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Matthew Kramer 03-21-2010 05:04 AM

Protein powder recommendations
Does anyone have any recommendation as far as which protein isolate to buy??

Wayne Riddle 03-21-2010 11:58 AM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
I'm just finishing up a tub of 100% Whey Gold Standard (WFS), which I've been happy with. Getting ready to try Nitrean (WFS) next, basedon posts here.

Jarrett Link 03-21-2010 02:09 PM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
Assuming you're just occasionally SUPPLEMENTING with whey protein and the majority of your diet is in good order, I think the general rule of thumb is to just go with the cheapest whey you can find that has the least amount of artificial ingredients.

From what I've read (maybe from Mark's Daily Apple), the difference between Isolate and Concentrate is overstated and is primarily a marketing ploy.

With that said, my standby protein is Optimum Nutrition (ON) 100% Whey, which is primarily Whey Protein Isolates. Next tub I'm going to try to the all-natural ON 100% Whey which is free of artificial ingredients.

I've tried a bunch of other brands and have found that the ON 100% is best because it's consistently the easiest on my digestive system, it's @ a good price point, and it also mixes easily and has great flavoring.

Joe Morden 03-23-2010 09:30 AM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
I usually get my protein powder for You can select how you want it sweetened (or not sweetened at all) and they have a pretty vast array of different proteins. Additionally you dont pay for marketing hype/pkging and you never get some "proprietary blend" of god only knows.

Sheldon Danley 03-23-2010 10:55 AM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
Another vote for Optimum Nutrition products. I've been a big fan ever since before I found CrossFit. All of their products mix very easily (just stir vigorously with a spoon in a glass) and taste good too. Lately I've been on a kick with their 100% Natural Oats & Whey (WFS). I know, I know...Oats aren't paleo. However, this provides a better balance of carbs and protein post-WOD.

Dimitri Dziabenko 03-23-2010 04:33 PM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
It's tough to really tell with pure protein powders, because the effect is often overhyped, and tough to separate from the rest of your diet. If your diet sucks, no protein powder will help you, if it's very good, the powder is secondary.

I am currently trying Lg lipotropic protein, no magic, as with all the other powders.

Rob Darden 03-24-2010 05:50 AM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
This is what I use. Can't beat the price and it is great tasting.

Justin McCallon 03-24-2010 06:22 AM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
Obviously get the rest of your diet in order, and think of protein powder as nothing more than food. Factor in the protein/carbs from it to get the right macro breakdown.

Different protein powders are good for different times. Most protein powders are made up of some mix (or not) of (a) Whey, (b) Egg, and (c) Casein. Some might have Soy protein, which is kinda like eggs, but not as good.

Anyway, whey/egg/casein all digest at different rates. Whey is really fast and casein is really slow. Casein can become even slower if you drink it mixed in milk. I think fats slow digestion even more (i.e. mixing in olive oil). Egg is in the middle. Your body can only digest so much protein at one time, so if you have 100g of protein, it probably shouldn't be all whey.

Casein has been shown to blunt catabolism. Whey doesn't really do that.

So, you want a little different mix depending on the time of day...
Morning - You want to blunt catabolism (you just "fasted" 8 hours), but you also want to get your muscles a bunch of protein. So, you want mostly whey + a little casein. Some egg would be nice too so it continues digesting for a little while. Drink in water.
Pre-workout - Pretty much pure whey. Maybe some egg.
During workout - Whey
Post-workout - Same deal as morning. Your body is in a pretty catabolic state. Drink in water.
Before bed - Casein, maybe some egg and maybe just a little whey. Drink in milk.

As far as isolate vs concentrate, just save the money and go with concentrate. I can't remember the terminology for casein, but there's like caseinate vs some-kind-of-really-pure casein. Just go with the casienate (the cheap casein).

Oh, also, for some reason nobody here talks about Waxy Maize. I'm not sure why, but that ****'s awesome. It's basically super-fast digesting carbs (to oversimplify). It's perfect pre/post/during your workout. You should be taking in 2-4x as many carbs as protein post-workout. Waxy maize is the answer. It does lots of good things.

As far as which brands to choose...
So, there's (a) Concentrated/Isolated single-type proteins, (b) Protein blends, (c) Meal-replacements (protein + usually fast-digesting carbs), and (d) pure-carbs.

(a) Concentrated single-type proteins
1. Whey - I like Optimum Nutrition's 100% whey. Cheap, good enough quality. I like chocolate.
2. Casein - Same deal. Optimum Nutrition's 100% Casein (or something like that). I like vanilla.
3. Egg - Not sure, never bought any.
I'm not a fan of their forums or anything, but I strongly recommend (WFS) for this. Usually they have the best prices, they fill your order immediately, the shipping is cheap and really fast, and their customer service is incredibly good (I just made a mistake and had something shipped to my old address, and the guy there wouldn't ever open the door, so they shipped me a new $180 shipment for free).

(b) Protein Blends
AtLargeNutrition's (WFS) Nitrean - Tasty. I think it's like 80% whey and the other 20% or so is made up of casein and egg protein. This is pretty ideal for every time of day except before bed, I think.
Matrix 5.0 - Another tasty brand.

(c) Meal Replacements
I don't ever buy these. These are basically for people that want a full protein + carb meal without added fat. Most of the time the carbs are bad carbs. Some of these mixes might be good post-workout, but I don't know of a lot of brands that have the right mix (the good ones use a mix of glucose & maltodextrin, which is good, but definitely not as good as waxy maize). If you're going to get one of these, get AtLargeNutrition's Opticen.
If you want to find a true meal replacement for just any time during the day, you'd want something with low GI carbs + protein.

(d) Waxy Maize
I don't know of any good, pure, flavored brands of waxy maize. Usually it tastes a little chalky if unflavored. But, it's cheap, so suck it up. Go to and get CARBO LOAD.

So, in summary, I usually get:
Optimum 100% Whey, Optimum 100% Casein, Nitrean, and Carbo Load.

Again, consider these as supplements to whole foods. I eat 1.5-2g of protein per pound of bodyweight (regardless of whether I am bulking or cutting ... carbs change for me, not protein, and not really fats either). So you also want all that chicken/tuna/shrimp/salmon/lean-beef/eggs and all the other good protein. And you also want all those good veggies, etc.

The other supplements I take are Fish Oil, a Centrum multi-vitamin, Creatine (take either pre or post workout after your loading period), and ETS (Elite Training Support, from AtLarge, which decreases soreness and joint pain and might improve endurance a bit). I don't cycle creatine because there's no need. Fat burners are good, too, if you're cutting or maybe on maintenance and just trying to build muscle and lose fat at the same time (this is hard). I haven't gone on a cut in several years, but I think you want (a) Yohimbine, (b) stimulants, especially ephedrine and caffeine (but also other stuff), and (d) something called something similar to L-Teronine or something like that. Go read Lyle McDonald's stuff and he tells you how to do all this stuff. I can't think of any other supplements worth buying. The ones I recommended are generally cheaper than food that has a similar macro breakdown, so buying them saves money assuming you keep the same macro's. Obviously ETS and creatine don't replace food, but they'll make a noticeable difference and they're not *that* expensive. There's lots of other supplements that people buy that is way overpriced for what you're getting.

I did this all from memory so it's possible some of my terms were slightly off. Chris Mason is a lot better with supplement stuff than me, so he may have some critiques.

Chris Mason 03-24-2010 07:29 PM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
Justin, thanks for the recommendations of our stuff. If anyone has any specific questions I would be happy to answer them.

Craig Finnigan 03-24-2010 10:09 PM

Re: Protein powder recommendations
I wonder if anyone else has tried this: (WFS).

I've been using it for a few months with good results. I'm following a Paleo diet, and I know this powder definitely isn't Paleo. I think when this can is done I am going to switch to whey protein.

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