Protein supplementation can be a tricky topic for parents.
There’s usually a large amount of confusion and questions when it comes to this topic, so here’s an FAQ that you can reference when considering getting your child a protein supplement.
Q: Which protein is best?
A: There are a number of protein powder products out there, two of them being “whey” and “casein”.
Whey protein comes from whey, the by-product of cheese/yogurt straining. It’s that liquid that separates from your yogurt after it’s sat in your fridge for a few days.
Casein protein is found in what’s left in dairy after whey has been strained out. Essentially, it is the only kind of protein in cheese or most yogurts.
There are pros and cons to both of these kinds of proteins, but both are generally good-to-go.
When buying one or the other, ensure that it comes with minimal additives. It should just have the protein itself, some sugar or sweeteners, and maybe some fortification in the form of vitamins & minerals.
Q: How much protein should my young athlete have?
On average, athletes and any active individual should have their bodyweight in grams of protein daily.
This can come from food sources (e.g., meat, eggs, dairy) as well as supplement sources.
If you’ve ever tried to consume that amount of protein, you know it’s pretty tough. What the protein supplements will do is add in an easy 35-40 grams of protein towards your daily goal.
However many servings it takes to help your young athlete hit his or her daily goal is the required amount. For some, this may be one serving and for others, this may be 3-4 or even more.
Q: When should my athlete consume a protein supplement?
Consume protein whenever you can.
Post-workout is an ideal timeframe, but what counts the most is that your young athlete actually consumes them.
Timing is not nearly as important as the actual consumption of protein.
Protein shakes can help your child gain muscle mass if it’s tough for them to gain weight. Have them drink them regularly and throw in some calorically dense options like peanut butter, ice cream, and olive oil.
No matter the situation, protein supplements are a good choice to aid in nutrition and proper recovery from training session to training session.
Plus, with a busy schedule it’s the perfect “on the go” snack!