Before we get into the topic of discussion, I first need you to do a quick activity with me! Please open up a new browser, type in “protein powder”, and hit search. Now tell me, what popped up for you? I’ll tell you what came up for me, an overwhelming amount of different protein powders. There was everything from whey protein, casein protein, plant-based protein, egg-white protein, clear protein, collagen protein, etc. – the list seemed to be endless.
I don’t know about you, but that’s the kind of Google search that would instantly make me exit out and call it a day. I don’t want that to be the case for you, so I’m going to dissect the differences between two of the most popular types of proteins: whey protein and vegan (plant-based) protein.
What is Whey Protein?
Whey Protein is a protein powder that is derived from milk during the cheesemaking process, and is arguably the most popular protein there is.
What is Vegan Protein?
Vegan protein is a protein powder that does not contain any animal products. It’s made out of plant-based ingredients to ensure that individuals following a plant-based diet (or anyone that wants to) can reap the benefits of protein powder.
This is what you came here for. Let’s get into it! It should be noted when I’m talking about the differences between the two, I’m talking about the differences between OUR proteins because we can’t speak for other brands.
- Protein Content. When it comes to our whey and vegan proteins, they have roughly the same amount of protein per scoop. Our whey proteins have 22-23g of protein per scoop, and our vegan proteins have 20-22g of protein per scoop.
- Protein Source. I touched on this earlier, but here’s a quick recap – our whey proteins come from cows (it’s a by-product of cheesemaking); whereas, our vegan proteins are derived from different plant sources, making them vegan and vegetarian friendly.
- Amino Acid Profile. Our whey and vegan proteins do NOT have the same amino acid profiles. It’s not possible for vegan and whey proteins to have the exact same amino acid profiles because each of the proteins are derived from different sources. Whey proteins are a "complete protein" as they contain all of the essential amino acids. With our vegan protein, we combined different plant-based sources to ensure all essential amino acids are present!
- Texture. What you’ll find with most plant-based proteins is that they are chalky and gritty with each sip leaving a weird film in your mouth, but with our vegan proteins that’s not the case! Our vegan proteins are smooth and blend seamlessly into whatever liquid you choose to use. Typically you don’t have to worry about the texture of whey proteins because they’re finer, so again, they dissolve easily into any liquid. When comparing vegan to whey, the main difference you’ll find is that the vegan proteins are a little thicker in consistency.
Which Should You Choose?
At the end of the day, there is no black-and-white answer to choosing between the two. Both types are valuable sources of protein and provide the body with the necessary amino acids. The choice between them really comes down to personal preference and/or dietary restrictions.
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