Looking into becoming vegan, but don't know how to consume enough protein in order to build muscle? How about looking to improve your health? Vegan protein powders seem to be something NO ONE is talking about! With countless individuals deciding to go vegan, vegetarian, or just wanting to reduce the amount of dairy (and even chemicals) in their food (and supplements), I decided to buy/use some vegan supplements in order to have a better idea behind the comparison of whey protein and plant-based protein (I am currently trying beef isolate protein for my next protein review). The product I happened to try was the "Vega Sport" plant-based protein powder. In this article I will discuss the ingredients in the product, how I supplemented with it, my experience/impression, and the price of the product.
With someone wanting 30 grams of protein per meal, I always used a full scoop when portioning out my protein intake (which resulted in 20 servings per container). The macor-nutrient breakdown of the product is such: 3 grams of fat, 4 grams of carbohydrate, and 30 grams of protein per scoop. Very macro-nutrient friendly if you'd ask me. The product also has extra beneficial ingredients such as tart cherry (shown to reduce exercise induced inflammation/pain ), tumeric (shown to reduce inflammation), and bromelain (yes, also another anti-inflammatory ingredient). The product also displays it's amino acid profile (for those worried about "incomplete proteins").
How Did I Use It?
I personally used the product as a meal "bridge" (in between meals). I do this with every protein and just because this is plant-based, does not make this product any different. When I was not hungry for a big breakfast at 7 in the morning I would drink I scoop of the Vega Sport and eat a few bananas or apples (pre-workout meal).
I really liked the way I felt drinking the Vega Sport. I did not have the stomach discomfort I got from drinking whey protein while drinking it. One thing about the product is the second you drink it, you know it is a plant-based protein (or at least not whey). It has a different texture and even the chocolate taste does not taste like chocolate we are used to. This in itself is not a bad thing, but if you have a favorite flavored protein that was whey protein (or you drink protein shakes more for the taste and as a meal replacement) then you may not enjoy the Vega Sport as much as your whey protein. The plant-based protein mixed very well, but was much more difficult to clean out of a shaker cup than whey protein (stuck to the sides). Since I was taking a green superfood supplement, it was much easier and tasted better mixing them together than would mixing the greens with a whey protein. My entire experience enlightened me that vegan protein is just as effective as whey protein. I felt better, performed just as good (strength and endurance), and did not lose size.
There are varying prices of the Vega Sport Performance Protein powder. On amazon you can get the Vega Sport for $41.99. For only 3 dollars more you can get the Vega Sport Performance Protein powder without shipping ($44.99 at GNC). Right away it's not hard to see, yes... plant-based protein does cost more than whey protein. Whether it be the demand of healthy ingredients, the complexity of the process, or the brand itself, the Vega Sport is a more specific protein to get. It is more of something most people would consider if they are not consuming an incredible amount of protein each day, are vegan, and are looking for something with the highest amount of protein (30 grams of protein per scoop is incredibly high for vegan protein). As I said, this is not your main source of protein (beans, peanut butter, etc should be), but helps supplement more protein into your diet.
The Vega Sport Performance Protein powder is an amazing supplement for vegans and those that are wanting a more organic/healthy alternative to regular whey protein powder. I preferred the taste of whey protein, but prefer the Vega Sport in terms of how I felt when using it. Plant-based protein costs a little more than whey protein, but if you are using the product as it is intended (a supplement, not a meal replacement), then it will be well worth the money.