whole food vs. protein shakes
- 08-13-2009, 08:23 PM
whole food vs. protein shakes
ive seen countless posts where people say to drop the shakes and eat whole food. Im just curious what most of you guys are doing? And why your doing it.....the only real argument that i have heard for whole food (that makes any sense) is the thermic effect. But is the benefit of this really going to overcome the benefits of using something like a whey isolate? Please discuss.....
- 08-13-2009, 10:53 PM
i found out that a solid food does alot more then just a shake does. ive always thought protein was protein. liquid or solid didnt matter, wrong. a solid protein as far as tuna, steak, chicken will do more for you then using just protein shakes. i think 2/3 of ur daily value of protein should be from food. ive been using that now and ive been seeing good gains in strenght hardness, and size. diet is 70% of working out
- 08-13-2009, 10:57 PM
definitely have to agree with this. ever since i increased the amount of solid food protein intake i get on a daily basis i have noticed more muscular fullness/hardness.
08-14-2009, 06:28 AM
It has more benefits than just the protein and chemicakl mix.
I am not knocking protein shakes because they work well when you are busy or trying to get a few extra grams.
If you are lucky enough to find a raw milk or grass fed beef/buffalo farm to purchase from on a regular basis its even better.
Because the green nutrients are already in the beef and its considerably more healthy than grain fed beef.
08-14-2009, 08:04 AM
I don't think anybody is saying drop the shakes ..just don't depend on them for the bulk of your Protein intake .. they are still very usefull as a supplement to your diet and very easy to digest.. perhaps too easy to make them the main source however.
Mind and Muscle Board Representative I am not a physician and any advice is solely based on personal experience with various products
08-14-2009, 08:21 AM
When i 1st started on this lifelong journey or exercise and clean living, i heard 1gm or protein for every LB you weigh and 2 if your bulking. now this is generally true but i misread what was being said there, and started downing shakes to meet this goal. while i was eating healthy (chicken, tuna, salmon etc.) i was not eating enough food to hit the mark of 1gm per LB. thinking about it months later and reading that whey protein is digested so quickly and your body will only absorb so much at one time, i opted to go with more real food to meet my requirements. whey protein absorption vs. real food having to be broken down and digested? there's a big difference in time there. also by trying to meet my daily quota of protein i learned the most valuable lesson in this lifestyle, diet is key. anyone can down 10 shakes a day and get the right amount of protein right? now consider how much planning and research goes into mapping out a diet? how much you will learn e.g. grams of protein in a chicken breast, turkey, cottage cheese etc. you will miss out on that. now, shakes are included in my meals like most would drink water during meals. if I'm in a pinch for time i use one, and after i w/o of course, other than that it's included to wash everything down as i eat instead of water.....
08-14-2009, 10:55 AM
Supplement: something added to complete a thing, make up for a deficiency, or extend or strengthen the whole.
Personally, I only use them when I want to get a quick infusion of protein....first thing upon waking and post w/o. The rest should be whole food!
Always open light. It’s not what you open with, it’s what you finish with. Louie Simmons
08-14-2009, 01:10 PM
6 food meals + 1 shake PWO = growth!
08-14-2009, 01:37 PM
The whole food protein is better because, in general, it takes your body longer to break down the protein. Meaning you get a slower dose of protein over a longer period of time.
Most fish has Omega 3's, lean red meat has creatine, etc so there are other things besides just straight up protein.
The shakes most people down are whey which is a quick digesting protein. It gives you a burst of protein over a short period of time. Great for in the morning to get you out a catabolic state and before a workout.
Thats my take on it
08-14-2009, 01:48 PM
alot of good info here.
i actually make alot of my protein based meals (chicken, hard boiled eggs, beef, etc) on the weekends for the coming week. i dont have enough time everyday to make my meals before i get out the door. easier to have it pre-cooked, then just nuke it at work and when i get home etc.
it helps me stay on track... also make sure you're getting your fiber if you're having trouble with snacking or sweets... the fiber makes you feel fuller longer, so u can help deal with those cravings. the sweetness of a protein shake is also a good replacement for a chocolate bar or cookies.
08-15-2009, 11:04 AM
if the only benefit is the slower amino release then wouldnt something like an egg protein or milk protein or casein be just as effective as whole food? or even a blended protein? the responses here have been very typical to what i ws talking about in my first post....food=huge....but im not really seeing why...and as far as the added nutrients in whole food my two proteins of choice, pro complex and myolean, both have added nutrients....dont get me wrong i get my whole food in, but this viewpoint is parroted all over the boards and ive never seen any good reasoning behind it....
08-15-2009, 11:48 AM
hope this helps you... something i found with the ol' google:
Protein Supplements Vs. Protein Foods!
By Patrick Gamboa
Many aspiring bodybuilders are hoping that this is the year that their bodies will transform into the bodies of their dreams. Unfortunately, bodybuilders love for protein puts them at the mercy of protein manufacturers and vulnerable to protein manufacturers marketing ploys. Fledgling bodybuilders may not know as much as veteran bodybuilders but they inevitably know that protein plays a role in their future bodybuilding success. Where should this protein come from? To answer this question, we will look at the role of protein in foods versus protein supplementation.
Pick up any publication devoted to health and fitness and you will be inundated with articles on protein. Protein manufacturers are notorious for throwing around words like cross flow microfiltration, oligopeptides, ion exchange, protein efficiency ratio, biological value, nitrogen retention and glycomacropeptides as a way to convince potential buyers. It sure sounds convincing, especially when scores of scientific references are cited. Like most aspects of bodybuilding (and the supplement industry in general), marketing hype rather than physiological reality drives the issue of protein.
Many nutrition “experts” (people who sell supplements), state that there are distinct advantages of protein supplements: powders and amino acid tablets over whole foods. There are many different methods of determining protein quality, including biological value (BV), Protein efficiency ration (PER), Net Protein Utilization (NPU), and protein digestibility corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS).
BV is one of the most commonly used and is arguably, the best measure of a protein’s quality. BV is based on how much of the protein consumed is actually absorbed and utilized in the body. The higher the amount of protein (nitrogen) that is actually retained, the greater the BV. If a protein has a BV of 100, it means that all of the protein absorbed has been utilized with none lost. Whole eggs score the highest of all foods with a BV of 100, while beans have a BV of only 49.
Protein quality is certainly an important issue, but it is one that has been enormously overstated and even distorted for marketing purposes. Whey protein is truly an excellent protein with a biological value at or near 100. Many advertisements will have you believe that their whey is between 104 –157 on the BV scale. In “Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism”, BV is defined as “a measure of nitrogen retained for growth and/or maintenance that is expressed as a percentage of nitrogen absorbed.” When a protein supplement is listed as having a BV over 100, the company has intentionally manipulated the number for marketing purposes. The companies are usually making reference to the chemical score of the protein. Chemical score is a comparison of the amino acid pattern in an ideal reference protein to a test protein and therefore the number can exceed 100.
Most bodybuilders and strength athletes already consume more than enough protein, so the importance of BV to these athletes who are already consuming enough protein has been overplayed. Even though whey has a higher BV than chicken breast, fish, or milk protein, if the total quantity of protein you consume is sufficient, then it is not likely that substituting whey for food proteins will result in any additional muscle.
For the purposes of developing muscle, the only guidelines for protein that you must follow are: (1) consume a source of complete protein with every meal, (2) eat at frequent intervals approximately three hours apart, (3) consume a minimum of 0.8 grams to 1 gram per pound of bodyweight.
Because whey protein does have a high BV, it probably offers the most benefits when you are dieting on very low calories. When your energy intake and correspondingly, protein intake is reduced, whey protein could help you get greater utilization of the smaller amount of protein that you are taking in. Whey protein also provides a way to get high quality protein without the fat.
It has been suggested that whey may have other advantages besides high protein quality. These benefits include enhanced immunity, increased antioxidant activity and quick absorption. Several studies in “Clinical and Investigative Science” by Dr. Gerard Bounous of Montreal have shown that whey protein provides anti carcinogenic properties, protection from infections, and other enhanced immune responses. Whey has also been shown to raise levels of Glutathione, an important antioxidant that can offer protection from free radical oxidative damage. While such findings are very promising, all these studies were done on mice, so it is unclear how well the results extrapolate to humans.
Another acknowledged benefit of whey protein is its fast absorption rate. Although their is not any evidence that protein supplements digest more efficiently than whole foods. They are definitely digested faster. This is most important after a training session when the rates of protein synthesis and glycogen re-synthesis are increased. Even in considering post workout nutrition, there is still little proof that a liquid protein-carb complex will actually produce better muscular growth than whole foods, as long as complete whole foods are consumed immediately after the training session and every three waking hours for a period of 24 hours thereafter.
What about amino acid pills? Amino acids are simply predigested protein. Proponents of amino acid supplementation claim that because the amino acids are predigested, the body will absorb them better, leading to greater improvements in strength and muscle mass. It sounds logical, but this is a gross underestimation of the body’s capacities and actually the reverse is true. The human digestive system was designed to efficiently process whole foods; it was not designed to digest pills and powders all day long. Amino acids are absorbed more rapidly in the intestine when they are in the more complex di and tri-peptide molecules. Your body gets better use of the aminos as protein foods are broken down and the amino’s are absorbed at just the right rate for your body’s needs. In “Exercise Physiology; Energy Nutrition and Human Performance,” authors Katch and McArdle state that “amino acid supplementation in any form has not been shown by adequate experimental design and methodology increase muscle mass or significantly improve muscular strength, power, or endurance.”
Furthermore, consuming predigested protein when you are seeking fat loss is not necessarily advantageous because it shortchanges you of the thermic effect of real food. Whole foods have a major advantage over protein supplements; they stimulate the metabolism more. This is known as the “thermic effect”. Protein has the highest thermic effect of any food. Including a while protein food with every meal can speed up your metabolic rate as much as 30% because of the energy necessary to digest, process, and absorb it. This means that out of 100 calories of a protein food such as chicken breast, the net amount of calories left over after processing it is 70. In this respect, the fact that protein foods digest slower than amino acid tablets is actually an advantage.
Value of Source
A final argument against amino acid supplements is the cost. Amino acids are simply not cost effective. One popular brand of “free form and peptide bonded amino acids,” contains 150 1000mg. Tablets per bottle and costs $19.95. One thousand mg. of amino acids is equal to 1 gram of protein. This would mean that the entire bottle contained 150 grams of protein. Dividing the price of the bottle by the total grams we get the price per gram, which is 13.3 cents. Now lets t compare that to a chicken breast. At the local supermarket I can buy a pound of chicken breast for $2.99. According to Corinne Netzer’s “Complete Book of Food Counts,” there are 8.8 grams of protein in each ounce of chicken, so one pound of chicken (16 oz) has about 140 grams of protein. That would be $2.99 divided by 140 grams which would come out to 2.1 cents per gram. The amino acids cost six times more than the chicken.
The Bottom Line
The biggest advantage of protein supplements is not that they can build more muscle than chicken or egg whites or any other whole food protein, the biggest advantage is convenience. It is easier to drink a protein shake than it is to buy, prepare, and cook whole foods. Consuming small frequent meals is the optimal way to eat, regardless if your goal is muscle gain or fat loss. To keep your body constantly in positive nitrogen balance, you should consume a complete protein every three hours. For many people, eating this often is nearly impossible. That is when a high quality protein supplement is the most helpful.
Aside from the convenience, the truth about protein supplements is that they offer few advantages over protein foods. There is no scientific evidence that you cannot meet all of your protein needs for muscle growth through food. As long as you eat every three hours and you eat a complete protein such as eggs, lean meat or dairy products with every meal, it is not necessary to consume any protein supplements to get outstanding results. Whey protein does have some interesting and useful properties and supplementing with a couple of scoops a day is not a bad idea, especially if you are on a low calorie diet for fat loss. Aside from that, focus on real food and do not believe all the hype you read. Good luck on your training for the New Year.
If you have any questions or comments regarding this article please send your inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Groff, James, et al, Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism, West Publishing company, 1995.
2. Fruhbeck, Gema. Slow and fast dietary proteins. Nature, 391: 843-844
3. Boirie, Y. et al. Slow and fast dietary proteins differently modulate postprandial protein accretion. Proc National Acad Sci, 94: 14930-14935, 1997
4. Lemon, Peter, Protein and Exercise: update, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Vol 19, No. 5, S179-S190, 1987
5. Carraro, F., et al, Effect of exercise and recovery on muscle protein synthesis in human subjects. Amer Jpurnal of physiology, 259: E470, 1990
6. Bounous, G., et al, The immunoenhancing property of dietary whey protein concentrate. Clinical and Investigational Medicine, 11: 271-278. 1988
7. Sadler, R., The benefits of dietary whey protein concentrate on the immune response and health. S Afr. J Dairy Sci, 24: No 24, 1992
8. Netzer, Corinnine. The Complete Book of Food Counts. Dell Publishing, 1997
9. Katch, Katch & McArdle, Exercise Physiology; Energy, Nutrition and Human Performance, Williams and Wilkins, 1996
08-15-2009, 12:17 PM
actually the gist i got from that is that while whey is superior you dont need it.....but again im talking the whole spectrum of proteins here not just whey
08-15-2009, 01:33 PM
08-15-2009, 05:18 PM
08-15-2009, 05:29 PM
08-15-2009, 06:11 PM
08-16-2009, 12:40 PM
08-16-2009, 12:42 PM
capnsavem very intresting article thanks
I'm back from a longggg nap!
08-25-2009, 06:30 PM
08-25-2009, 09:28 PM
IMO, shakes have their places, as in post workout when protein is needed fast, same as when waking up. But, also in the morning I still make it half shake/half whole food since the shakes don't have near as much nutrients, long digestion, keeping you full etc. There is just so much more nutrients in whole food opposed to shakes, even on the go I try to make it whole food. Plus food is more bang for the buck.
Those are just my reasons behind it.
08-25-2009, 09:48 PM
Lack of micronutrients, sketchy quality control practices and virtually non-existant regulation are a few reasons. I don't know whether it was Jay or Ronnie that admitted they cut all protein powders from prep because "they didn't trust them." You even have to weigh out your scoops because I have never once had 1 scoop weigh out to one serving.
08-25-2009, 11:16 PM
08-26-2009, 07:27 AM
im in the industry in a small way and i know some people very well that you could call "insiders." ive been told the stories how some companies will buy inferior raws that have been rejected by others...yada...yada...yada... .etc...etc....if you dont have complete faith in the product your using then your using the wrong products....you get what you pay for! i would never use a companies product that i didnt have the utmost faith in because its a little cheaper
08-26-2009, 02:34 PM
08-26-2009, 09:30 PM
who says protein shakes don't make u feel filled, i drink protein after i workout and sometimes i'm not even hungry for lunch and have to force lunch down, and i'm not useing weight gainer protein, i'm using like 1 g carb stuff, but i'd rather eat tuna anyday over drinking protein, i used to have to travel for meeting for my job, so i'd stay with friends in the area of the meeting, and it is convient to drink a shake before the meeting then going out and finding somewhere to eat in the early morning, i also buy protein bars by the box, or i get them for free if gnc can't sell them before the date
09-02-2009, 11:43 PM
1. Do your sums - there is no way eggs are cheaper than whey in terms of $ to gms of protein, unless you're using nitrotech sh1t
2. Raw eggs are far less bio-available than cooked eggs so there isn't a hope that they put on 'waaaaay more muscle'
09-03-2009, 12:15 PM
Shakes should be used to augment your regular diet. whole food should be staple for sure. Right now, I'm using 2 servings of ON 100% per shake, 2 times a day. I do that because I can't pull out the tuna or grilled chicken at 10:30am/3:30 pm at my desk lol. When I'm at home though, I rarely have a shake.
09-03-2009, 12:42 PM
I'm surprised no one mentioned the fact that your body burns calories to break down whole foods.
09-03-2009, 12:50 PM
I agree with what mooch says. and also, the term "protein shakes" is a little generic isn't it? Depends what the hell you call a protein shake and what you put in them. You cant just say protein shakes are better or worser then food.
One man's protein shake could just be some soya milk with a frikkin banana while another man puts cow dung into a blender with a sprinkling of whey and calls that his protein shake.
Mate, it depends on what you have in your protein shake. Someone like me, I have natural powdered oats with a serving of whey in water with some stevia. I get small amounts of healthy fats from it, good source of carbs in my oats, and protein from the whey which is slowed from the Oats in the shake. For me, thats my food regardless of what people wana say and make rules and say "you should have x amount of shakes and x amount of food from meals" otherwise you've got it all wrong.
Then it also depends on your lifestyle....People have lives outside of the gym, some work, some dont. Im self employed, and even then protein shakes 3 times a day with 2 whole meals and some staples from whole foods mixed in throguh the day is what makes my diet. Now i cant afford one day to have to go out with my family, and my diet gets ****ed up or I have to miss a meal just cuz my eating time is not in sync with other people's and its not quite dinner time yet, or im at a place where I cant get food, then what WTF do you do?
I cant cook, im learning, but im pretty crap at it....I cant go frikkin bonkers all day long stressing about what Im going to eat for my next meal, so my 'protein shakes' are a life saver for me, I just make my damn shake if its time for it, and down the damn thing. When its time to have a proper meal, I eat.
In short, it should be a personal thing. There shouldn't be a right or wrong answer for this. The biggest problem I have like i said with eating all or mostly whole foods in the day is because Of having to do other things in my life, I cant afford my meal times to get ****ed up, or to have to be stranded somewhere and be able to eat some sugary fatty crap.
Hope this gives you a different perspective on your question.
09-03-2009, 01:55 PM
This is a top thread and excellent question. I am going to go against the flow...
A. Its hard to hit 200g of protein per day
B. 12 eggs per day, could be good but its a lot of cholesterol.
C. Shakes are SUPERB. Why? ... nutritional balance.
1. 60g protein powder
2. Same volume of finely ground oats (perhaps the best source of low GI carb)
3. 1 scoop of mega-vit, mineral and adaptogen mix. This stuff tastes awful in otherwise.
4. 1 scoop of finely ground seeds
5. You could add crushed berries OR berry powder (e.g. PP). Berries are just as cheap as berry powder.
Pop it in the shaker and presto a balanced nutritionally superb meal. Can't beat it.
Whats so good?
1. Balanced protein vs. carb intake. Its 1:1 and its hard to hit that any other way.
2. Balanced omega6 vs. omega 3 (seed mix)
3. Balanced vits/minerals/adaptogens and my mix tastes so bad I can't stomach it any other way.
4. Ultra-low saturated fat
5. Good fibre (oats)
6. You can always top it with mono-fats if you want
7. If you want slow release just add milk,
8. If you want cholesterol add an egg or two.
9. Loads of anti-oxidants in the berries.
Why is that so bad? Why try and set an 'all food' agenda? Making a nutritionally balanced whole food agenda ain't easy. Shakes make life simple and a great breakfast.
09-03-2009, 02:44 PM
thats not even counting the partial proteins from nuts and oats/br rice.
jsut takes a little work and planning thats all
09-03-2009, 04:35 PM
Wait (above) there might be a misunderstanding.
300g of protein is not 300g e.g. chicken.
1kg chicken = 300g protein
1kg beef = 200g (I think it could be less)
Chicken has one of the highest proportions of protein to weight for whole food.
Protein powder has an extremely high proportion of protein to weight, much higher than whole food.
Okay if you eat 1kg of chicken per day no problem, if you don't powder supplements will help.
Its a regular part of my routine and I'd recommend using powder supplements to anyone.
09-03-2009, 05:22 PM
you are correct...with proper planning it is very possible to get all your protein requirements from food...i could even make the argument that the post workout shake isnt needed.....and ive done this...ive been in this game for a long time....ive done all whole food, ive done half and half and ive done mostly shakes with just a couple whole food meals....and honestly in my experience as long as i kept my calories consistent whether they were liquid cals or whole food cals made no difference in my gains.
09-03-2009, 05:36 PM
I say do whatever it takes, for you to be able to get your calories CONSISTENTLY. If you can get 6-7 whole food meals in, day in, day out, without ever getting burned out on it, or missing a meal, more power to you.
I personally drink atleast 2-3 shakes a day, but my fats, and carbs(when i eat them) come from whole food.
Just get your calories in, every day, in whichever fashion allows you to be the most consistent.
09-03-2009, 05:52 PM
09-03-2009, 09:38 PM
09-04-2009, 02:36 AM
lololololololol dude im not evan gana crack this one cuz thers 10+ threads that will make u eat yer words, first of all i own 80+ hens, second bio-availablilty hahaha wow, who cares about that all that matters is nitrogen retention value or wat ever that correct name is but the egg has a value of 100 which is the highst. when u eat a raw egg or cookd u still get all the protine content, the only thing ur not getting with a raw egg is biotin.
and raw eggs are about 3% less bio avalible than cookd
and the cholesterol thing has allready been debunkd there is no link to high cholesterol and eggs because the cholesterol in eggs is the good kind
09-04-2009, 02:59 AM
Protein shakes are good post workout. If I drink a protein shake any other time of the day I'll be hungry in less than an hour. Whole foods keep me full and is more cost efficient.
I do have a shake for emergencies and sometimes before going out to dinner. I also try to pack a can of tuna in my gym bag; prefer the tuna over the shake.
Speaking of food I just had some tuna salad. Man I love that stuff.
09-04-2009, 06:06 AM
My thoughts were that plant based cholesterol was low density and animal based high but I could be wrong.
Generally though I more or less take your point that high cholesterol (in the blood) has far more to do than simply dietary intake, its about exercise and all sorts of stuff.
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