How to replace protein?
For a number of reasons (from allergies to lactose to budgetary constraints), many trainees cannot afford regular sports nutrition. In the forums and in the comments you can often meet the question of whether it is possible at home to replace whey protein with plain milk powder or with baby food.
Some beginner athletes are looking in pharmacies for an alternative to BCAA amino acids and creatine, sincerely believing that compared to sports nutrition, “pharmacy” drugs will be better and more effective. Not to mention the fact that many beginners are trying to make homemade protein shakes from raw eggs and oatmeal.
The Importance of Protein for Muscle Growth
FitSeven already wrote that after sports training, the body needs carbohydrates rather than just pure proteins to restore and grow muscle. To gain muscle mass after strength training, a cocktail of two bananas and a glass of milk will be more useful, rather than a portion of an expensive protein-isolate with zero sugar content.
In addition, protein intake is important not so much after training as 2-3 hours before it starts - this will allow the athlete to have a high level of amino acids in the blood in the absence of heaviness in the stomach. In fact, before training, you can replace sports protein with even boiled chicken eggs, because in these same 2-3 hours they will have time to digest.
Homemade Protein Shake
The main advantage of a sports protein shake is not that it is liquid, but that it contains protein that is as accessible as possible for fast absorption. Once in the stomach, the smallest particles of whey protein are literally absorbed within a few minutes and sent as amino acids to the blood (and, ultimately, to the muscles).
To make such a mixture at home with the help of raw eggs, milk, cottage cheese, bananas and other ordinary products is simply impossible. Even if you mix it all thoroughly in a blender, the nutrient composition of such a cocktail and its absorption rate will be very far from even the lowest-quality protein powder.
Can protein be replaced with milk powder?
On the one hand, sports whey protein - this is milk powder, the most purified from fat, carbohydrates (including lactose , called "milk sugar") and other undesirable impurities. On the other hand, the protein content in milk powder is much lower, while the total calorie content and fat content is much higher.
It must be remembered that replacing powdered protein with plain milk powder is strongly discouraged. In addition to excessive calorie content, powdered milk contains so large doses of lactose that regular consumption of it can easily cause stomach problems even in healthy people with tolerance to dairy products.
Nutrient mixtures for children are fundamentally different from ordinary milk powder - they are thoroughly cleaned of lactose and impurities, and also contain vitamins and minerals necessary for the growth of the child. However, despite the high quality, in terms of grams of protein, their cost is several times higher than even the most expensive “milk” protein.
If your main problem with whey protein powder is lactose intolerance, instead of buying baby food, look for a sports protein for vegetarians. Since it is made not from milk, but from soy, peas and other plant sources, this protein does not contain lactose and other allergens.
How to replace creatine?
Creatine is a key sports supplement that increases the energy capacity of muscles (which helps to train more intensively) and improves the visual volume of muscles through the accumulation of fluid. In fact, it is completely impossible to replace creatine monohydrate with another type of sports nutrition or a pharmacy drug.
However, creatine is a typical component of muscle tissue and is found in any animal meat. If you eat 100-200 g of meat per day, you definitely cover the daily requirement for creatine . Separately, it is noted that creatine accumulates in the tissues of the athlete's body gradually, which means the need for its intake in cycles is nothing more than a myth.
Is a protein isolate really needed?
The fact that proteins are necessary for muscle growth is a reliable fact. However, the main role in the process of muscle recruitment is not played by sports protein, but by the increased calorie intake created by ordinary daily nutrition. Studies suggest that the protein itself is enough in the amount of 1.5-2 g per kg of dry body weight.
In simple words, even if you completely refuse to take protein powder, creatine and other sports supplements, but focus on a common understanding of your diet, you will achieve the result faster. This is what allows vegetarians to successfully gain muscle mass even with a complete rejection of meat and dairy products.
An attempt to make a protein shake from raw eggs and other homemade products, just like an attempt to replace whey protein with milk powder, indicates a complete lack of understanding of the nutritional rules for muscle growth. In fact, you can build muscle without the help of sports nutrition, only carefully monitoring your diet.