Fitness

Not Just for Men: Why Women Need Protein Too

When you hear about protein shakes and supplements, what comes to mind? If you’re like most women, you probably think of professional athletes, competitive bodybuilders, and two hundred pound guys getting ripped in the weight room.

But protein isn’t just for men trying to bulk up or win their third Ironman. Active women who add a protein shake to their diet can reap tons of benefits, from easier weight maintenance to a sleeker, more toned physique.

Getting more protein can improve your overall health, and of course, it can boost your workouts and the results, even if you aren’t benching your bodyweight every day! Plus, recent studies show that up to one third of average women aren’t even meeting their minimum daily protein requirements with their current diets, and an active woman needs significantly more protein every day than an inactive one.

IdealLean is a protein supplement formulated specifically for active women looking to reach and maintain their fitness goals. The pure isolated whey protein in IdealLean is one of the best sources of protein for easy absorption, lean muscle gain, weight loss, and weight maintenance. The protein in IdealLean can help you reach your fitness goals: getting fit, getting strong, and getting lean.

Why Women Need Protein

Read on for the top five ways that protein can benefit you, your life, and your health.

1. Weight Loss

If you’re trying to lose a few extra pounds the healthy way, protein can be your best friend, and the type of whey protein found in a high-quality shake like IdealLean Protein could be the most beneficial.

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According to a 2008 study by scientists at the Minnesota Applied Research Center, adding a whey protein supplement to your diet can boost fat loss while helping you maintain lean muscle mass, resulting in a trimmer figure without any reduction of healthy muscle and the toned body that comes with it. In this study, all subjects reduced their diet by 500 calories, but only half added a whey protein supplement to their daily food intake. The participants who added this high-quality protein lost “significantly more body fat” than those who didn’t.

Many women skimp on sources of protein because they tend to be dense in calories. But the weight loss benefits of protein definitely outweigh this downside: a recent article about women’s weight loss cites a study showing that dieters who increased their protein intake lost eleven pounds without even changing other aspects of their diets!

And if you’re worried about increasing your calories, a shake like IdealLean has only 90-100 calories per serving, and it’s made with 100% whey protein isolate shown to get results in weight loss and muscle maintenance.

2. Weight Maintenance

Even if you’re satisfied with your current weight, a protein shake could help you stay that way. An article in the journal nature details how protein aids in weight maintenance and even keeps you from eating foods that aren’t part of your healthy eating plan.

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The more protein you consume, the more your body releases its own protein called peptide YY, or PYY, which regulates your appetite to help you consume the right amount of calories naturally. What could be better than an appetite regulator that also fuels your workouts and keeps you looking toned?

That’s not all. Adding protein to your diet also helps you maintain your weight by an even simpler mechanism: it makes you feel more full than carbohydrates, and even more full than fat!

A 2008 study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that “moderately elevated protein intake may represent an effective and practical weight-loss strategy” in part because of how protein “increases satiety” and even boosts metabolism.

Your body has to use a greater amount of energy to process protein than carbs, so your metabolism increases more when you consume protein than when you consume other nutrients.

A shake like IdealLean Protein might be the easiest way to add protein to your diet to take advantage of these weight maintenance benefits.

3. Lean Muscle Gain

We may not want to bulk up, but is there a woman out there who wouldn’t like to be more toned?

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We all have a spot that we’d love to firm and define: shoulders, abs, upper arms, or all of the above! Protein doesn’t only help us burn fat and prevent hunger, it also builds and maintains lean muscle mass for a more toned body. Even better, the muscle in your body burns more calories than fat, even when you aren’t exercising!

When you work out, you want to torch fat, not muscle. Adding a protein shake to your active routine can help your body do that. Proteins are the building blocks of your muscles, and your muscles are powerhouses for calorie-burning.

When you work out and replace fat with muscle, your body starts burning more calories to maintain that healthy lean muscle. A recent University of Missouri study found that increasing protein intake was effective in “helping the body retain muscle while losing fat.”

Unfortunately, the same study found that most Americans, male and female, don’t consume enough protein to reap these health benefits. Researchers recommend consuming plenty of “high-quality” complete protein regularly throughout your day to see results in lean muscle gain and maintenance.

The pure whey protein isolate in IdealLean provides high-quality food for your muscles that you can easily balance over the course of your busy day.

4. Quick Recovery

Protein can help you bounce back to the gym after a tough workout… or just bounce out of bed more easily every morning. Proteins, and the amino acids that make them up, are what your body uses to grow and repair all of its cells. This is especially true for your muscles, which get broken down a little every time you exercise.

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One study in the journal The Physician and Sports Medicine found that consuming protein “prior to, during, and/or following exercise can enhance recovery, immune function, and growth and maintenance of lean body mass.” So in addition to helping you lose weight and maintain your muscle tone, protein also helps you recover from a tough workout and be ready for the next one more quickly.

These benefits don’t only apply to exercise, though. Because protein has been found to help regulate hormones in the body, it might also help you maintain your energy levels throughout a normal day. Not only can protein get you back to the gym on time, it can also help you get outside with your kids or out of the door to work.

5. Overall Health

We’ve already learned how protein can help you recover more quickly from a workout and increase your energy for life outside the gym. An energy boost is always a good thing, but adding a protein shake can have other general health benefits for busy and active women.

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As for the effects of protein on stress, a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that protein actually improved people’s responses to stress. When protein is consumed, our bodies apparently produce more serotonin, a neurotransmitter that enhances our mood and prevents feelings of depression and anxiety. This study found that people who were considered “stress-vulnerable” benefited even more from this effect than average participants!

Increasing protein intake has so many positive effects for active women. Adding a protein shake to your diet can help you reach your fitness goals, maintain your body once you reach them, recover from your toughest workouts, and even manage stress and boost immunity to disease.

The 100% whey protein isolate in IdealLean is one of the best and most convenient ways to get all of the protein you need to see amazing benefits every day. 



Lindsey Mathews

Lindsey Mathews

Head Trainer & Nutritionist

Lindsey Mathews is the Head Trainer and Nutritionist at IdealFit. She is a NSCA-CSCS certified personal trainer, C-ISSN certified sports nutritionist, Pn. 1 certified nutrition coach, and a nationally qualified NPC bikini competitor. Before joining IdealFit, she ran the largest boot camp program in Utah County.


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