Protein powder is one of the most popular nutritional supplements in the fitness world. It can be extracted from plants, like peas, soybeans, rice, or hemp, as well as from animal-based foods, like milk and eggs.
People with diabetes need to carefully watch their sugar intake, so they can’t just simply eat more of any type of food when trying to build muscle. Instead, they can rely on certain protein powders to curb hunger, assist with recovery, and balance their blood sugar levels.
Here, I’ll provide you with the best protein powders for diabetics that will not only kickstart their fitness journey but also promote their long-term health as well.
Benefits Of Protein Powder For Diabetics
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes and it develops when your cells don’t respond to insulin properly. As a result, your blood sugar levels remain high. The most common risk factors for type 2 diabetes include being overweight, remaining inactive, and having an unhealthy diet.
It appears that diets with high protein content may potentially reverse prediabetes and improve metabolic parameters, such as inflammation status, cardiovascular risk factors, insulin sensitivity, lean body mass, and oxidative stress. This particular study had a 100% success of prediabetes remission in people after six months. However, the sample sizes were small, and more similar studies are required in the future to confirm the validity of the results.
Research shows that simple diet changes, like eating a big breakfast rich in protein and fat, can provide metabolic benefits and lead to major improvements in diabetes management. Similarly, dietary whey protein intake can lead to improved inflammation status, reduction in blood pressure, and less oxidative stress.
Interestingly, some studies show that using plant-derived protein sources instead of animal-sourced protein may lead to small improvements in glycemic control.
Best Protein Powder For Diabetics
After looking at the top protein powder brands, we compared their nutrient content, the quality of used ingredients, manufacturing practices, third-party reports, certifications, labels, and online reviews. Based on that information, we picked our top five protein powders for people with diabetes.
Best Grass-Fed Whey Protein
This whey protein powder is sourced from 100% organic, grass-fed milk. The company focuses on the humane treatment of their animals and they are USDA-organic certified. Its milk is processed at low temperatures, with no use of acid or bleach, allowing for higher whey protein concentration compared to other similar brands
Raw Organic Whey is sold in 5-pound packs and each bag contains 90 servings. You can mix it with any beverage or smoothie, but we recommend using water in order to maintain a low sugar content.
Best Casein Protein Powder
Ascent Native Fuel Micellar Casein Protein Powder is available in chocolate, vanilla, and peanut butter flavors. It contains no artificial ingredients or flavor, and it’s gluten-free, making it ideal for people with gluten sensitivity.
This casein protein powder is available in 32-ounce and 64-ounce packs. Many people take it before bedtime as it is slow-digesting, making it perfect for building muscle during sleep.
Best Pea Protein Powder
This pea protein powder by Naked Nutrition is made entirely from yellow peas grown in the US and Canada. It contains no artificial colors, sweeteners, or flavors, and it’s free of dairy, soy, and gluten.
Pea protein is very versatile and you can easily add it to your meals or drinks to boost your protein intake. You can select unflavored, vanilla, or chocolate flavors, but keep in mind that the latter two contain added sugars, so your best choice is unflavored.
Best Egg White Protein Powder
This protein powder comes in various pack sizes, including 3.52-ounce, 8.81-ounce, 1.1-pound, 2.2-pound, and 50-pound packs. It is unflavored and unsweetened, so you can add it to pretty much anything, from shakes to meals.
Egg White Protein by Bulk Supplements is perfect for people who follow a keto or paleo diet. It contains no sugar and has less than 1g of carbohydrates, which is why it is on our list for best protein powders for diabetics.
Best Hemp Protein Powder
Hemp Protein Hi Fiber by Nutiva is an excellent option for people following a plant-based diet. It is rich in protein, fiber, omega-3 fats, iron, zinc, and magnesium. It also contains only 1g of sugar per serving and is USDA-organic certified and Non-GMO Project Verified. You can order 1-pound, 1.87-pound, or 3-pound packs, and there are around 15 servings per pound. This hemp protein has a slightly nutty flavor, so it’s perfect for shakes and smoothies.
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