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19:55  14 december  2020
19:55  14 december  2020 Source:   goodhousekeeping.com

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Your smoothie recipe calls for a scoop of protein powder. So you go online only to discover dozens of different varieties: whey, soy, casein, pea, rice, hemp, those with a blend of plant-based proteins... the list goes on and on. Complicating matters, there are those made with sugar and without, ones sourced from grass-fed dairy or non-GMO soy. It can feel like a near-impossible feat just to choose one that makes sense for you.

Finding the best protein powder doesn’t have to be akin to buying a new car. That said, it’s important to keep your health goals and dietary restrictions in mind, as well as the protein’s bioavailability (or how easily your body absorbs it).

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“One of the more recent, accepted ways to assess the protein quality and bioavailability is the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score,” says Jennifer McDaniel, M.S., R.D.N., a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “PDCAAS ranks proteins on a quality scale of zero to one.” The closer to one, the better.

With McDaniel’s help, we’ve taken the most popular protein powders and ranked them by both quality and bioavailability, as well as their other perks (and pitfalls), so you can pick one that fits your needs.

Whey protein

Choose this if: You simply want the best powder to increase your protein intake or are looking to build or maintain muscle.

Derived from cow’s milk, whey leads the herd as the best type of protein powder. It’s called a “complete” protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids—the ones your body can’t make on its own. Whey enters your bloodstream faster than any other protein and boasts the highest level of the amino acid leucine, which provides muscles with the necessary fuel to power through a workout and build mass. In fact, whey is the most effective powder at building muscle. So if that’s your goal, aim to consume it within an hour after exercise.

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PDCAA Score: 1.0

What to look for: You have a couple of choices. If maximum protein is what you’re after, choose a whey protein isolate or whey hydrolysate—these are higher protein (90%) and contain a bit less fat, carbs, and lactose. If a super clean product with slightly less protein is more your taste, opt for a concentrate (80%)—these are readily available in organic, grass-fed varieties which contain no trace hormones, pesticides, or grain feed byproducts.

Casein protein

Choose this if: You generally use protein powder as a meal replacement or before bed, or if you want to combine it with whey for optimal muscle-building effects.

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Casein, the main protein in milk, is absorbed more slowly than whey, so it’s not quite as efficient at building muscle. But it can leave you feeling fuller longer, which makes it a great addition to meal replacement shakes or your morning oatmeal, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. Casein has also been found to enhance muscle building when blended with whey in a post-workout shake, such as these delicious high-protein smoothies.

PDCAA Score: 1.0

What to look for: Opt for micellar casein, the slowest-digesting casein. Like whey, choose casein made with organic, grass-fed dairy if possible, or a powder free of growth hormones.

Egg white protein

Choose this if: You’re allergic to or don’t eat dairy (e.g., Paleo dieters), but still want a high-quality complete protein.

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Egg white protein is just what it sounds like: Dried egg whites that have been turned into a powder. This protein digests slower than whey but faster than casein. Although it’s not quite as good as whey or casein in terms of muscle protein synthesis, it’s still a good option in a post-workout or meal-replacement smoothie.

PDCAA Score: 1.0

What type: Your only option is “egg white powder,” sometimes called “egg white albumen.”

Soy protein

Choose this if: You’re vegan and want the best plant-based complete protein to help build muscle, stay full, or simply reach your daily protein quota.

Soy protein is made from ground soybeans that have been dehulled and defatted. It digests at a moderate rate, like egg white protein, and contains greater amounts of the amino acids glutamine and arginine, which may help support immune function, digestive health, and brain function. It’s a complete protein and considered the most effective plant-derived source for building or maintaining muscle.

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PDCAA Score: 1.0

What type: Soy isolate contains more protein than concentrate, but also more isoflavones—the controversial flavonoids some researchers think may have potential risks.

Pea protein

Choose this if: You avoid animal-derived products, but don’t want to eat soy, or if you have digestive issues.

Pea protein, derived from the yellow pea, is the most highly digestible of the plant proteins, making it a good alternative for anyone with a sensitive stomach who doesn’t want to do dairy or soy. But it’s not a complete protein—it’s low in two amino acids—so pair it with another plant-based protein such as hemp or rice protein to round out its amino acid profile and make it complete.

PDCAAS: 0.69

What type: If you want higher protein content, choose a “pea protein isolate” powder. The slightly lower-protein “pea protein powder” is also a good choice, and readily available in organic varieties.

Hemp protein

Choose this if: You want to ramp up your overall nutrient intake and don’t have strong protein needs.

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Hemp protein is made from nutrient-packed hemp seeds, and while it’s not the best for boosting muscle because of its lower protein content (most contain just 10 to 15 grams per scoop, depending on the brand, compared to about 25 grams in whey and 22 grams in soy) and PDCAA score, it does provide a good dose of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. Pair it with pea or rice protein to round out its amino-acid profile and make it complete.

PDCAAS: 0.46

What type: Most brands will feature “hemp protein,” which retains hemp’s healthy fiber and fats, but some newer options feature “hemp protein concentrate,” which will be higher in protein, but stripped of those other nutrients.

Collagen

Choose this if: You want a protein powder that may help potential benefits for your joints and skin health.

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Adding connective tissues from cows and fish into your smoothie might not sound appetizing, but collagen is one of the most popular protein powders out there, as it may aid in protecting your joints, building muscles, and supporting your skin health. Bonnie Taub-Dix, R.D.N., creator of BetterThanDieting.com and author of Read It Before You Eat It, says, “Some believe that collagen ingested will work more quickly than the collagen that is mixed within skin creams and perhaps that underscores the recent popularity of collagen powders, pills, and potions.”

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There are different types of collagen powders out there, including collagen peptides, beef collagen, marine collagen, and collagen whey. So depending on what you’re going for, they all have different uses. Collagen peptides is the most popular type because it mixes into both cold and hot liquids, like smoothies and coffee. On the other hand, beef collagen is used to create a gel-like substance, like homemade vitamin gummies or Jell-O. Most collagen powders have anywhere between 10 to 20 grams of protein per serving. But unlike other animal proteins on this list, collagen isn’t a complete protein.

PDCAAS: 0. Collagen has a PDCAA score of zero because it lacks tryptophan, but protein powder blends with collagen will have a PDCAA score of 0.39.

What type: Get collagen peptides if you want to mix the powder into your drinks. It will dissolve instantly, but there might be an aftertaste so experiment with samples before you decide to buy an entire tub.

Blended plant-based protein powders

Choose this if: If you’re vegan and want to get a complete protein in your smoothies. They’re also great for increasing your overall nutrient intake.

There are a variety of vegan protein powders out there that contain two or more of the following plant-based proteins:

  • Pea
  • Hemp
  • Brown rice
  • Flax seeds
  • Quinoa
  • Soy
  • Artichoke
  • Chia seeds

In general, plants have lower quality protein than those from animal sources. They’re also slower to digest than animal proteins. That said, some blends have a decent amount of protein, ranging from 10 to 22 grams.

PDCAAS: It’s difficult to rate plant protein powder blends because they vary so much in protein sources. Generally speaking, since plants don’t provide complete proteins (with the exception of soy), plant-based protein powders will have a much lower PDCAAS than whey or casein. However, because many plant-based protein powders have a blend of protein sources, they can usually make up a complete protein together.

What type: Ideally, choose powders without added sugar or artificial sweeteners. It’s also best to stick with organic varieties to avoid processed ingredients.

What to look for on protein powder labels

When you’ve settled on the best protein for your nutrition and muscle-building needs, there are still countless brands competing for your business. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you scan the labels:

  • If your protein is marketed as a specific type of protein (e.g., whey isolate), make sure that’s the first ingredient in the ingredient list.
  • Scan for artificial sweeteners. To keep the carb count low, companies sometimes use these instead of real sugar.
  • Make sure the ingredient list is short. You’re buying a protein powder for the protein, after all—not the additives.
  • Pick a neutral flavor to get the most bang for your buck. The most versatile protein powders are the unflavored and vanilla-flavored options.

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For Dreamers, 48 Fashion Fantasies From the Vogue Runway Archive .
Meet some of the characters who have come to life on the catwalk.When making collections, designers often turn to art, film, and literature as jumping-off points. Fairy tales, for example, have informed fashion shoots, some of which are collected in Vogue: Fantasy & Fashion. But Little Red Riding Hood, renegade princesses, and latter-day Joan of Arcs aren’t only to be found on the magazine’s glossy pages. Season after season, the runway is populated with Dickens heroines and royals, as well as more outré imaginings, like femme fleurs and mystical creatures.

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