For every senior, even the simplest of tasks can be a serious problem to deal with. With age, it is normal to experience strength and muscle loss, but when that starts to affect the body’s ability to stand and exercise, it’s hard to do anything at home.
The first step to solving this problem is to regain strength and help the muscles recover; a whey protein powder can help do just that. Whey is the most effective source of protein for seniors who have trouble regaining their energy after a long stay at the hospital and are trying to rebuild their muscle loss, studies show.
How to choose whey protein powder?
Look at why you want to use whey protein. The best-known reason to use whey is for increasing muscle mass, something that many seniors need. It isn’t only popular amongst seniors, however. Many bodybuilders and athletes use it as a gentle and legal way to increase muscle mass when combined with a resistance exercise routine.
Whey protein increases muscle mass by:
- Providings protein and amino acids, which help build muscle.
- Increasing anabolic hormones such as insulin to stimulate muscle growth.
- Absorbing quickly in comparison to other forms of protein.
- Being high in leucine, an amino acid, which stimulates muscle growth at a molecular level.
Remember that you will only benefit from whey protein if your daily diet already lacks protein. Also, the advantages of whey protein vary between individuals. So, if it doesn’t seem to help increase your muscle. Move on and find something else.
Types of whey protein:
If you process liquid whey differently, you end up with three different types.
This is at least 90%protein. It contains less lactose and fat than whey concentrate, as well as missing out on many nutrients.
Hydrolysate (or hydrolyzed whey) is absorbed faster into your system as it has already been partially digested by fermentation.
This is about 70% to 80% protein. It also contains some fat and lactose, and many essential nutrients. Out of the three, it’s also the most palatable to eat on its own. This is usually the cheapest form of whey and retains many of the beneficial nutrients.
If however, you have problems tolerating lactose or are reducing carbohydrates and fats while emphasizing protein, it might be better to use isolate or hydrolysate.
Where to buy whey protein powder?
You can buy whey protein powder from good health food stores, gyms and online retailers. Always choose a reputable brand if you want protein that complies with food safety regulations.
5 Best Whey Protein Powders Ideal for Seniors
Not every protein source is equally nutritious, especially for the elderly. The reason why whey is better than most is due to all the essential amino acids it contains, some of which are cysteine and leucine. The body easily absorbs these nutrients and uses them to gain muscle, reduce excess body fat, and gain the much-needed strength.
Since there are plenty of whey protein products online, we have decided to select the best ones you can get. These are some whey protein powders that can definitely come in handy for seniors.
BSN SYNTHA-6 Whey Protein Powder
Most whey protein powders don’t have the best flavor, but the BSN SYNTHA protein powder is different. It offers 22g of protein in a serving and has a delicious vanilla flavor many would love. It’s rich with amino acids, fiber, and just the right amount of fat for boosting muscle gain.
All the protein it contains can be helpful for speeding the muscle recovery process, particularly after surgery. It helps broken muscles repair and builds new ones with exercise. For any senior who would like to add more proteins to their diet, this one could be the ideal pick.
- Excellent quality protein sources
- 22g of protein in a serving
- Delicious flavor
- Easy to digest
- Boosts muscle repair
- Does contain calories
- Has plenty of fat
The Optimum Nutrition is an excellent source of top-quality protein that can help make the muscles stronger and improve muscle growth. The 100% Whey Blend formula is rich with amino acids that improve muscle protein synthesis and boost the building blocks.
With adequate consumption, this product can kick-start the muscle regeneration process after inactivity or surgery. This is especially useful for seniors since they are often inactive and find it difficult to start exercising after being inactive for so long.
- Easy to mix
- An ideal source of proteins
- Filled with amino acids
- Kick-starts the muscle regeneration process
- 100% Whey Blend formula
- Great value
- Good taste
- No artificial growth hormones
- It contains soy (can cause an allergic reaction for sensitive seniors)
Isopure Low Carb
The Isopure Low Carb protein powder is a Keto-friendly option for those monitoring their calorie intakes. There are both low-carb and zero-carb options, which are a perfect fit for any senior who is looking out for their health.
Since it doesn’t contain as many calories as other similar products do, it can be efficient for managing the weight and building muscle strength at the same time. It contains plenty of minerals and vitamins, including glutamine, to boost muscle recovery.
- Supports aging muscles
- Helps manage the weight
- Contains a sufficient amount of protein
- Ideal for muscle recovery and growth
- Low on carbs
- Not as tasty as other similar products
- Has a very strong aftertaste
Quest Nutrition is designed to provide the body with enough nutrients to help it get through the day. This is particularly useful for seniors who are struggling to keep up with all the daily routines and activities. It is mixed with a chocolate milkshake flavor and other natural flavors but doesn’t contain as much sugar as other similar products do, which makes it easy on the stomach.
The best thing about it is that it’s rich with calcium and can supply seniors with 35% of their daily necessary calcium intake, including 6% of magnesium, and 4% iron. So, not only is it good for the muscles, but it’s also great for the bones as well. It’s low on carb and fat and is ideal for baking.
- Sufficient source of nutrients
- Rich in calcium
- Contains very little artificial flavors
- Low in fat and calories
- It doesn’t have a very good taste.
Vega Sport Premium Protein
The Vega Sport protein powder is a 100% vegan product with an interesting flavor. The flavors are not extremely overpowering but are a little on the sweet side. It has a silky smooth texture and a very good taste compared to other products with similar ingredients.
It contains nutritious ingredients, one of which is turmeric extract. The turmeric is known for its regenerative muscle properties, helping with muscle damage, and regulating muscle loss. It has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which can definitely come in handy for seniors. Most importantly, it contains no cholesterol and is very easy to digest.
- 100% vegan
- Excellent taste
- Muscle regenerative properties
- Rich with nutrients
- Easy on the stomach
- Contains no cholesterol
- It could be too sweet for some.
Frequently asked questions:
Where does whey protein come from?
When milk is separated in cheese production, you get the solid ‘curds’ and the liquid ‘whey’. Although whey protein comes from a natural foodstuff like milk, you must still follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using it. In moderate doses, there doesn’t seem to be any harmful side effects. However, if you take more than recommended, there is a possibility that you’ll experience nausea and headaches.
The benefits of taking whey protein outweigh the harmful effects. It can aid weight loss, provides a weapon in the fight against cancer, lowers cholesterol, improves the asthma immune response in children and reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Although whey protein powder has just about everything you need to build muscle mass: its easy availability, increased fat burning, decreasing appetite, boosting immunity, and its affordability. Many people would rather not use it for many reasons. If you’re a vegan you won’t want to use any animal products. You might have an intolerance to lactose or some other milk product. Lactose can also cause flatulence, diarrhea and bloating. Most manufacturers also try to make their products more palatable by using artificial flavorings. So what are the alternatives?
Plant-based protein, such as hemp, pea, soy, and brown rice are all good sources. A scientific study in 2013 found that brown rice protein was as good as whey protein when building muscle, increasing strength, etc. Not only that bu plant-based proteins don’t have the same side effects as animal products. Unfortunately, they are usually more expensive. So the choice is yours.
Can diabetics use whey protein powder?
Certainly. A few of whey protein’s properties seem to be good for diabetics.
- It’s a good source of amino acids that benefit diabetics.
- It increases the production of insulin and decreases blood sugar (28% lower).
- It decreases triglyceride levels after meals.
Can you still use protein powder after it expires?
Yes. Because protein powder is a dry solid, there is little chance of bacterial growth. Whey and casein powders come with a ‘Best Before’ date rather than a Use By’ date. If however the original packaging has been opened, it’s recommended that you consume it within six to eight months after the ‘Best Before’ date.
Weak muscles and muscle loss is a common problem among seniors. But, with a proper product, it’s possible to get strong muscles and have plenty of energy to get through the day. Each of these products has something unique to offer and can be useful for anyone of age, particularly for those who want to speed up muscle growth.