WHY PROTEIN CAN HELP YOU TONE
Women are far less likely to have tried protein powders than men. With protein having toning benefits for men and women alike, we think it’s time that changed!
Protein is a natural component of our bodies – the second most abundant after water. It’s an essential nutrient that our bodies need to feed our muscles and support their maintenance and development. When we work out, we strain our muscles. Our bodies then naturally send protein to reinvigorate them – this is why protein helps you tone up (and why most nutrition experts recommend protein shortly after exercise).
Throw back to your school biology classes and you might remember that protein is made up of smaller components, called amino acids. There are about 20 different amino acids that can form a protein. Eight of these can’t be produced by our bodies on their own, so we need to get them through nutrition. These are called essential amino acids.
Here’s the geeky bit: a protein must contain all 8 of these essential amino acids in roughly equal amounts to be considered ‘complete’. Complete proteins are used by our bodies more effectively (so not all protein is created equal!) Nutritionists tend to recommend a varied diet because a lot of our protein sources aren’t complete, so need balancing out – meat and eggs are complete proteins, but beans and nuts aren’t, for example.
With that said, it’s fairly easy to get enough complete protein without eating meat – eggs and dairy are complete, making it easier for vegetarians. For the plant-based among us, it is critical to find the right sources to give you a complete protein profile. Soy is known to be one of the best plant sources as it is a complete protein with a similar protein profile to meat.
Boots Mbody Superfood + Plant Protein Powders are based on soy protein, which comes from the soya bean plant. This is part of the pea family and is a complete protein, being high in a range of essential amino acids. The composition of soy plant protein is similar to animal protein, which makes it one of the best vegan sources of protein. There are alternative plant proteins, such as pea, used in other protein powders, but some of these tend not to be complete proteins.
Boots Mbody Natural Whey Protein Powders are made from whey protein, which comes from milk. It used to be considered a waste by-product of cheese production, but is naturally high in protein.
You may find conflicting advice and different opinions on how much protein women need, with sources stating anything from 45 – 65g.
Without exercise, the official nutritionist recommendation is for women to get about 45g protein per day. However, if you’re looking to tone up, you should be doing muscle strengthening exercises (check out our handy workout page) and taking on more protein. The two are interlinked – we need to make our muscles work for protein to be most effectively used by our bodies. The British Dietetic Association further recommends around 20g of protein in addition to your normal healthy intake to support a workout. That’s why you’ll sometimes see recommended levels higher than 45g in association to works.
It can be hard to know exactly how much protein is contained in foods, but protein shakes can be a convenient way to be in control of your proteins when working out, especially if you are short on time. Protein shakes can also be a good solution for those trying to reduce their meat intake, providing an alternative source of protein. Always remember a healthy balanced diet with enough energy will also support your work-out routine.
Boots Mbody powders have been developed by nutrition experts to contain just the right amount of complete protein to support your work-out. All our proteins come from natural sources and help achieve lean, toned muscle.* Our range offers a choice of either plant protein (from soya bean, with no animal derived ingredients) or natural whey protein (from milk) so you can choose what’s right for you and your lifestyle.
The best time to support your muscles with a protein boost is right after a work-out, but you can also enjoy our shakes with breakfast or as a healthy snack as part of a balanced diet.
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*Protein contributes to the maintenance of muscle mass.