26 December 2015

Whey Protein Expensive? Try Pea Protein

Many bodybuilders drink whey protein to increase their calorie and protein intake.

The problem is that the price of dairy products (including whey protein) is rising. It is getting more and more expensive.

Rather than pay more and more for whey protein, my suggestion is that bodybuilders (or anyone wanting cheaper protein in their diet) instead switch to pea protein.

At many websites, a comparison of pea protein against whey protein shows that pea protein is much cheaper.

At bulknutrients.com.au, whey protein concentrate is $540 for 30kg = $18 per kg whereas pea protein isolate is $319 for 20kg = $15.95 per kg. Furthermore, pea protein isolate is 82.4% protein compared to whey protein concentrate, which is only 76.5% protein. To make the comparison fairer, pea protein isolate needs to be compared to whey protein isolate, which contains 87.7% protein. However, WPI costs $810 for 30 kg = $27 per kg, almost double the price of the pea protein.

Bottom line is that WPC is 13% more expensive than PPI but contains less protein.

Bulk Nutrients is an Australian company shipping protein to Australians. Those outside Australia should look at local retailers or look for pea protein from websites that ship internationally, e.g. pea protein from iHerb.

Some people will claim that pea protein is lower quality than whey protein, but this is not the case. The study below shows that for increasing muscle mass, pea protein works just as well as whey protein.

If you can get the same quality protein for lower cost (and not support the dairy industry), then why not opt for pea protein?

RESULTS: Results showed a significant time effect for biceps brachii muscle thickness (P < 0.0001). Thickness increased from 24.9 ± 3.8 mm to 26.9 ± 4.1 mm and 27.3 ± 4.4 mm at D0, D42 and D84, respectively, with only a trend toward significant differences between groups (P = 0.09). Performing a sensitivity study on the weakest participants (with regards to strength at inclusion), thickness increases were significantly different between groups (+20.2 ± 12.3%, +15.6 ± 13.5% and +8.6 ± 7.3% for Pea, Whey and Placebo, respectively; P < 0.05). Increases in thickness were significantly greater in the Pea group as compared to Placebo whereas there was no difference between Whey and the two other conditions. Muscle strength also increased with time with no statistical difference between groups.

CONCLUSIONS: In addition to an appropriate training, the supplementation with pea protein promoted a greater increase of muscle thickness as compared to Placebo and especially for people starting or returning to a muscular strengthening. Since no difference was obtained between the two protein groups, vegetable pea proteins could be used as an alternative to Whey-based dietary products.


18 December 2015

How a Vegan Diet Motivates You to be Healthy

I've been a vegan for probably one year now. When I started, I remember going on the diet in secret. I was a covert vegan. I didn't tell anyone because I was concerned they might freak out.

I remember finding the vegan diet difficult because I lived with my family and my mother cooks my meals. Furthermore, when I am at work, I was too lazy to cook, so I always ate out at restaurants with coworkers or friends.

Rather than eat out with coworkers, for lunch I would instead purchase vegan food and eat at my desk. Now I make my own sandwich at home and bring it to work. Then I told my mother that I didn't want to eat meat, cheese, and egg. She didn't seem to like this at first, and my dad had a word with me about my behaviour, but I stuck with my position. After all, I wasn't a child but a fully grown adult. If non-vegan food was served to me, I simply didn't eat it, and I could easily blend my own green smoothie if I needed to fill myself up.

I am now mostly vegan. Some animal products probably slip in here and there. Sometimes I am vegetarian when eating out or travelling.

A few days ago, I was at a family gathering. My brother was there. Everyone was surprised at how skinny my brother was. His bones and ribs were showing. My concerned grandmother told my brother he needed to eat more. One family member joked that my brother was even smaller than me, which was surprising to him because I was a vegan.

Supposedly the stereotype of a vegan is that they are skinny and malnourished.

That night, while I was lying in bed, I thought about the incident. Before I was vegan, I often tried to be healthy. I tried to exercise a lot. I tried to eat healthy food. But often I would just fail. It was too tempting to eat hamburgers and bacon, so I would binge on the McDonald's and KFC. I think the reasoning is because I figured that you only live once, so why not enjoy your life eating what you enjoy eating?

However, as soon as turned vegan, I found that the motivation to eat healthy and exercise was rock solid.

My dad used to be a smoker. He'd smoke several packs of cigarettes per day. However, when I was a baby, I accidentally crawled and fell into a cigarette ashtray. There was ash all over my face. My father realized suddenly that if he wanted to set a good example for his children, he needed to quit smoking. How could he recommend his children not smoke when he himself smoked? So he quit completely the next day.

Sometimes when faced with fulfilling a cause greater than himself, a man will act. When it comes to addiction, many of us are happy to feed the addiction, even if it costs us our health, but if it is another being who you're hurting (e.g. your own child through passive smoking) then that is completely different.

The same applies to veganism. When I went on a vegan diet, I knew instantly that I would be judged. If I ended up looking unhealthy, if I ended up looking skinny and malnourished, people will shake their heads and blame the vegan diet regardless of whether the vegan diet was to blame or not. If someone is thinking of cutting down meat, dairy, and eggs, and they see a vegan who is skinny, pale, and malnourished, they will automatically conclude that the vegan diet is unhealthy and they will continue to eat animal products, and hundreds of thousands of extra animals will be slaughtered. Cows will be raped, pigs will be electrocuted, and chicken will be macerated.

If I don't eat healthy and go to the gym, I will become unhealthy, and as a result I will represent veganism badly, people will increase their animal intake, and therefore hundreds of thousands of animals will be slaughtered, and there will be blood on my hands.

This was what motivated me. It's easy to chow down on KFC and McDonald's when it's just your own health at stake, but when your decisions affect the lives of other innocent beings, that is a powerful motivator.

11 December 2015

Oral HPV?

When I went to the dentist last week, I told him that I had ulcers on my gums. They told me to rinse the mouth out with salt water. The ulcers went away but unfortunately they have reappeared on another part of my gums. I am a little bit concerned because maybe I have HPV. I’ve been reading about oral HPV on the internet. I’m really reluctant to go to the doctor because the last time I went (about a month ago) I told him that I thought I had chlamydia because of acne-like spots on my face, and he thought I was completely hypochondriac. He took a blood test and took swabs and urine samples. I was found to be completely clean. Maybe I should go to another doctor, but maybe I should just chill out. Supposedly there is no cure to HPV and even if I have it it is pretty minor, similar to cold sores.

Generalizations - Donald Trump Wants to Ban Muslims

What Donald Trump is doing is just blatant generalisation. Just because there are male criminals, doesn't mean all men are criminals. Just because there are Muslim terrorists, doesn't mean all Muslims are terrorists. There's even a logical fallacy webpage on generalization proving that it is faulty logic: http://www.logicalfallacies.info/presumption/hasty-generalisation/

05 December 2015

What to Do When Someone Gives You A Non-Vegan Gift

I went to the dentist today to clean my teeth. I hated it. At the end of the session, I complimented the girl on how slim she looked and she decided to give me about ten free toothpastes. Flattery gets you far!

Anyway, I didn't want to be rude, so I accepted the gift, but I then wondered if Colgate toothpastes were vegan. I already use a vegan toothpaste that contains no animal products and is not tested on animals.

If I kept the Colgate toothpaste, I would end up using them, which means I buy fewer vegan products.

What I eventually did was give away the toothpaste to a family member. This family member is not vegan in any way. They were very happy to receive the toothpaste. By receiving the toothpaste, it means that they won't need to buy toothpaste for a while, which reduces the demand for animal products.

The moral of the story is that if someone gives you a non-vegan gift, simply give it away to a non-vegan.

Note that after I have given away the toothpaste, I have discovered that most Colgate toothpastes are in fact vegan in that they don't have any animal-derived ingredients. It should be noted that Colgate still tests its products on animals. However, according to Peta's assessment of the Colgate-Palmolive Co, "This company is working toward regulatory changes to reduce the number of animals used for testing. This company DOES test on animals." It is unclear then if Colgate tests on animals because it has to, and if Colgate is lobbying for regulatory change to reduce the amount of animal testing it is required to do by legislation, that is only a good thing. Nevertheless, there are many fully vegan toothpastes out there that not only have zero animal ingredients but also don't test on animals.