to miss a meal, or worse yet, only have access to unhealthy snack foods or candy.
– Dr. Liz Applegate, Sports Nutritionist