Whey Protein Powder Supplement Uses
Learn how to use whey protein to get the most benefits for gaining muscle, weight loss and health!
You may want to know how to use whey protein for building muscle, weight loss or just using it as a health supplement. It can be used for multiple purposes, but it helps to know a few tips on how to best utilize it and also when to take whey protein for the optimal results.
First things first…what are your goals?
How to Use Whey Protein for Muscle Building
Ok you probably know muscle is made up of protein (and water), so to build more muscle it helps to add more protein to your diet. But just adding more protein won’t pack on more muscle – you need to intensely exercise your muscles in order for them to demand the protein they need.
How Much Whey Protein
For muscle building, a general rule is one gram of protein for every one pound of bodyweight. You will never find a definitive answer to this question because everybody is different. The intensity of the workout, your metabolism and even quality of protein will all affect the right amount for you. So listen to your body, and make sure you are using the best whey protein powder you can get.
When to Take Whey Protein
For muscle building, the timing is very important when considering how to use whey protein. Remember you need a lot, but the most important time to take it is immediately following a workout. Combine it with a carbohydrate (a banana works well) to raise insulin to help shuttle nutrients in to repair your muscles. You have about 1 hour to do this, but the sooner the better.
Other good times to take protein are right when you wake up (you can combine with carb and fat for full meal) and before bed (no carbs). If you wish, you can use whey protein an hour or two before a workout, but once again make sure to listen to your body – some people handle this quite well and others don’t.
How to Use Whey Protein for Weight Loss and Burning Fat
Using protein is a great way to help with losing fat. Use the information on my whey protein diet article to help you understand WHY it helps you burn fat!
How much Whey Protein
For weight loss you will need much less protein compared to building muscle and this will vary widely depending on your metabolism and activity. Probably no more than 0.5 grams per pound of body weight, although more will not hurt you, it’s just not necessary.
When to Take Whey Protein
For fat loss an ideal use is for meal replacements – replacing any high carbohydrate meal. For example, use a protein shake for breakfast instead of cereal or toast. Have a shake one hour after a cardio workout, no sooner.
You want to let your body continue burning fat after the workout as it does this efficiently for an hour post workout. Don’t go longer than an hour, as your metabolism may slow down (causing less fat burning) if your body thinks it’s being starved.
How to Use Whey Protein for Health
Some of the components in whey protein are truly incredible for promoting health and boosting immune system function. See my article on all the health benefits of whey protein for more info.
How Much Whey Protein and When to Take?
When supplementing for health reasons, there is no prescribed dose necessary. The goal here is simply to supply your body with what it needs, and to use whey protein as a convenient way to do so. You clearly can be healthy without whey, it just makes life easier.
Personally I use one scoop for a breakfast shake along with some raw eggs, coconut milk and a banana to replace the less healthy meal I used to have. And it keeps me full for 4-6 hours. On workout days I will follow the advice above and use whey following a workout depending on whether it’s a weight training or cardio day.
If you are using whey protein as a health supplement, you most likely won’t be taking extremely large doses and may want to consider a healthier (although more expensive) option and go for a truly undenatured whey protein, as these will contain much higher nutrients and will be sourced from healthy grass fed cows.