Can you Build Muscle Taking Plant Protein?
Content you'll find:
What is plant protein?
Is plant protein powder better than whey?
Is plant protein powder good enough to build muscle?
How much plant protein powder do I need to take?
Why choose Kinetica Plant Protein Powder?
In recent years, plant based diets including vegan and vegetarian diets have received a lot of attention, with questions arising around protein and whether or not plant sources are sufficient to support our health, dietary requirements and body composition goals.
When it comes to nutrition, there is a hierarchy of needs in order to support our health and performance. Protein is a foundational part of this hierarchy as it is an essential component of any diet, particularly when muscle building is the goal. It is involved in almost every biological process in the body, and the primary macronutrient that supports growth and repair.
Building muscle (aka. hypertrophy) is the development of mass, density, shape and function of muscle cells, put simply - muscles get bigger and stronger. For this to happen, the correct exercise stimulus (consistent, progressive resistance training) and nutrition strategy is required. One of the most important components of a nutrition strategy for building muscle is protein intake. The recommended intake of protein for muscle gain is 1.7-2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
What is Plant Protein?
Plant protein is a type of protein that is derived from plant sources such as:
- Nuts and Seeds.
Plant based protein sources such as beans, lentils, tofu, quinoa, nuts, and seeds provide us with additional essential nutrients like carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals. The most common sources of plant protein powders are derived from:
Kinetica plant protein combines micronised pea protein and rice protein for better absorption and utilisation by the body (more on this below).
Is Plant Protein Powder Better Than Whey?
Let’s break this down! Not all proteins are created equally, however, different sources of protein contain different amounts and types of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, there are 20 of them in total, 9 of which are considered to be essential amino acids, meaning they cannot be produced by the body and must be consumed through the diet. Although animal-based proteins such as whey protein, eggs, meat, fish, tend to provide a good source of all of the essential amino acids, plant based proteins can easily be combined to create a complete amino acid profile to support muscle protein synthesis (the process involved in muscle maintenance and growth).
Leucine is the amino acid that we are most concerned with when it comes to building muscle. This is because it is required to stimulate MPS, however good quality plant proteins such as Kinetica’s Plant Protein combine sources of plant proteins to ensure that the leucine content is more than sufficient to meet the leucine threshold (2g) in order to support MPS in the body.
Is Plant Protein Powder Good Enough to Build Muscle?
Absolutely! The total and type of protein is key in supporting muscle gain alongside adequate training stimulus however another factor to consider is the timing of protein intake. This is where Kinetica Plant protein powder can be the perfect addition to your muscle building nutrition strategy. Research suggests that consuming protein in the post exercise period (30-60 minutes) may help to optimize gains as there is the largest potential for MPS to occur during this phase of recovery.
How much Plant Protein Powder do I Need to Take?
Ingesting 20-25g of protein (milk or plant based) with at least 2g leucine, post resistance training supports the creation of an anabolic environment in the body. An anabolic environment is required for building new muscle tissue in the body. Good quality sources of protein such as protein powder (whey or plant based) along with a source of simple carbohydrates like fruit or juice can help to enhance the physiological response to resistance training and support muscle growth and repair. A simple smoothie with a scoop of plant protein powder, 200ml almond milk, handful of ice and frozen berries would make for an ideal plant based post workout recovery option to support your muscle building goal!
Why choose Kinetica Plant Protein Powder?
Kinetica plant protein powder ticks all the boxes when it comes to protein for muscle growth. It contains 23g of protein and over 2g of Leucine per 30g serving. Not only will it support your nutritional requirements, but it comes in my two favourite flavours - vanilla and chocolate. I find it is a great addition to overnight oats to boost my protein intake at breakfast. Mix in 1 scoop vanilla plant protein powder, 40g oats, 100g yoghurt (soy yoghurt works well for a plant based option), 1 tsp honey, 1 tbsp peanut butter and top with some fresh blueberries and raspberries. This breakfast will give you over 35g of protein and keep you feeling satisfied well into the morning!
Jäger, R., Kerksick, C. M., Campbell, B. I., Cribb, P. J., Wells, S. D., Skwiat, T. M., Purpura, M., Ziegenfuss, T. N., Ferrando, A. A., Arent, S. M., Smith-Ryan, A. E., Stout, J. R., Arciero, P. J., Ormsbee, M. J., Taylor, L. W., Wilborn, C. D., Kalman, D. S., Kreider, R. B., Willoughby, D. S., Hoffman, J. R., … Antonio, J. (2017). International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: protein and exercise. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 14, 20. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12970-017-0177-8
Norton, L. E., & Layman, D. K. (2006). Leucine regulates translation initiation of protein synthesis in skeletal muscle after exercise. The Journal of nutrition, 136(2), 533S–537S. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/136.2.533S
Schoenfeld, B. J., Aragon, A. A., & Krieger, J. W. (2013). The effect of protein timing on muscle strength and hypertrophy: a meta-analysis. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 10(1), 53. https://doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-10-53
Witard, O. C., Garthe, I., & Phillips, S. M. (2019). Dietary Protein for Training Adaptation and Body Composition Manipulation in Track and Field Athletes. International journal of sport nutrition and exercise metabolism, 29(2), 165–174. https://doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.2018-0267
Witard OC, Wardle SL, Macnaughton LS, Hodgson AB, Tipton KD. Protein Considerations for Optimising Skeletal Muscle Mass in Healthy Young and Older Adults. Nutrients. 2016 Mar 23;8(4):181. doi: 10.3390/nu8040181. PMID: 27023595; PMCID: PMC4848650.