The quest for lean protein is one every gym fanatic knows well, and the debate about whey isolate vs. aminos continues. Ask 10 trainers which one you should take, and you may get 10 different answers.
How much protein do I need?
Protein is an essential nutrient that helps our bodies recover, repair, and protect immune system function. Getting enough protein for your body size, muscle mass, and the energy you expend has been shown to help you meet your goals. Whether you want to lean out, bulk up, improve energy, or meet some PRs, you need protein to help you get there.
Ideally, include protein throughout the day in every meal and snack. Athletes require about 0.8 to 1 gram of protein per pound of lean body weight every day. Those who expend less energy only need about 0.5 to 0.6 grams per pound of protein each day.
To figure out your protein requirements, you’ll need to know your body fat percentage. If you weigh 160 pounds and know that your lean muscle mass is 130 pounds (at 20 percent body fat), that’s about how many grams of protein you need in total throughout the day. Divide that number by your typical number of meals and snacks, and you’ll have the number of protein grams you need to include in each meal or snack.
What’s the difference between whey protein isolate and aminos?
Both isolates and aminos (most commonly in the form of Branched-Chain Amino Acids, or BCAAs) are highly absorbable and available to help the body repair and rebuild muscle tissue. Whey is a complete protein source found in milk. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and when taken in the form of BCAAs, they provide easily digestible protein that can help support workouts and immune function without the additional work that’s required to digest other protein sources.
Either isolates or BCAAs will provide protein in a low-calorie and easily utilized form. Include either one in pre- or post-workout shakes to boost your energy and your body’s ability to recover quickly. The general rule is that if you’re looking to bulk, isolate is what you need. If you need the protein but not the calories so you can lean out, aminos are the answer.
When should I take whey protein or aminos?
Taking 15-20 grams of isolate an hour before a workout helps decrease muscle tissue tearing and provide the fuel you need to power through. BCAAs can also be taken before and during a workout session, but whey is the clear post-workout winner. Add 1-2 scoops to a smoothie to see great results.
Customize a protein plan for your DNA
If you need help determining what protein sources your body can use efficiently, consider GX Nutrient Genetic Direction DNA Testing at Etage Athletic. We’ll help you focus your efforts and get results with a precise nutrition strategy tailored to your DNA. Don’t just guess at what your body needs – lean on science to help you create a plan that works.