Whey is definitely a no-no for any vegan.
Whey protein is the water soluble part of dairy milk. It has low lactose content and contains all essential amino acids. While whey is believed to have numerous health benefits, the fact that it’s a dairy product derivative disqualifies it from being a vegan product.
However, vegans always have options to everything blacklisted in their food options. For whey, some options to go for include:
Just like soy or other beans or legumes, hemp seed is a great source of protein because it contains all the 21 known amino acids. This includes all the 9 essential amino acids which can’t be produced by the body on its own and must be taken from food. However, unlike soy beans, hemp has not been subjected to genetic modification. Farmers, who cultivate hemp also say that its growing does not require pesticides, herbicides or petrochemical fertilizers. This makes hemp a safe plant source of protein.
Containing 24 grams of protein per serving, brown rice protein powder has many benefits for health and fitness. It provides a great source of protein for vegetarians and vegans and others who follow certain diets. Being allergen-free, it may also make a perfect option for people with dairy, soy, and/or gluten allergies. Recent research has also shown that rice protein can help with post-workout recovery and gains in muscle when taken after exercise.
Soy is an excellent alternative to whey, however, if you are the overly active gym or sportsman needing to pump up lots of energy each day it may not the best option as studies have shown that whey is still better for those needing a lean body mass and proper appetite regulation.
In addition, soy is often attributed to allergy so it is certainly out of question for those allergic to it.
Pea protein is the best fit where soy protein leaves a gap. It is non-allergic and as well good for appetite regulation and promotion of lean body mass. Vegan athletes can, by all means, go for this option.
Pumpkin Seed Protein
This lower calorie soluble protein is considered higher in nutrition compared to yellow peas and brown rice and packs some generous amounts of minerals. It contains antioxidants, copper, magnesium, potassium, iron, and zinc.
..and many more.. Just Google for “vegan protein”.
Check out these two bodybuilders discussing the ever-present protein question:
Which source of protein do you use?