Like other dietary supplements, protein powder isn't regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It's best to choose protein powders that have gone through third-party testing to ensure that the product is what the manufacturer says it is. Protein powder is essentially a supplemental form of protein (from now on we'll call them “protein supplements”). They are not standardized or regulated, and their composition varies greatly.
Not all protein powders are created the same way. The different types can include whey protein isolates, whey protein concentrates, whey protein hydrolysate, casein, and plant-based powders. These supplements are made by extracting protein from animal or plant sources that range from dairy products, eggs, soy, peas, hemp or rice. In most cases, fiber, fats, vitamins, minerals, and natural carbohydrates are eliminated during processing.
Many protein supplements also contain additives, flavors, and fillers. When deciding if you could benefit from using a protein supplement, considering how much protein you need is an important factor. Most people can get enough protein through their diet without needing a protein supplement. In fact, many people tend to overdo protein when they add a protein powder supplement to their daily food intake.
However, protein supplements may be useful for people who have difficulty meeting their daily protein needs, especially those with higher protein needs, such as those receiving treatment for cancer, those who are recovering from a burn or surgery, patients with chronic diseases, and athletes. Protein supplements can also be useful for those who don't feel like eating the amount of protein foods they need. To reiterate, there are many circumstances that justify the use of protein supplements. In addition, many people choose to use a protein supplement out of preference, convenience, and many report a feeling of fullness with the use of protein supplements.
While meeting daily protein needs and combining them with meals and snacks has clear advantages, consuming additional protein isn't necessarily better. The body doesn't always use excess protein efficiently, whether from food or supplements, and more protein doesn't equal more muscle. In addition, excess protein can cause excess calories. The extra calories, whether from protein, fat, or carbohydrates, are stored in the body.
Excess protein can be especially problematic if it displaces the necessary carbohydrates and fats in the diet. In addition, protein supplements can cause digestive disorders such as bloating, gas, stomach cramps and diarrhea. Protein powders are forms of protein powder that come from plants (soy, peas, rice, potatoes, or hemp), eggs, or milk (casein or whey protein). Most people can get enough protein through the foods they eat, but there are circumstances in which supplementing with protein powder may be beneficial.
Perfect Day, the startup that uses fermentation to create animal-free dairy proteins, has officially received approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its patented whey protein.