A good rule of thumb for protein consumption when working out is to eat at least 1.2-1.8 gram of protein for every 1 kg of body weight. For example, if you weigh 140 lbs or (63kg) you should eat consume at least 77g of protein if bodybuilding. Doing this can be challenging so most people rely on powders or supplements to meet their needs. It can still be difficult if you are lactose intolerant or on a gluten free diet.
Below are some alternatives to the most commonly used and popular form of protein- whey:
1. Egg white – This is a great alternative to the others if you are looking to add the protein without the calories. It has more branched chain amino acids than whey (BCAAs – the building blocks of muscle that the body cannot generate and must be consumed). Most of the protein in eggs comes from the egg white and not the yolk so this has everything you need. Buy it here.
2. Pea protein – most protein powders that are made from vegetables lack the BCAA’s needed to build muscle but pea protein has them all. Buy it here.
3. Soy protein – probably the second most popular protein alternative out there. Many articles that I’ve read have presented negative side effects to using soy protein for men, but for women they seem fine. I’d advise any men to do their homework before switching to soy in large doses.
4. Casein – This is an expensive form found in stores like GNC. It’s usually a high quality protein. The only drawback to this protein is that it takes longer to be absorbed by the body. It’s consistency is more like mother’s milk though and makes it easier to digest. Buy it here.
5. Rice Protein – another vegetable form of protein that’s fairly good and easy to digest. It’s doesn’t have as much protein per volume as other proteins, however. It’s also gluten free. Buy it here.
Working out every other day won’t build muscle unless you are eating enough protein. This is the biggest mistake I see women and gay men making. If you are trying to build muscle, most likely it’s not the time for you to be counting calories. It should also be noted that the best form of proteins are found in real meats so the greater the percentage of your daily protein that comes from fish, chicken, and legumes, the better. You should only use protein to supplement the rest when needed.