Whey protein is an essential when talking about bodybuilding supplements. You would really have to search hard to find a dude in the gym that isn’t at downing a shaker cup filled with protein. It’s the bare-bone basics of muscle building, the protein. As I already mentioned in the preworkout article, the fitness industry is all about marketing these days. Companies are trying to outdo each other in a very niche market where, essentially, everyone is selling the same product. So naturally, companies then make it not about the product but the person promoting it or the brand representing the product.
Now before we get into “the what’s”, “the why’s and “the how’s” of whey protein let’s take it back to where it all began.
Cows give milk, which after it gets filtrated to various dairy products like yogurts or cheese, leave a factory byproduct. Those factory byproducts are whey and casein proteins. Yep, the gainz giving nectar of the cows is basically just an industrial waste. The percentage ratio of protein in cow’s milk is 80/20 in favor of casein over whey. Which kinda raises the question of; why the fu*k is casein so damn expensive??? Moving along, despite being glorified industrial waste whey is still essential in muscle building. It’s still protein and it’s still impossible to grow muscle without consuming at least some protein. That is until Bane’s venom serum becomes a real thing
Since I mentioned casein above, it won’t do any harm in dropping a few lines about whey protein’s big brother, Casein. Unlike whey, Casein is a slow release/digestion type of protein. He doesn’t go immediately into the bloodstream, he creates a gel-like substance in your gut and slooowly releases amino acids into your body over a period of several hours. That’s why it’s often called a “night time” protein, because of its properties it’s ideal to drink before going to sleep.
Ok, now let’s talk some more about the star of our article the whey protein. It enters the bloodstream fast and hard and it’s an ideal post-workout supplement because you need to give your body the needed dosage of amino acids that will allow your muscles to grow and make that loose t-shirt feel like it’s two sizes too small.
When and How Often
The simplest answer is “any time you want” and “as much as you like”. Often you will hear guys say that the best time to down a protein shake is as soon as you drop the weight but no later than an hour after the workout has finished. This is the famed “anabolic window”.
The theory goes that if you drink your shake no later than an hour after your workout, you might as well throw the shake in the trash. Despite this being a hilarious bro science “fact”, the sooner your feed your muscles the better. Also, yes you can drink whey even if you did not work out, it is protein after all.
Which Whey to Go
As I mentioned in the opening sentences of this article, the entire supplement industry is a giant popularity contest and the prettiest looking girl always wins. Which makes buying a quality product a difficult process. So in order to make your life a lot easier, I decided to make a quick rundown of quality protein brands that are either highly regarded or I personally tried them and recommend. Not that my recommendation should stand for anything, but at least I will give you names you can google later on and figure out for yourself if they’re legit.
“ON” is a classic one, it’s highly regarded in quality and tastes pretty damn good. It mixes well with anything you want, water, milk, beer, whiskey…take your pick. It’s only real flaw is its price tag, but the others on this list aren’t any better in that department, sooo…yeah.
2. MVP Nutrition
I avoided this brand for the longest time because it always seemed a bit too pricey and overrated. I don’t know why really, something about their label didn’t really sit well with me. However, gave them a shot recently and they’re really a high-quality whey protein. Both in taste, water solubility, and quality.
Weider is an absolute classic. It’s expensive but also one of the best whey proteins on the market. If you want high-quality whey and you are prepared to spit out the dough, grab yourself some Weider’s whey protein.
This is probably the best “budget” whey protein. “MP” offers tasteless proteins for people who don’t give a crap about sweeteners and taste and just to down the protein hardcore style. This is really your best choice for a top tier protein that doesn’t require you to sell a kidney in order to afford it.
5. Scitec Nutrition
Scitec falls under the category of one of those expensive but highly regarded among users as having high quality. There’s no other way around it, they cost the big bucks but they deliver results.
Quick Tip For The Road
Always, and I do mean always check the ingredient list and the protein content on the label. Aim that the product you purchase isn’t just spiked with cheap amino acids. Buy stuff that has at least an 80% content of pure whey protein and aim to get 100% whey as often as possible. It’s often the most expensive choice but if you wanna get big, you gotta spend the big bucks. Skip a weekend or two a month and you’ll have more than enough to buy a 5-pound bucket of 100% whey.