TOP 8 of the best vegetable protein bodybuilding 2022

Bodybuilding plant protein powder attracts more and more people who are turning away from the consumption of animal proteins to gain muscle mass. Some do it because they reject any product derived from the exploitation of animals and have opted for a vegan diet at 100 %.

But many athletes also do it because they want to reduce their animal protein intake to save the planet, protect animals, or simply improve their health.

And that's a good idea because most plant-based powders available today have a good amino acid profile. They promote a good nutritional balance for athletes, and not only in the context of a vegan diet.

You will discover how to choose this food supplement and what are the best options:

Testoprime

Choosing the right bodybuilding vegetable protein

You probably know that the great advantage of meat or dairy products is that they contain a large amount of complete protein. And this nutrient is essential for the maintenance of your life, because they participate in the cellular construction of muscles, the proper functioning of all your cells and provide energy.

Few people know, however, that carbohydrates are not essential for life, since our body knows how to manufacture them. This does not mean that they are useless since they are an easy to use source of energy, but they are not vital.

Check your protein sources

Of course, avoiding animal products in your diet doesn't have to mean losing muscle. But you must understand that following a vegetarian or vegan diet requires a particular approach in terms of protein intake.

Indeed, natural sources of vegan protein are often incomplete for the human body. Their biological value is therefore insufficient when they do not contain all the essential amino acids that muscles need to develop. Their intake is unable to support protein synthesis and muscle mass gain.

On the other hand, if you regularly eat a wide variety of protein plants, this is no longer a problem. For example, combining brown rice with white or kidney beans allows you to consume complete proteins with all 8 essential amino acids.

You must therefore learn to find foods rich in protein and make the right combinations in your meals. This is what will allow you to do without meat or dairy products.

NOTE : In humans, there are 8 amino acids that are considered essential. These are tryptophan, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, valine, leucine and isoleucine. There are also 5 other amino acids which are essential for the child, 2 of which are vital: arginine and histidine.

More choices today

Shaker of vegetable protein powder

Fortunately, a wide variety of vegan supplements are available today. They are made from natural or flavored plants and can be mixed with water or a vegetable drink (soy, flax, almond milk, etc.), to make smoothies for example. For my part, I consume it in each of my coffees. It is an excellent source of amino acids for vegans, vegetarians, but also for those who just want to vary their protein sources.

Indeed, much progress has been made in this direction. Foods such as rice, chickpeas and sunflower do not have the same protein intake as fish or meat.

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However, food processors have been able to eliminate the fats, carbohydrates and isolate the proteins contained in these foods to produce a richer vegetable protein powder. If you are a vegan and you like bodybuilding, this is exactly what you need.

Regarding the costs of powders of plant origin, a comparison of prices according to their weight must be made. Grain and legume protein powders are typically about half the price of seed-based powders.

Here is a list of the 8 best plant-based powders on the market:

1. Vegetable protein from peas

The powder of pea-based vegetable protein is not sweet green peas, but yellow split peas because it is a higher protein variety. A quarter cup of unflavored pea powder contains about 21 grams of protein and 100 calories. However, like other legumes, its content of methionine, an essential amino acid, is low.

However, pea protein contains other essential amino acids called BCAAs, such as leucine, isoleucine and valine. BCAAs are well known to athletes because they are important for nutrition and muscle development. This barbaric term is translated as branched-chain amino acids in French. I know, it's not really dreaming...

Studies were carried out for 12 weeks on 161 young people who consumed 25 grams of this supplement 2 times a day right after a weight training session. Regarding the results, the weakest participants had a increase of 20 % in their muscular capacity.

In addition, their performance was similar to those using the animal protein. Other studies have also shown that pea powders promote feelings of fullness and lower blood pressure. These are significant advantages when practicing veganism while wishing to gain muscle volume in the best conditions.

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2. Hemp protein

Hemp protein powder comes from the seeds of the cannabis plant. But, don't worry, you're not going to get high by consuming it 😉

The variety chosen in this case is weak in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). This is the element that gives this plant its euphoric power. So you will have nothing to fear from that side.

A quarter cup (28 gram) serving of unflavored hemp protein powder contains approximately 12 grams of protein and 108 calories. It also contains fibre, iron, zinc, magnesium and alpha linolenic acid (ALA).

Hemp is naturally low in lysine which is an essential amino acid. But commercial protein powders are designed to fill this gap.

Ongoing research suggests that hemp protein is a valuable source of hypotensive compounds. However, this has yet to be tested conclusively.

Sevenhills Wholefoods Organic Raw Hemp Protein Powder 2kg
  • Rich in protein, ideal for those looking for a source...
  • Versatile to use; add to smoothies, cereals,...
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3. Pumpkin seed

Besides that they can make a beautiful carriage if you let them grow 😉 (but not after midnight, of course), pumpkin seeds are quite rich in protein and good lipids.

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During its transformation into powder, the fats are eliminated to keep the amino acids. A 28 gram serving of powder provides approximately 103 calories and 18 grams of protein. The fact that it does not contain the essential amino acids that spnt threonine and lysine still makes it incomplete.

Very few studies have been done on the benefits of this type of protein, but it is sure to contain anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

However, we can cite a study on rats with liver disease who were made to eat pumpkin seed protein. The latter presented a decrease of 22 % of their bad cholesterol (LDL) and an increase of 48 % of antioxidants in the blood.

Indigo Herbs Organic Pumpkin Seed Protein Powder 1kg
  • Minimum of 65 grams of protein per 100g. Rich in acids...
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4. Brown Rice Bodybuilding Plant Protein

Brown rice powder is characterized by the fact that it is easily available and inexpensive. Additionally, 28 grams of this unflavored supplement contains approximately 107 calories and 22 grams of protein.

The content of amino acid such as lysine is low, but it contains a lot of BCAAs beneficial for muscle building.

An 8-week study was conducted on young men who had to consume 48 grams of rice protein powder immediately after their workout. They thus presented a net increase of 12 % in the thickness of the biceps. These results are identical to those who consumed Whey.

The only problem with brown rice is the presence of potential arsenic contamination. This is why it is recommended to use vegetable proteins in powder which have been the subject of arsenic tests. It's sure, it's scary said like that, but you have to know the truth to make your choice in the best conditions.

Biotiva Organic Rice Protein 80% Protein 1kg - Source of...
  • ORGANIC RICE PROTEIN contains rice protein pure issues...
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5. Soy Protein

Powder from soybeans owes its particularity to the fact that it is complete. This is quite rare for plant-based proteins. It is also rich in BCAAs.

A 28 gram serving of soy isolate powder contains approximately 95 calories and 22 grams of protein. Additionally, it contains beneficial plant compounds, some of which may lower your cholesterol.

The downside of soy is that it causes allergies in some people and some effects related to estrogen hormones. On the other hand, recent studies have shown that vegan soy protein powders contain anticancer elements, including against breast cancer.

You can therefore consume it, but do not abuse it as a precaution.

Soy Protein 90 (Isolate) Powder | 100% Of Plant Origin |...
  • A 100% vegetable protein shake, of sustainable origin and...
  • High in Protein: Each shake contains over 25g of...
  • Very low in calories: as low as 109 calories per serving!

6. Sunflower seed

Powders from sunflower seeds are relatively new to the market. A 28 gram serving contains approximately 91 calories, 13 grams of protein and BCAAs.

Like most other seeds, sunflower seeds contain very little lysine. However, they are very rich in other essential amino acids.

As you can see, there are still few on the market and this type of powder remains quite expensive.

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7. Bodybuilding plant protein from chia seeds

Chia seeds are native to South America. They are increasingly used, especially to prepare smoothies and other protein-rich treats. However, they are also used to be transformed into bodybuilding supplements.

A serving of 28 grams of chia powder contains about 50 calories and 10 grams of protein. This, like other protein powders from seeds, contains very little lysine.

Its transformation into powder allows it to be very digestible (digestibility estimated at 80 % according to certain studies). In particular, this allows the body to absorb more amino acids.

Besides protein, chia powder also contains 8 grams of fiber per serving, as well as high amounts of various vitamins and minerals, including magnesium, selenium, manganese, biotin (vitamin B8) and chromium, a essential micronutrient for metabolizing sugar and fats.

You will find with pleasure that the price of this powder is very affordable.

Sevenhills Wholefoods Organic Raw Chia Seeds (1kg)
  • Organic variety, rich in protein and fiber, as well as...
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8. Vegetable protein powder mix

This last option is probably the best today to find the vegetable proteins in powder the most complete in terms of amino acids.

Different sources are mixed or combined to form complete proteins. For example, that of peas can provide lysine which is almost non-existent in that from rice. While the latter can provide methionine which is absent from pea protein. Some brands like Nutri&Co also go further by integrating into their vegan protein mix fibers (guar and acacia, to improve the texture) and shiitake (source of vitamin B12).

Other trends seen in blended plant-based powders include the addition of enzymes to aid digestion, as well as the use of sprouted or fermented plant-based proteins.

Interestingly, sprouting and fermentation increase the amounts of vitamins and minerals. Its composition also promotes the absorption of amino acids, minerals and other nutrients in your body.

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Conclusion on the choice of a vegetable protein powder

Whether you are vegan, vegetarian or simply a fan of a varied diet, plant-based powders can provide your body with the essential amino acids which it needs to support protein synthesis necessary for muscle repair and growth.

Moreover, if you consume animal products, it is often healthier to mix cottage cheese with vegetable protein sources rather than whey from milk (lactoserum).

In general, cereals, legumes and seeds are the main sources of vegetable protein. They are obtained by the process of isolation of protein components by eliminating carbohydrates and lipids.

If you are allergic to it, however, be careful to choose gluten-free powders.

Don't settle for just one nutrient

It's true, the consumption of vegetable or whey proteins plays an essential role in mass gain. But you should not forget the importance of essential fatty acids as part of your diet. Your body really needs it.

You can therefore take the opportunity to add nuts and seeds directly to your salads or dishes. For my part, I really like cashews, pistachios, pumpkin seeds and flax seeds.

The legumes, plants and seeds most commonly used to make protein powder are peas, hemp, brown rice and soy. However, seed-based powders including pumpkin, sunflower and chia are increasingly available.

We can still notice that among the powders available on the market, that of soy is the only one to provide a complete vegetable protein.

However, you may find that combining several vegan protein sources provides all the essential amino acids your body and muscles need to grow and stay healthy.

So do not hesitate to try this type of sports supplement, especially if you are vegan or vegetarian, in order to avoid any significant deficiencies in your diet.

And above all, keep exercising regularly!

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Last updated on 2022-03-03 / Affiliate links / Some images are sourced from the Amazon Product Advertising API

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