In order to make better choices, make a note of some protein-rich sources of food. Think tofu, soy milk, eggs, and lean poultry and fish. Having enough protein should ideally be complemented by healthier meal choices, too.
Choose plant-based proteins like legumes, beans, nuts and seeds more often and lean meats, fish, eggs and lower fat dairy. Choose healthy fats like olive oil, vegetable oil and the fat found in nuts and seeds and fatty fish like salmon and trout.
Protein and menopause
In addition, ensuring you get enough protein in your diet during menopause helps provide your body with the building blocks it needs for energy, your metabolism and for helping to stabilise your mood.
Postmenopausal women are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease7. But whey protein can help reduce markers of cardiovascular risk.
For men and women over 50, one of the biggest changes to happen in your body will be a loss of muscle mass. This can eventually translate into a decline in mobility and overall “functioning”. In order to prevent this, you may need to supplement your current protein intake with a protein powder.
There is no scientific evidence showing that whey protein increases estrogen levels in the body.
It can also help older adults maintain muscle and bone mass, as well as strength. There is sufficient scientific evidence to show that increasing protein intake can help older adults lose weight, control chronic diseases and avoid hospitalization.
Things like oatmeal, full-fat Greek yoghurt, homemade granola and eggs are all good options that help keep your blood sugars stable and release energy slowly to help avoid slumps.
Stacy Sims recommends that peri- and postmenopausal women should aim to stay at the higher end of the recommended range (2.2 - 2.4g per kg of bodyweight).
80 grams of protein:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, OR. 4.5 cups of cooked lentils, OR. 4-5 servings (28-32 ounces) of low- or nonfat Greek yogurt, OR. 2 pounds of firm or extra-firm tofu, OR.
So whether you're focused on building muscle or losing weight, protein shakes can help supplement your diet and achieve your wellness goals. While how much protein you need to consume varies based on your goals, the recommended daily allowance is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight or about 20 grams per meal.
Protein powders are convenient, but unnecessary for most
Larger quantities simply contribute calories and can actually reduce muscle-building potential. So, having several scoops of protein powder at once is unlikely to be helpful. Plant-based powders often have less protein, but shouldn't be discarded as an option.
A 50g serving of fresh avocado contains 1 gram of protein and a whole 5-oz. fresh avocado (3 servings) contains 3 grams of protein. Though fresh avocados do not contain a significant amount of protein, they can be a creamy and delicious addition to a variety of meal plans and menus.
Whey protein offers the most benefits for older adults, but you likely won't notice any dramatic differences as long as you eat plenty of protein overall. The overall best protein powder for men and women over 50 is whey protein. The best plant-based alternative, if you avoid dairy, is soy protein.
Low protein diets are linked to decreased growth hormone, estrogen and prolactin (linked to immunity, metabolism and breast milk production) and increased stress responses and thyroid imbalance. Grass-fed beef, organic chicken and wild-caught fish are the best quality sources of animal proteins for hormone health.
Foods that reportedly increase estrogen include flax seeds, soybean products, chocolate, fruit, nuts, chickpeas, and legumes. Before we delve into why these foods are said to increase estrogen, we need to look at two important definitions; phytoestrogens and lignans.
Consumption of whey protein can lead to depletion of good bacteria in your gut and can increase bad bacteria which may cause stomach pain, constipation and gas. Your body may even find it difficult to digest dairy products or dairy proteins naturally.