Soy Protein Isolate Powder: What Is It?
The main purpose of soy protein isolate is to provide the body with amino acids, which are essential for growth and repair. In addition, it contains other nutrients such as glutamine, B vitamins, calcium and iron. The most common form of soy protein isolate is known as casein or whey protein concentrate. Whey proteins have been used since ancient times because they are easier to digest than milk proteins (casein). They contain less fat and calories than cow’s milk. However, there are many types of soy protein isolates available today, including pea, hemp, flaxseed and even rice protein isolate. All these different forms of soy protein isolate are made from one basic ingredient – soybeans.
How Does It Work?
There are two ways in which the body uses dietary proteins: digestion or absorption. Digestion occurs when the digestive enzymes break down the food into smaller pieces. Absorption happens when the absorbed amino acids enter your bloodstream directly where they are then used for energy production.
Amino acid is a group of four molecules containing three carbon atoms and one hydrogen atom. These molecules include all essential amino acids required for human health, including those found in meat, fish and dairy products. In addition, animal sources of protein also contain non-essential amino acids which can also be found in plant-based foods.
The body requires protein every day for new cell growth and repair. When you eat more protein, your body may use or store it as fat. However, the amount of extra protein that is turned into fat is low if exercise is part of your routine. Eating the right amount of protein is important for building and maintaining a strong body. It gives you energy for your physical activities and helps your muscles grow stronger.
Why Is It Important?
Proteins are made up of amino acids. There are 22 types of amino acids, 9 of which the body cannot produce on its own so we need to take them in through food sources. It is these 9 amino acids that we call ‘essential amino acids’ (EAAs). The first three letters of each amino acid tell you whether it’s an EAA or not. For example, leucine is one of the EAAs, and it is referred to as an EAA because the first letter in its name (“leu”) refers to “L” in the word essential.
EAAs are necessary for the human body to work properly. They allow the body to create and repair muscle tissue, maintain bones and keep the heart working efficiently. It is also believed that the EAA tryptophan helps the body develop serotonin, a neurotransmitter that affects mood.
However, it’s not just about building muscle – it’s also about shedding those pounds you might be carrying around. You see, your body has a clever way of gaining and losing weight. To lose weight, it has to be in a “starvation” mode, which means that it starts eating away at your muscle tissue before it goes for the fat cells. This is why people tend to get thin but weak when they are on extreme diets: without proper amino acids, their body starts eating away at their muscles. To avoid this from happening, make sure you get enough protein every day.
How Much Protein Do You Need?
The amount of protein your body needs depends on your age, size, how much you exercise and your overall health. The average sedentary adult, aged 19 to 70, should get about 0.8 grams of protein per kg of body weight (or 1.2 grams of protein per lb). If you’re physically active, you should have about 1.0 to 1.2 grams per kg of body weight. If you’re seriously overweight, aim for 1.2 to 1.5 grams per kg of body weight.
If you weigh 150 lbs., the average proteins per day you need are 90 grams a day if you’re sedentary and 120 grams if you’re physically active.
There are a wide variety of foods that contain high quality protein, and many of these foods also contain other essential nutrients (fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals).
Meats, Poultry, Fish, Shellfish and Eggs
Some examples of animal-derived foods that contain protein include:
Red meats (beef, lamb, veal, venison)
Poultry (chicken, turkey)
Fish (tuna, mackerel, bass, salmon, haddock)
Shellfish (shrimp, scallops)
Eggs (especially egg whites)
Meat alternatives such as tofu, tempeh, seitan
Dairy and Dairy Substitutes
Some examples of foods that are derived from milk and milk products include:
Yogurt (regular or frozen yogurt)
Milk (whole, 2%, 1%, skim or condensed milk)
Ice Cream (regular or light)
Cream (heavy, light or whipping cream)
Half and Half
Yogurt (regular, frozen or with fruit)
Non-Meat Protein Sources
Some examples of plant-based foods that contain high quality protein include:
Seitan (also called wheat gluten)
Tempeh (a fermented soy product)
Textured Vegetable Protein (a.k.a. T.V.P.
or soy meat)
Beans (such as Kidney, Black, Pinto, Navy, Cranberry and Garbanzo)
Grains (such as whole grain breads and pastas)
Nuts and Seeds (such as Almonds, Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Pistachios and Sunflower seeds)
Fruits and Vegetables
Add more high quality protein to your diet by eating a variety of high protein foods such as:
Tips for Getting Enough Protein
You can easily get enough protein by eating a variety of the foods listed above. If you’re eating a varied diet, then you probably don’t need to worry about getting enough protein. That being said, there are some tips that can help you get the most out of the protein you eat.
Eat protein-rich foods before you work out to give your muscles a quick supply of amino acids.
Try to eat some protein-rich food before and after your workouts.
Whenever possible, eat protein-dense foods (especially in the morning and at night) because these are more likely to keep you full and satisfied.
Keep track of how much protein your eating every day so you know your getting the right amount.
Find out how much protein you need by checking with your doctor.
If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, it’s extra important that you find good sources of protein in your diet.
If you need extra help to meet your nutritional needs, try drinking protein shakes and bars.
If you’re having a hard time getting enough high quality protein in your diet, speak with a doctor or dietician.
Protein Powder: Pros and Cons
Protein supplements are easy to take and convenient to use, but they’re not right for everyone. It’s important to consider the pros and cons before adding a protein supplement to your diet.
Protein supplements are based on a good ratio of amino acids, so they’re just as effective for building muscle as food sources (assuming you choose a good one).
They can easily be added to other foods or drinks (such as milk, fruit juice or yogurt). This makes it easy to gain extra protein throughout the day.
They can be taken anywhere (such as work or school) since they don’t need to be prepared or eaten at a certain time.
Liquid protein supplements are easy on the digestive system (therefore making it easier to adjust to more solid food sources).
Protein supplements are generally more expensive than food sources of protein.
They are usually packed with sugar and carbohydrates which can lead to weight gain.
They don’t taste as good as food sources of protein (in some cases, they can taste very bad).
Sometimes the ingredients in the protein supplement can cause allergic reactions.
Some people just prefer food-based sources over supplements, no matter how convenient they are.
Protein Supplements and Athletes
When used correctly, a good protein supplement can help any athlete pack on extra muscle mass. However, it’s important to remember that supplements are not a substitute for proper diet and exercise. No matter how effective the supplement is, if you eat like a slob then you won’t gain any muscle mass. Likewise, even the best supplement won’t build up muscle if you don’t work out.
If you’re looking for a good protein supplement, then there are many options available. The most common one is whey protein since it’s fairly easy on the stomach and is a popular choice among many athletes. There are other sources of protein as well, such as casein, so speak with a nutritionist or check the nutrition labels before buying a supplement.
In general, drinking protein shakes straight after exercise is the best way to use them. This is because your body is already prepared to quickly absorb nutrients at this time. You can also try drinking one every 2-3 hours before or after a workout (but not at the same time as a meal).
For people with weight loss in mind, there are special types of protein supplements available. These shakes contain only small amounts of fat and carbohydrates but still have enough taste to be enjoyable. Some of these are better than others though, so do your research before spending money on them.
In any case, just remember that the more serious you are about your training, the more serious you should be about your diet. Supplements can help when used properly, but a proper diet should always come first.
Onward and upward to bigger gains!
Next Lesson: Workout Routines
Workout routines can help keep you motivated and on track.
Bookmark This Page
Sources & references used in this article:
Structure and properties of soy protein plastics plasticized with acetamide by D Liu, L Zhang – Macromolecular Materials and Engineering, 2006 – Wiley Online Library
Functional and edible uses of soy protein products by P Singh, R Kumar, SN Sabapathy… – … reviews in food science …, 2008 – Wiley Online Library
A comparison of the buttermilk solids functional properties to nonfat dried milk, soy protein isolate, dried egg white, and egg yolk powders by PYY Wong, DD Kitts – Journal of Dairy Science, 2003 – Elsevier
Rheological properties of food gums as related to their water binding capacity and to soy protein interaction by VE Sánchez, GB Bartholomai, AMR Pilosof – LWT-Food Science and …, 1995 – Elsevier
Gluten-free flat bread and biscuits production by cassava, extruded soy protein and pumpkin powder by MMA Aly, HA Seleem – Food and Nutrition Sciences, 2015 – scirp.org