National Protein Day 2021: Learn How To Choose Your Proteins Wisely
National Protein Day 2021: Before buying your protein powders and supplements, make sure the product has the Informed Choice Certified mark on it (a green tick at the back of the product). Read here to know more.
National Protein Day: Always read the labels before buying protein
- Always opt for a plant-based protein supplement
- Do not forget to read the label before buying the product
- Check for any additional flavours or sugars
As a country, we rank the second lowest in the world in terms of the rate of meat consumption per person. This number has not significantly increased over the last 20 years. With a largely vegetarian population, where does India get its protein? India Protein Day, which is celebrated annually in our country, raises awareness about the importance of protein.
Interestingly, this year's theme is 'Powering with Plant Protein' and this is perhaps the answer to the question raised. In India, plant based proteins are gaining popularity as they tend to be lower in calories and fat than animal proteins but higher in fibre and essential nutrients.
Apart from meat based and dairy sources, our Indian food palette is replete with rich forms of plant-based proteins. There is lentils, soy, tofu, brown rice, peas, moringa to name a few and these are all great sources of plant-based protein. However, a vegetarian/vegan diet may lack in essential vitamins, which can be complemented with a good protein supplement.
Whether you are looking to build muscle, lose weight or just get your daily dose of protein, here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the right supplement/protein powder.
How to choose the right protein
1. Opt for a plan-based supplement: Whey protein powders and supplements have been very popular in India. However, with health and wellness becoming a necessity today, people are turning to vegan and vegetarian options. A plant based protein powder or supplement can be made of various combinations and ingredients, the most common being soy. However, supplements that are made with pea protein and brown rice are gaining popularity, as they are known to offer a complete amino acid profile. So choose a brand that offers this combination so that you get the maximum amount of protein per scoop.
2. Read the label: Always the read the label and fact chart at the back of the product. This will tell a consumer what ingredients have been used in the product and their nutritional value. If an ingredient looks unfamiliar, research it well before buying. Always read the dosage mentioned on the product to avoid any complications.
3. Check for ingredients: Make sure your protein powders/supplements are made from the finest quality of ingredients. Today, there is a lot of competition in the market and many brands use low quality of ingredients or may have added sugar or artificial colouring to make it look attractive and be cost effective. Additionally, they may have harmful substances that can have side effects or cause allergies. So choose a protein powder that suits you. Reading up on the company is a good indicator of what its brand value is, its position in the market and what kind of products they manufacture.
4. Informed choice certified: Before buying your protein powders and supplements, make sure the product has the Informed Choice Certified mark on it (a green tick at the back of the product). Informed Choice is a certification process that ensures a brand or label is manufacturing to internationally recognised standards. This ensures that the products are fit for consumption and do not contain harmful substances banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
So be wise and choose right!
(Varun Khanna is Biotechnologist and Co-Founder, Fast&Up)
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