Protein supplements for bodybuilding – which type to choose?

protein supplementation

Protein is the most important element in shaping the silhouette and building muscle mass. Physical activity significantly increases the demand for this nutrient, which creates the need for supplementation. Because of that, protein supplements are one of the most popular products among athletes and are commonly used during bodybuilding training. Different types of protein supplements vary greatly, making it easier to please everyone.


How to choose protein supplements for bodybuilding training?


Make sure the protein supplement is healthy 

When choosing the perfect protein supplement, it is important to make sure the product is healthy. In order to do that, it is crucial to pay attention to its composition. Some supplements are contaminated with dyes, sweeteners and other additives to increase their taste. 

Choose the taste and form of the supplement

Protein supplements differ greatly in terms of taste and form. Most come in the form of a powder which is very easy to ingest as a cocktail, drinking solution or by adding it directly to a meal. Other protein supplements can take shape of an energy bar or even a sandwich cream. Powders and other forms of protein supplements have different tastes, the most popular being vanilla, strawberry and chocolate. 

Choose the protein source 

Different types of protein supplements contain protein from different sources. The most popular proteins are obtained from dairy products, some come from eggs and beef. There is also a vast variety of vegetable proteins available for people on a plant-based diet. Raw materials for vegan protein supplements are soybeans, peas, wheat, beans and rice. 

Pick the time of taking the protein supplement 

Some athletes prefer to take protein supplements before the training, some after, others choose to ingest them two times a day. The time of the supplementation may depend on the type of protein, which is why it is important to choose a product that will meet one’s needs. 


Types of protein supplements most effective for muscle mass gain


The most popular type of protein supplements is whey proteins obtained from dairy products: Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC), Whey Protein Isolate (WPI) and Whey Protein Hydrolysate (WPH).

  • WPC – Whey Protein Concentrate contains 85% of protein. It has a long absorption period, which means it is not suitable for post-training use and its supplementation should better be carried out during the day, between meals and before a workout. The use of WPC allows protection of the muscles during reduction and supports their expansion during muscle mass gain. Whey Protein Concentrate is recommended primarily for people who are just starting protein supplementation.
  • WPI – Whey Protein Isolate contains 95% protein. It allows quick absorption, which makes it ideal for pre-workout consumption. WPI accelerates metabolism and can be used to reduce body fat. It also improves the immune system. Whey Protein Isolate is intended primarily for people who want to build muscle mass and who have already some experience with protein supplements.
  • WPH – Whey Protein Hydrolyzate contains up to 100% protein. It accelerates the process of recovery after training, helps to develop muscle tissue and reduces body fat. WPH is best used around training – before and after a workout session. It is recommended for people who are advanced in terms of training and have experience in protein supplementation.

Aside from whey proteins, athletes can choose from other types of protein supplements, mainly: 

  • Micellar casein – protein obtained from dairy products containing a lot of essential amino acids. It is great for regeneration but has a long period of absorption, therefore is recommended to be used before night’s rest.
  • Mass gainer – a supplement that is a combination of protein and carbohydrates. It is recommended as a support in the period of extensive muscle mass building training.

While deciding on protein supplements, it is necessary to remember, that proper supplementation should always be adjusted to the body weight and lifestyle of the individual.