How To Use Protein Powder For Weight Loss
Do you feel losing that excess weight feels like an uphill struggle what with the seemingly endless dieting, and then finding the time in your busy life for good quality exercise? Well I know how you feel, but now, after years of trying every different diet under the sun, I have finally found THE best way of staying slim for life. Hurrah!

bulging belly fat

A high protein diet, which is what I have turned to lately to help me stay slim, is one of the key elements in burning fat, and I’m talking specifically the highly dangerous stomach fat that increases your risk of heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes. In this post I will show you exactly when, why and how to use protein powder for weight loss, and also the best protein powder to use for the job in hand.

 

REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD KEEP WITHIN A HEALTHY WEIGHT RANGE:-

Keeping your BMI within a healthy range is not only crucial for long term health and the prevention of many diseases, but also for your energy and vitality levels. And there are SO many other good reasons for keeping excess weight off that many people know nothing about – these include:-

  • CONFIDENCE – Whilst some people are confident no matter what their size most are not, so slimming down can literally change your whole life for just this reason alone.
  • A HEALTHY HEART – Taking the strain off your heart by losing weight will lead to decreased risk of heart disease, stroke, and heart attack.
  • DECREASED RISK OF CANCER – Being slim decreases your risk of cancer because obesity causes inflammation and DNA damage, both of which are a big risk factor for the big C.
  • DEEPER SLEEP – Eating high GI junk food hinders sleep due to blood sugar fluctuations. A low GI healthy diet keeps blood sugar stable as well as promoting weight loss.
  • REDUCED RISK OF DIABETES – Eating less junk foods, plus being in a healthy weight range slashes your risk of diabetes.
  • LESS JOINT PAIN – Less inflammation and less weight on joints in general leads to a huge alleviation of joint and back problems.
  • LOWER STRESS LEVELS – Slimmer people generally eat more antioxidant rich foods and less refined sugars. Fluctuating blood sugar from a junk food diet leads to mood swings, much higher stress levels, and an inability to cope in stressful life situations.
  • LESSENING OF ASTHMA AND ALLERGIES – Being overweight puts a strain on both your respiratory system and adrenals, therefore making allergies much more likely OR worse than before.
  • HIGHER SEX DRIVE – The process of your body torching fat raises testosterone levels, which in turn boosts sex drive in both men and women.
  • STRONGER IMMUNITY – This naturally comes with the eating of less junk and the intake of more healthful fruits and vegetables – all of which are laden with immune boosting antioxidants, phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
  • BETTER MEMORY – High fructose and sugar laden foods may disrupt the creation of neural pathways in the brain associated with memory. Losing the excess pounds and the eating of healthful foods will both help to clear brain fog.
  • LESS SWEATY – Being overweight means your body has to work harder just to move about and function properly, this leads to more sweat being produced by the body as it tries to compensate.
  • CLEARER COMPLEXION – Eating less junk and more veggies will do wonders for your complexion, especially when combined with the powerful and anti aging antioxidants of green superfood powders.
  • MORE ENERGY – Being over weight saps your energy like crazy as just the mere effort of hauling around those excess pounds tires you out more quickly. You will notice a remarkable difference in your energy levels with e very pound you lose.
  • IMPROVED MOOD – Due to having more energy for exercise which in itself releases those feel-good endorphins.
  • EASIER BREATHING – Being slim will improve your oxygen efficiency, which means you won’t get so out of breath doing every day activities such as running for the bus or climbing a flight of stairs.
  • YOU’LL SNORE LESS – Sleep apnea and snoring are both a lot worse in obese people.
  • GREAT FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY- Often you will find, when you turn to a healthy eating regime, that your whole family will want a piece of the action when they see how well you look and feel. Also, you can test out your new healthy recipes on them.
  • YOU WILL LIVE LONGER – Obesity can lower your life expectancy by an average of 14 years, so if that’s not enough to make you want to fight the flab then I don’t know what is.

 

HOW PROTEIN WORKS:-

woman flexing biceps

A high protein diet works in the simple way of helping you to burn fat whilst still maintaining, or building lean muscle mass. On a general calorie restricted diet your body doesn’t just burn fat but lean muscle tissue as well. This is bad because you need muscle on your body to help burn calories even when you’re resting: muscle actually needs more calories than fat just to maintain itself, and that is how having high muscle mass contributes to keeping you slim.

You don’t need to beef up too much to get this effect, you just need some nice toned muscle in all the places it should be. After all, this kind of muscle looks good on everybody as it makes you look healthy and fit. Plus there are so many other benefits to having optimal amounts of muscle mass that have nothing to do with aesthetics. These include:-

  • A longer life in general
  • Weight managment
  • Increased calorie burn
  • Less risk of injuries from accidents
  • Better mood
  • Stronger mind
  • Deeper sleep
  • Strong immune system
  • Balanced hormones
  • Higher sex drive
  • Better ability to cope with stress
  • Stronger bones
  • Better memory and brain health in general
  • More energy
  • A much decreased risk of ANY chronic disease

plate of healthy foods

As you can see, the reasons to keep both slim AND physically fit are many, and they go hand in hand to help give you the sickness free and long life you deserve.

Eating a healthy plant based diet is a good place to start on your journey to greater health, and making sure you get at least 7-10 portions of antioxidant rich foods such as colourful fruits and veggies will ensure you get all the nutrients you need to stay in shape, plus give you zest and vitality.

 

How To Use Protein Powder For Weight Loss

Eating a high protein diet promotes weight loss mainly due to the fact that protein fills you up, leaving less room for junk foods, also it is low GI (meaning it won’t cause an insulin spike) and promotes the burning of fat instead of lean muscle tissue.

kettlebell class

For an even higher fat burn you should combine your protein powder with a mix of weight bearing and cardio exercises at least 3 times a week. In fact, this is highly recommended if you are taking a protein supplement for maximum results.

There are specific fat burning exercises you can do to really get your body into fat torching mode, and they combine resistance training with some cardiovascular exercise. Things like weight lifting (not as scary as it sounds and also a great fat burner), HITT training, swimming and boxercise are among the best I know.

And for toning belly fat you can’t beat buying a simple weighted hula hoop that you can easily use at home or in the back garden. This one really works!

WHICH TYPE OF PROTEIN TO USE?

Firstly, you should be sure to buy a good quality protein powder. There has never been a time when there are just so many different types of proteins to choose from, and the formulations available on the market today truly are fantastic. Some of them have added nutrients, green superfood powders, digestive enzymes, and even probiotic’s.

 

Some of the best protein powders are plant based:-

protein shake

Plant based protein powder’s are very popular at the moment, and for good reason. Plant proteins are cleaner, cause less inflammation than animal proteins, and are perfect for those with dairy intolerances. Some of them aren’t ‘complete proteins’, but many are very close, and it’s easy to make up for this fact when you know how to combine them correctly – or simply buy a ready-made blend.

If you would like to buy a straight up protein powder alone, such as pea, rice, hemp, sunflower, pumpkin, quinoa or potato for example, then you may need to buy a couple and alternate or mix them together, OR my particular choice would be one of the blends. Blends are formulated to contain a full spectrum of amino acids, which is something you may not get with all of the single powders.

 

The best protein powders for weight loss:-

The blends are great in terms of weight loss, especially as they can double up as super low calorie meal replacements. Choose one that contains a full amino acid profile plus greens and digestive enzymes for the best results. This will help you be sure to get lots of nutrients like you would if you had had a meal, and some of these powders are specifically designed for actual weight loss purposes which makes it even easier.

woman's bicep muscles

If you’re in training, or doing lots of exercise then you can afford to take extra protein on top of your meals and healthy snacks. Some of them are even specifically designed to replace nutrients lost during intense workouts, or you could also look for a specifically designed powder for muscle gain if you want to boost your muscle mass.

You can see now why it’s well worth the effort of looking into which type of powder will work for your specific needs. To make this easy for you I have already reviewed and devised a list of the Best Protein Powder’s of 2018 if you’d like to check it out.

 

HOW MUCH TO TAKE

plant based protein powder

If you’re on a plant based, or vegan diet then you will find it harder to reach your protein needs (especially when exercising regularly). Being a plant based eater myself for the past 18 months I have learnt in that I do actually need a protein supplement otherwise I start losing muscle mass. However, I think the fact that I do a lot of exercise has something to do with this, but my point is you have to be sure you are reaching your requirements.

For weight loss purposes, or if you’re in training then you should aim for up to 1.5 – 2 grams per 1 kg of body weight. Most protein powders will come in between 15 -30 grams of protein per portion, so this will give you some guide.

You should use protein powder alongside other low carbohydrate foods. Keeping yourself full on high protein, low carb foods is the key to weight loss. You should also make sure you are incorporating LOTS of antioxidant rich foods too to keep your body alkaline and in fat burning mode.

 

BEST TIME TO CONSUME YOUR PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTS:-

green smoothie

For quicker weight loss, you can use a protein blend with added greens and other nutrients as a meal replacement in itself. You may want to blend it with a banana for added bulk and to make it more filling and it will still come in low calorie; you could do this for 2 of your daily meals (be sure to have some low GI snacks in between if you need to).

Make sure you have at least one proper meal too or you will soon get bored, plus you need the satiety aspect of chewing on some real food.

 

Keeping the body in fat burning mode:-

weight loss

When you sleep at night your body goes into a repair and fat burning state, but only if you haven’t eaten too many carbohydrates the evening before and instead stuck to high protein meals instead. Carbs cause an insulin response, and if there’s still too much insulin in your system when you go to be bed then your body will be in fat storage mode rather than fat burning – obviously bad for the waist line! Eat your carbohydrate meals at breakfast and lunch, and have a low carb dinner in the evening.

 

Keep off carbs in the morning!

halved avocado

Alternatively, the morning is a great time to take advantage of keeping the fat burning state going from after your nights sleep by having just a pure protein weight loss shake for breakfast with half an avocado (no banana), and NO CARBS until lunch. This means you will get a good 16-17 hours of your body being in super fat burning mode without you even going hungry.

This works really well, and you are still feeding your body nutritious food without getting the usual fat storing insulin spike that you get from refined carbohydrates. And the best part of all – it’s healthy and you don’t ever have to go hungry, or do any dangerous starvation diets!

 

Snacks:

mans abdominal muscles

If you just want to stick with your regular diet then you can still use a small scoop of protein (equivalent of about 15 grams) as an  in-between snack instead of your usual high carb snacks.

Doing this will fill you up for a lot longer and for fewer calories as any other snack, plus you won’t get that fat storing insulin spike as your blood sugar will remain much more stable – thus helping your body to burn fat more efficiently and bring you closer to that toned body you’ve always wanted.

 

 

 

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Categories: WEIGHT LOSS

Stefanie Taylor

I have studied nutrition for many years, and have since discovered that a plant based diet has been the most beneficial to my health and body. I have more energy and zest for life than I have ever had and this website is dedicated to helping others who wish to know more, and start out on this lifestyle.

12 Comments

Evan Cruz · 11/08/2018 at 6:44 pm

Hi there Stefanie, fine article here. I must ask though, is there a link on how to make the actual protein weight loss shake instead of just the link to ingredients? Thanks.

    Stefanie Taylor · 12/08/2018 at 10:29 am

    Hi Evan, actually that’s great you pointed that out as I never actually thought about doing that. I am going to go in and write a section about how to do it. Basically, I would just use my blender and add protein powder, water or nut milk, and maybe a banana or some other fruit (even avocado is good if you really want it to be filling), and just whizz. I do find that frozen fruit works great as it gives it an ice-cream texture.

Huy · 11/08/2018 at 6:44 pm

Hello there Stefanie! Great article you have here. It’s great that you’re talking about plant based proteins as many people have questions about them these days. I occasionally would take a plant based one because sometimes whey makes me bloated. I normally take a protein shake early in the mornings because i’m always in a rush and can’t get breakfast in. I always find myself getting hungry before I can get to my next meal, is there something you would suggest for that?

    Stefanie Taylor · 12/08/2018 at 10:43 am

    Hi Huy,
    Yes I agree, plant based proteins are definitely better for stopping the bloating, which is why I am now an avid fan of them myself.

    As for getting hungry so quickly; I think the problem may be that because you are having a shake for breakfast instead of an actual meal your body is processing the food way too quickly. Don’t forget when you blend things up the blender is doing all the hard work of breaking the food down so your body doesn’t have to, therefore you are hungry again too soon. This is good in some cases when you want to get nutrition in quickly.

    A straight protein powder is great for a snack as it’s low GI so won’t mess with your blood sugar, but it also won’t be too long until your next meal if it is just a snack. If you are going to use a protein shake as a meal replacement then I suggest you add half an avocado as the healthy fats in this will really help to keep you full. You could even add a handfull of seeds or something similar, as long as it has the fats. This also makes it a much more rounded meal.

    If you are still getting hungry between meals after doing all of that then I think maybe your blood sugars may be a bit out of whack so you may find cutting down, or completely out, all kinds of refined sugars (this includes even so called ‘healthy sugars’ such as honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, brown rice syrup. They are all free sugars as they have been extracted from their whole form and are high GI. Hope that has been of some help!

igor · 12/08/2018 at 11:31 am

Hi Stefanie!
I enjoyed reading your article. Regarding your article, I would like to add the following …

Sport has been a big part of my life since my childhood (I still don’t know why I don’t write about it yet). Now I am much older and still doing sport. Coaching tennis and playing it myself as well. Sometimes riding the bicycle, going to swim and to the gym.
Because of the fact that I am 57 now and a bit overweighted (approx, 7-8 kg more as I need, 181 cm of hight and 94 kg in weight, I would like to have 87-88 kg) I know the importance of the good, or better said proper body shape.

In your article, you mentioned many relevant and important facts about problems connected with being overweight.

I can only confirm that being overweight can lead to back and spine problems (experiencing myself as well). Being overweight is like carrying a barrel around your body on a daily basis! Overnight as well, of course. It means you are carrying additional unnecessary weight around your body all the time, what puts a lot of pressure on your body and makes your living harder.

Accumulated unnecessary calories transform in our bodies into fat. Thus, intake-outtake of calories process on a daily basis is a very important “tool” for controlling weight and your overall health.

Thanks a lot for your great post. I will bookmark it and print it out.

Keep up the good work!
Best regards

    Stefanie Taylor · 12/08/2018 at 2:23 pm

    Hi Igor, I’m really glad you enjoyed the post. It’s great you are still into so many sports as I believe it is something we need to keep up our whole lives. In fact, it is even more crucial as we get older if anything! Lots of people don’t understand this and think they are too old for sport/competitive sports.

    If you are having some problems with excess weight then you should try adding some extra protein shakes into your diet instead of carby snacks. This would be especially good for you considering you are into sports.

    Unfortunately, as we age it does get harder to shift unwanted pounds, due to hormones, thyroid slowing down, and many other factors. But it’s certainly not impossible; just takes a bit more effort, but so worth it in the long run. For more information on weight loss please refer to this post

Andrew · 12/08/2018 at 7:24 pm

Your article has taught me so much and it has helped me reinforced knowledge I’ve acquired in the past about nutrition and especially when it comes to the use of protein powder. I think it is a great way of losing weight. Thanks for such an insightful review.

    Stefanie Taylor · 13/08/2018 at 1:29 pm

    Hi Andrew, thanks, and yes a higher protein, lower carb diet will definitely kick start weight loss. If you are going to try it then good luck and I hope it works for you.

Fred · 13/08/2018 at 9:14 pm

Another awesome article, Stafanie, Protein Powder may be the best way to go with weight loss and muscle growth. I have never used protein powder but I have relatives that use it and it works well for them in sustaining muscle mass. It also helps him in staying trim and lean. This along with a healthy diet and daily exercise. Thanks for your help understanding how protein powder helps with losing weight and keeping our body healthy.

    Stefanie Taylor · 14/08/2018 at 7:46 pm

    Hi Fred, yes a good protein powder is just great for anybody trying to trim fat and maintain muscle. Dieting is notorious for burning precious muscle instead of unwanted fat annoyingly. This can be negated by upping protein intake either through food or a supplement; and I definitely recommend a supplement to dieting vegans, or people who do lots of exercise, would even go so far as to say older people as they are losing muscle mass at a much faster rate.

Garen · 15/08/2018 at 3:12 am

I have always heard that eating your carbs in the morning is good for getting rid of fat. Obviously, you can’t eat junk food throughout the day. Eating good foods that help fuel your body is recommended.

On the topic of eating a low carb breakfast what would be a good example for breakfast. I have done the Keto diet which is high good fats and protein. However, it did limit your carbs to about 40-60 a day which made me feel kind of irritable.

    Stefanie Taylor · 15/08/2018 at 8:32 am

    Hi Garen, yes I don’t recommend the keto diet as it’s just too low carb and for me personally I found it triggered my depression and anxiety. However, some people swear by it so I guess we’re all different. When it comes carbs in the morning, then of course that’s fine (especially if you need a carb boost in the morning) but ONLY if they are good low GI carbs. There’s a big difference and high GI carbs will make you gain weight much more easily. Please check out this list .

    If you do’t have carbs just at breakfast then you are cutting your carb intake for the day and keeping your body fat burning after its night time fast. This tends to work great for keeping weight down in an easy way. You can still have your carbs for the rest of the day as long as they are healthy ones.

    For breakfast you could have a protein shake with half an avocado, or scrambled eggs, avocado, and spinach (that was my fave before I went vegan). Or if you do like some carbs in the morning I’d go for something like oatmeal with a scoop of protein and some nuts or seeds, or sourdough with sugar free peanut butter/ avocado. Just be sure to keep it very low in refined sugars. Hope that helps.

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