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Pea Protein vs. Whey Protein: Which One is for You?

Want to learn more about the differences between pea protein and whey protein? Keep reading because we have it all in this guide!

If you’ve considered adding a protein supplement to your routine, chances are you’ve come across a few varieties. Two of the most popular forms of protein supplements are derived from whey and peas, and are an easy way to increase your daily protein without the extra calories, fat, or carbs that come from increasing your food intake. But what exactly are pea protein and whey protein, and how do you know which one is right for you?

In this article, we’re going to go a little deeper to discern:

  • The differences between pea and whey protein
  • The benefits of including a protein supplement in your routine
  • Our top pea protein meal replacement options

The differences between pea and whey protein

What are pea and whey proteins, and how do they help your body?

A strawberry smoothie
Including protein supplements is a great way to give your body what it needs. Image courtesy of Allrecipes.

Adding powdered protein to a smoothie or mixing it with water is one of the easiest ways to increase your daily protein amount. One of the most popular protein sources (and one that has been used by athletes and regular folks alike for decades) is whey. This protein source is derived from animal milk through a filtration process used to make cheese. The major reason that whey is so popular as a protein supplement is that because it comes from animals, it is a complete protein and contains all nine essential amino acids that the body cannot make. We need to get these amino acids from the food we eat in order to support muscle function and recovery.

Whey also contains lactose sugars, which can cause some discomfort to those who are sensitive to dairy, or are lactose intolerant. Whey is easily added to drinks or smoothies, and you can purchase flavored and unflavored versions.

So what is pea protein?

This protein powder is derived from yellow split peas that are ground into a fine powder and have the starch and fiber removed. The major difference between the two protein powders is pea protein is plant-based, while whey comes from animals. This is great for people who are vegan/vegetarian, or who have had issues with whey causing discomfort in the past. Pea protein is also a complete protein, and contains all nine amino acids necessary for the body, just like whey.

You may also find that pea protein is less expensive than whey, but depending on why you’re taking it, you may need to ingest more of it to get the results you’re looking for. Pea protein can also easily be added to smoothies, or mixed with water, and it dissolves quickly and comes in flavored and unflavored varieties.

Which protein supplement you choose greatly depends on what your goals are. Both pea and whey offer around the same amount of dietary protein per serving, but each protein has different amino acid profiles. If you’re looking to build muscle quickly, you may gravitate to whey protein, as it has more of the amino acid leucine than pea protein. However, if you just want to include more protein in your diet as an easy way to fuel your body, pea protein should work out just fine.

The benefits of including protein (either pea or whey) supplement

Why should you include a protein supplement in your diet?

A group of young adults running together in workout clothing.
Protein is a great addition to any healthy lifestyle. Image courtesy of NASM Blog.

No matter which type of protein you decide is best for you, there are some major benefits for your body. Decide first what your goals are, and why adding a protein supplement would be right for you. Then you can decide whether pea or whey protein will help you reach them!

Building muscle

If building muscle is a goal of yours, then adding a protein powder is a fantastic idea. There is all kinds of research showing that whey protein specifically can help you build muscle when combined with resistance training. You can also use pea protein, however this supplement does not have as much of the amino acid leucine, which is a key component in increasing muscle mass. But to the average person who wants to tone up, this shouldn’t make or break your decision to use pea or whey protein. The important part is ensuring you’re getting enough protein to help build muscle and assist with muscle recovery post-work out. You should plan on getting 30-36 grams of protein (that includes the necessary amount of leucine) to increase your muscle mass.

Muscle recovery is also key, as this is when your muscles repair themselves and grow. Taking a protein supplement is a great way to not only increase muscle mass, but to limit the time it takes them to recover.

Weight loss

Did you know that taking protein is also a great way to reach your weight loss goals? That’s right, when you include protein as a supplement, it is a great way to get this essential nutrient without the extra calories, fat, or carbs from other high protein sources such as meat, dairy, and eggs. Your body also digests protein slower than carbs, which is why you feel fuller for longer periods of time when you’re incorporating more protein into your diet.

When you want to lose weight, you need to make sure you have a calorie deficit, which is one of the things people struggle with the most. Protein keeps you feeling full, which means less snacking and overconsumption at meals, and limits your overall caloric intake for the day.

According to the Food Sciences Corporation, including protein meal replacement products is a great idea for those people on weight loss medication (such as Ozempic) as it ensures they’re getting the vital nutrients the body needs to operate properly. Including extra protein throughout the day ensures the body maintains its lean muscle mass, while you’re on your weight loss journey.

Convenient way to fuel

It’s worth mentioning that protein powder is an incredibly convenient way to keep your body fueled while you’re on the go. Powders can be mixed into water, or incorporated into smoothies that are easy to take with you as you go about your day. It’s a great way to ensure you’re always getting what your body needs no matter what you have planned. Just grab your shake or smoothie for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even as a snack and add in any additional favorites such as fruit, vegetables, or even oats to get a well-balanced meal.

Our top pea protein products

Looking for easy meal replacement options that contain pea protein? Look no further!

A bag of WonderSlim Pea Protein Chips
Once you try these chips you’ll never go back to traditional ones! Image courtesy of Diet Direct.

Including protein powder in your routine is a great way to build muscle, lose weight, or ensure you’re getting essential vitamins and minerals when you’re on the go. You can also include protein meal replacement options as a way to ensure you’re staying on track and will reach your health and fitness goals.

WonderSlim Pea Protein Chips

Looking for a great snack that is full of protein and won’t set you back on your daily caloric intake? Then consider picking up the Wonderslim Pea Protein Chips. This snack is full of 10 grams of pea protein in each serving, and only has 120-130 calories. Ditch the old conventional potato chips for something lighter and healthier. With only 10 net carbs, you won’t even miss the other chips! Not to mention they come in three delicious flavors, Hickory BBQ, Ranch, and Salt & Vinegar.

Take this gluten-free, low sugar snack with you when you’re away from home for the day, or just need an afternoon protein boost. Made without the excess calories, salt, carbs, and sugar, it’s easy to forget about other chips with this snack.

WonderSlim Plant Protein Meal Replacement Shake

A box of Wonderslim Plant Protein meal shake
Get more protein with this pea protein meal replacement shake! Image courtesy of Diet Direct.

If you’re looking for a meal replacement shake that includes pea protein, look no further than the WonderSlim Plant Protein Meal Replacement Shake. This is a great addition to your daily routine, and will ensure you’re giving your body the fuel it needs to keep up with your fitness routine and reach your weight loss goals. Each serving has 15 grams of pea protein and 24 vitamins and minerals, and just 100 calories. Canadian-grown peas are used to make this sustainable protein powder, which also includes a plant extract blend of broccoli, pumpkin, sunflower seed, chlorella, and more.

These shakes come in three yummy flavors (plus a variety pack), have 1 gram of sugar or less, no artificial sweeteners, 4 net carbs, and an unbeatable taste.

Which one will you choose, pea protein or whey protein?

Regardless of what protein you choose, you’re making a great decision to take control of your health. Whether you want to build muscle or lose weight, pea and whey protein can help!