Are Protein Shakes Safe?
I get that question a lot. And for good reason.
There’s a common misconception that drinking protein shakes will make you “bulky”.
For the most part, and with good reason, this is of particular concern for my female clients.
Protein shakes are generally associated with bodybuilders and weightlifters. A look most women don’t want to achieve.
So, that begs the question, are protein shakes safe and should you drink them?
The most common type of protein shake is Whey protein. This is the one I recommend most to my clients – providing they aren’t lactose intolerant. So for that reason, we are going to focus our attention
Whey protein is a healthy protein source and is a natural food. It is a dairy product that is isolated during the cheese making process.
Bonus fact: Around 60% of human breast milk is actually whey protein.
Whey protein is also used in a variety of food products.
A quick look at SMA’s First Infant Milk and you’ll realise that it is the 3rd ingredient on the list.
So, it’s interesting that we as adults worry about the safety of consuming whey ourselves when we were likely fed it as babies.
To change this mindset, try thinking of whey protein as a food group rather than a supplement.
The reality is that it’s no different from any other dairy foods.
So, whey protein is safe for human consumption.
BUT do you need to take it to reach your fat loss goals?
Nope. Not if you don’t want to. It is not essential nor is it completely necessary.
As we spoke about in previous posts, we have a range of 1.2-2 grams per kilo of bodyweight as our daily protein target. (This depends on your goals and preferences.)
Providing you consume enough protein, you’re good to go.
So a 60kg woman would aim for between 72-120 grams of protein per day.
Because your protein intake needs to be a little higher, many of my clients find whey protein shakes useful.
They are convenient, relatively cheap and if you buy the right flavour, pretty damn tasty.
Most whey protein powders provide 20 grams of protein per 100 calories. This is an excellent ratio – particularly when fat loss is the goal. (think high protein to calorie ratio).
Whey protein shakes may allow you to git your daily goals more consistently – a major factor in achieving your goals.
So, yes, whey protein is safe. But no, you don’t have to use it. That said, many of my clients find it useful in helping them stay on track. Only you can decide if it’s the right option for you.