Are you looking for the healthiest protein supplement? If so, you should consider ones that have superfoods in the ingredients list. Such protein powder options are loaded with extra vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants from the nutrient-rich healthy foods. Different categories also provide various health benefits, which are ideal for functions like pre-workout, energy boosts, and weight loss.
Here are some good superfoods to look for in vegan protein powder:
- Pea Protein
This is one of the most popular plant-based protein sources added to powders. Manufacturers add pea protein from the yellow pea variety.
Soybeans and peas are often considered as superfoods because they include all nine essential amino acids (EAAs) that humans must obtain from food and supplements since the body doesn’t produce them naturally. Peas are:
- Maca Root
This root crop is less known than other options like potatoes and turnips but has been trending in recent years. Past studies show that maca might provide energy boosts and longer stamina, which could benefit athletes and weightlifters.
Maca is also known as ‘Peruvian ginseng’. The main edible part is the root and is usually dried then converted into powder form. One ounce of maca root contains 4 g protein, 20 g carbs, and about 135% recommended daily intake (RDI) of Vitamin C.
- Cacao Powder
This is a more natural source of chocolate flavour than cocoa powder. Dark chocolate products are usually classed as such when they have at least 80% raw cacao.
Cacao beans not only provide chocolate flavour but also various nutrients, including antioxidants and healthy fat. Cacao powder is usually defined as ground-up pods and beans.
This differs from cocoa powder, which removes the fat from the ground chocolate beans. The problem is the beans contain heart-friendly “monounsaturated fat.”
Cacao beans are processed using several steps, including:
What makes the cacao powder special is that it is processed much less than the ingredients found in products like chocolate bars and instant drinks.
- Cinnamon Powder
While cinnamon is a popular flavouring substance, natural and organic cinnamon powder is the real thing. Cinnamon is added to several foods like cinnamon buns, apple pies, and oatmeal. Companies also sometimes add it to protein-based powders for extra nutrients.
The natural spice has several health benefits that can help athletes, including:
- Contains Antioxidants
- Good for Brain health
When comparing powered proteins, you should look for real “Ceylon” cinnamon. The reason is the cheaper Cassia variety is high in a chemical compound that might be unhealthy in big doses.
- Vanilla Bean
While many products contain vanilla flavouring, the most natural sources are real vanilla beans. Real vanilla beans are sometimes added to protein supplements to add vanilla flavouring.
This superfood also seems to provide several health benefits based on past studies. This includes heart health, antioxidants, anti-inflammation, and mood-booster.
- Mesquite Powder
This protein is produced from mesquite trees. Mesquite flour is made from dried or ground pods and seeds of the tree native to Mexico and the Southwestern United States.
Mesquite powder provides various health benefits. It is high in protein, scores low in glycemic index (GI), and is a gluten substitute for foods like bread. The pods provide a sweet taste due to the fructose sugars.
If you want to boost the nutritional value of your protein powder, consider ones with the above-mentioned healthy foods. When companies combine the beans, roots, and stems of superfoods with high-protein ingredients, they become extra healthier.