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Protein Smoothies: Are you Doing Them Right?

There is nothing better than a cool protein smoothie after a hard and sweaty workout. Just get your scoop of protein, some fruit juice or milk and you’re ready to go. At least, that’s what most people think. As it turns out, most people have no idea what they are supposed to get in their protein smoothies. They follow the directions on the container and take them at face value, not knowing that these directions are generic and may not have their specific best interests in mind.

The average person has no idea what their smoothie is supposed to do for their bodies. Don’t be one of the many that fall into this category and you will see the benefits of one of your easiest meals of the day.

Not Enough Protein

Ask 10 people if they are getting enough protein, most would say that they are; pretty confidently. The problem is that they likely are not. Trainees often overestimate how much protein they are getting because they feel that 3 servings of meat a day is sufficient. To some, that may be true, but certainly not for everyone.

The Food and nutrition board says that you should be taking in about .36g of protein per pound of bodyweight. If your goal is merely survival, this number may work for you. If, however, your goal is to not only survive but to thrive, this falls extremely short of the recommended amount. Athletes and active people should be taking in about .75g of protein per pound of body weight for males and .65 for females. This will ensure that you are not only getting enough protein to repair the muscle from strenuous activity, but also to build muscle mass.

You should make sure that you are not only getting enough protein from your smoothies, but your regular meals as well. The more meals you eat, the less protein you will have to eat at each meal. Protein takes a very long time.

Example: You are a 198lbs Man. You eat 6 meals per day.198 x 0.75 = 148g of protein per day. 148/6 = 25g of protein per meal

This example is very idealistic in the sense that most will hardly ever eat 6 meals a day and so this number should just be used for illustration purposes.

Now that you know how much protein you should be eating every meal. You should make sure that all your meals have about this much protein, even your after workout meals/snacks. In this case, 25g would be about one serving or one scoop of protein to add to your smoothie.

Too Generic

Smoothies include a few basic ingredients: protein, flavor, and ice. These ingredients are simple and will make sure that your smoothie is enjoyable. Unfortunately, it doesn’t necessarily make it very effective. A smoothie is an opportunity to have a simple and very nourishing meal that is both easy to digest and easy to ‘eat’. There are a lot of opportunities for growth that are missed if you aren’t addressing the specific needs of your body through your smoothies, especially your post-workout smoothie.

You can drink a smoothie at different times. The most common times are either as a meal replacement or as a post-workout meal.

After a workout, the body is most receptive to vitamins and nutrients. It’s with this in mind that you should add other supplements to your smoothie in order to enhance its’ effects.

If you are trying to gain strength, you should add creatine or amino acids. We recommend Power Blendz Strength, it has all the ingredients you need to both recover and get stronger for your next workout, including creatine and amino acids.

If your goals are decomposition or fat loss, you should add a supplement like Fat Burner to a smoothie of your choice. Whatever your goals, make sure that your smoothie complements them.

Wrong One at Wrong Time

You may be one of the few that makes their smoothies specific to their goals, makes sure it has enough protein, and you can even make a few fancy flavors. Even with this level of proficiency, people still make one big mistake: they take the wrong smoothie at the wrong time. As previously stated, a smoothie has to align with your goals or you are missing a big opportunity. Some will make a fat burning smoothie near bedtime as a meal supplement, the problem with this is that fat burning supplements often have stimulants in them, which will keep you awake if taken at bedtime. If you want to take a protein during bedtime, casein protein is your best option. It’s slow absorption makes it great for a nighttime snack. Digestion is slower while you sleep and casein digests much slower than other proteins. This allows it to provide a constant source of nourishing protein while you sleep. Some state that casein even helps them sleep better because they aren’t hungry in the middle of the night.

Another mistake is that people will take the wrong type of protein for their goals. Unless you are lactose intolerant, whey protein is going to be the most optimal protein for post-exercise recovery. It has both the fastest absorption time as well as among the highest bioavailability of any other protein. Specifically, whey protein isolate is great for a post-workout meal. This protein digests fast and provides a wide array of amino acids that are essential for muscle growth.

If you are lactose intolerant, whey protein would not be a good option for you. Though whey protein isolate has a very low amount of lactose in it, this would not be an ideal option for someone sensitive to it. That is when you should use alternatives. Beef protein, egg protein, and plant-based protein powders are alternative options for those that can’t use milk products. It is worth noting that plant-based sources do not have a very high bioavailability of protein and so if you are on a high protein diet, you will have to take this into account and make sure that you are getting enough. For the purpose of this article, we won’t go very in-depth on bioavailability of protein as it is a topic that needs much explanation.

What to do With This Information

Follow the three most important rules of protein smoothies and you will be more successful at smoothie making. Make sure that the smoothies you make address your correct protein needs, nutrition needs, and are delivered at the appropriate time. This will speed up your progress and allow you better recovery and strength than if you were to just create a generic smoothie.

Want help finding the right diet for you?

If you’d like to stop stressing over the details and find a way to get control of your food choices while creating a healthier lifestyle, check us out at Power 3 Fitness Coaching.

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