Levels Sugar-Free Athletic Protein Powder
Last updated date: September 7, 2022
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We looked at the top Protein Powders and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Protein Powder you should buy.
Update as September 8, 2022:
Checkout The Best Protein Powder for a detailed review of all the top protein powders.
Levels Grass Fed Protein, Undenatured is sugar-free, non-GMO, and uses whole ingredients to achieve its flavors. During our testing, we liked the ease of mixing and attainable price point.
In our analysis of 91 expert reviews, the Levels Sugar-Free Athletic Protein Powder placed 8th when we looked at the top 20 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
User Summarized Score
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An Overview On Protein Powders
Protein is a key part of any healthy eating plan. It helps you gain muscle and lose fat as well as provide essential nutrients every body needs. Unfortunately, getting enough lean protein throughout the day can be difficult. Oftentimes you’re on the run and there simply isn’t time for grilling up some chicken or fish. A busy schedule isn’t an excuse for skimping on nutrition, though. Protein powders are a convenient solution to keep you satisfied and on track with your goals.
There are whole aisles devoted to protein powders, including whey, casein, soy and pea to name a few. But not all protein powders are created equal. The nutritional quality, as well as the source of the protein and additional ingredients, varies widely between different manufacturers.
Whey has long been considered the gold standard of protein powders. It comes from cow’s milk and is the watery liquid extracted during cheesemaking. Its claim to fame is that it contains all of the amino acids (or building blocks of protein) that you need for muscle repair after workouts. Similarly, casein protein is also derived from cow’s milk. However, it takes longer to absorb and digest. It provides excellent overnight fuel for muscles.
There are also several plant-based and vegan protein sources. While many do not contain the full array of amino acids your muscles need, soy is a complete protein. Soy protein isolate tends to be a better option than concentrate because it contains higher levels of protein.
Rice, pea and hemp proteins are good options for anyone with a soy allergy. Unlike soy, these do not contain the full array of amino acids your muscles need on their own. That means manufacturers mix and match a few different plant-based proteins to form a complete protein and include all the amino acids. Additionally, plant-based proteins tend to have an earthy flavor to them.
In addition to unique protein sources, each brand offers a wide variety of flavor options, from minimally unflavored to outrageous combinations like birthday cake or peppermint mocha.
Then, there is texture and price to compare and factor into your protein powder decisions. You should also be prepared for sticker shock when you first venture into the protein powder aisle. The prices for single tubs of protein powder may seem exorbitant, but it’s helpful to look at the high number of servings each one contains. In fact, one tub can last for months and supplement or replace many meals.
With so many options on the market, picking the right protein powder for you can be difficult and overwhelming. The best way to decipher which protein powder is right for you is to look at your goals and how you want to incorporate the supplement into your diet. Certain types of protein are better for muscle gain while others excel at curbing appetite. Once you know what your goals are, then you can stroll confidently into the protein aisle.
In recent years, there has been an overall shift toward cleaner protein. Now, manufacturers are paying more attention to and promoting what’s not in their product as much as what is in the recipe. For example, some powders have just one ingredient. When it comes to supplements, less is more. The added ingredients can counteract the good work of the protein. In fact, adding sugar and processed ingredients can skew otherwise healthy foods into the junk food category quickly.
The Protein Powder Buying Guide
- Do your own research and read the ingredient labels and nutrition facts to see exactly what is and isn’t in each product.
- Whey protein is the most common protein source in protein powders, and it comes from cow’s milk. Anyone with a dairy allergy or sensitivity will want to steer clear of whey.
- Protein powder should contain all the essential amino acids muscles need to repair and grow. That makes it a “complete protein.” Manufacturers generally include this information prominently on the label.
- There are many plant-based protein options, including pea, rice, hemp and soy. These are great options for vegetarians, vegans and anyone with allergies.
- Don’t just focus on the protein source. Additives and other ingredients make a big difference in taste, nutrition quality and texture.
- Some protein powders mix evenly when stirred, but most work better in a shaker bottle or a blender.
- Protein powders containing casein, whey isolate or soy are better for weight loss and curbing appetite than other sources. They are satiating and low in calories, as long as the formula includes no added sugars.
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