Whey Protein vs Soy Protein: Which Is Better for Your Health and Fitness Goals?
Innovative weight loss trends (backed by science, of course) are changing the way people all over the world eat. One of the core food groups currently receiving a lot of social press is protein. Whether you are vegetarian, vegan, keto, or just trying to find the best nutrition plan for your body, soy protein and whey protein are great ways to add a little extra bulk to your diet. Plus, if you’re looking to lose weight and build muscle, protein is a must! But which protein supplement is better for your health and fitness goals? Soy or whey?
Here’s everything you need to know about soy vs. whey protein. But first, let’s discuss the importance of protein in your diet.
How Important is Protein?
Getting enough protein in your diet is critical for your overall health and body functions. Found in each cell of the human body, protein is utilized to create hormones, repair muscle tissue, and make new enzymes. Since every protein molecule is full of amino acids, without the proper amount of protein, your immune system weakens and your bones become more brittle, making you more prone to injuries like fractures.
Although protein is important for everyone, it is especially important for people engaging in strenuous physical activity. The more physical activity you engage in on a daily basis, the more protein your body needs.
Many people think that the only way to get protein in your diet is by eating meat or fish, but it can also come from milk and even some plants. Often, this type of protein can be found in a powder form, and it is the perfect additive to milk, water, or even smoothies.
Whey Protein vs. Soy Protein
You may be wondering what protein is best for you. The truth is that both have their benefits, and it is up to you to decide which protein supplement best fits your diet.
Soy protein is a plant-based protein found in soybeans. Making this protein requires grinding soybeans into a powder containing between 90-95% protein. Soy protein can come in a variety of flavors and is said to have a strong nutty flavor compared to whey protein.
There are numerous benefits of consuming soy protein, including:
- It’s perfect for vegans or people with allergies. If you are vegan or are allergic to lactose, soy protein is a great option for you. This protein is made entirely from plants; therefore, it is perfect for individuals following a plant-based diet or those who are allergic to lactose or dairy.
- It’s nutrient-rich. Soy protein is filled with calcium, which is great for your bones. It also contains all the essential amino acids that your body needs plus the branched-chain amino acids, making it more dense with nutrients than any animal-based protein.
- It’s low in fat and cholesterol. If you’re trying to watch your fat or cholesterol intake, soy protein may be a good option for you. This plant protein is low in both, making it a perfect choice for those on low-fat diets or for individuals with high cholesterol.
- It’s dissoluble. There are many methods to ingest soy protein, but some of the most common ways are through shakes or smoothies. Soy protein dissolves in seconds in water or milk, making it easy to take a soy protein shake on the go. Many individuals also add it to their daily smoothies for an extra protein boost.
Whey protein comes from cows. When milk from cows is pasteurized, it is separated into two different proteins: casein and whey. Whey protein then undergoes further processing to remove water, fat, and carbs. This transforms the protein into a powder. Lactose is removed during processing, but there still may be trace amounts found within the powder, making it not fully lactose-free.
Some of the benefits of whey protein include:
- It’s good for weight loss. Numerous studies have pointed to whey protein as a great way for overweight patients to lose weight.
- It’s naturally abundant. Adding whey protein to your diet will boost the number of amino acids and calcium you are receiving, helping your bones to grow stronger and your muscles to become more compact.
- It enhances athleticism. Athletes report higher endurance and an increase in strength and muscle mass upon utilizing whey protein as a dietary supplement.
- It absorbs quickly. Whey protein powder can be added to all your favorite smoothies or drank in shake form by dissolving it in water or milk, making it easy to take it on the go.
Soy Protein vs. Why Protein: Which is Better?
Both soy protein and whey protein have numerous benefits. The difference is based on personal preference. Whey protein tends to have a smoother texture and is a bit thicker when added to drinks or smoothies, while soy protein can be a bit grainier. Aside from flavor and dietary restrictions, both are excellent sources of nutrients and can help ensure that you are getting enough protein in your daily diet. Check out our variety of protein supplements and powders available at Nutmeg State Nutrition.