So, what is all of the fuss about protein powder and this one in particular? Let’s get the ‘scoop’, shall we?
Garden of Life Raw Organic Protein, featured this week, is a Certified Organic, raw, vegan protein powder that tastes great. Featuring 13 raw and organic sprouts, Raw Organic Protein is an excellent source of complete protein—providing 22 grams per serving—including all essential amino acids. It contains fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K and supports digestive health and function with live probiotics and protein-digesting enzymes. According to Garden of Life, “raw” protein matters because heat can denature proteins, reducing their availability to your body. They produce this line of powers at low temperatures, without any added fillers or carriers, preserving their complete amino acid integrity and whole-food, Certified Organic, Non-GMO goodness.
The Power of Protein Powder
So, why use protein powder in the first place? Surely a healthy, balanced diet will supply plenty of protein, right? In most cases, yes, but this isn’t always true, especially if you’re trying to put on a lot of muscle. Let’s think for a moment about how getting stronger works. When you put your body through strenuous exercise, it is inevitable that you will tear some of your muscle fibers. These tears can be large enough to result in a noticeable injury, but they’re mostly microscopic, leading to the aches and pains associated with a good workout. Our muscles are made up of thousands of bundles of these fibrous proteins; when these fibers are torn during a workout and subsequently heal, the resulting fibers are both thicker and more durable. Tear and heal them enough times, and you end up with defined, durable muscles.
But that is only part of building muscle. Any fitness coach worth their salt will tell you that to really get fit, it starts in the kitchen. A healthy, balanced diet and appropriate caloric intake is key to achieving any fitness goal, and protein powder offers the perfect shortcut! If rebuilding muscles made of protein requires more protein, then depending on your level of fitness, your protein needs may far exceed what you can reasonably prepare during the day. Supplementing your diet with a high-quality protein powder, even with a strict vegan diet, can save you both time and money.
Sadly, not all protein powders are created equal. Protein powders fall under the category of “supplements”, not food, and as such aren’t regulated in the same way as food items. While the Wellness Team at Oliver’s works to ensure all protein powders we carry meet the highest standards of quality, this is an area where it pays to read labels and know your producer. Of course, the Wellness Department staff at our stores are happy to answer any questions about Protein Powders to find the best one for your specific needs, so don’t hesitate to ask for assistance.
Great Ways to Add Protein Powder to your Diet
Once you pick your ideal protein powder, it’s time to get creative! Even the best of protein powders can have a gritty texture, so getting beyond shaking a scoop or two of powder in a bottle with your liquid of choice is an ‘exercise’ worth doing!
We’ve got some really cool recipes this week using Garden of Life Raw Organic Protein Powder. Check out these Grab n’ Go Breakfast Bars, Sheet Pancakes, or a Nutty Bar Breakfast Smoothie to get your day off to a great start. You can also incorporate this product into other foods during the day, like this Vegan Ranch Dip.
Here are some other great tips and simple recipes for incorporating protein powder into your day:
- Blend 1 scoop vanilla protein powder with 1 teaspoon Matcha powder, 2 frozen bananas, and 1 cup almond milk for an energizing, pre-workout shake.
- Add a scoop or two to a green smoothie bowl for a filling breakfast.
- Replace 2 tablespoons of flour in a baking recipe with an equal amount of vanilla protein powder.
- Blend 2 scoops chocolate protein powder, two frozen bananas, 2 tablespoons peanut butter, and 1 cup almond milk for an ultra-high protein post-workout shake.
- Combine ¼ cup chia seeds, two scoops vanilla or chocolate protein powder, and your favorite milk or dairy alternative in a blender for easy protein pudding.
- Make a batch of protein fudge for energizing, on-the-go snacks
- Stir together 3 cups milk or your favorite non-dairy milk with 2 scoops chocolate protein powder, 1 tablespoon cocoa powder, and 1 teaspoon sugar or stevia on medium heat for protein-packed hot cocoa.
- Add to popsicles for a post-workout treat.
Protein powder is a fantastic way to up your protein intake and take charge of your fitness goals, and with this week’s amazing sale on Garden of Life Raw Organic Protein, there’s never been a better time to up your recipe game — or just get started! This delicious vegan, certified organic line of protein powders is a great addition to any fitness-oriented lifestyle.