How to pick a protein powder for PCOS + Our favorite brands!

For women with PCOS, adding protein to your diet can be a helpful strategy in losing weight and managing symptoms like cravings, insulin resistance, and weight gain.

In this episode, we dive into the world of protein powders, a common dietary tool used to add protein to your daily intake.

You’ll learn:

– What sweeteners to look out for in protein powders

– Harmful ingredients to avoid

– Our favorite brands of protein powders

Join us in The Cysterhood, a community of women learning how to manage PCOS & lose weight, Gluten and Dairy Free!

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While Tallene is a Registered Dietitian and Sirak a Personal Trainer, this podcast provides general information about PCOS. It is not meant to serve as fitness, nutrition or medical advice related to your individual needs. If you have questions, please talk to a medical professional. For our full privacy policy, please click on the following link: (bit.ly/PCOSPrivacyPolicy)

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Full Episode transcript:

Artificial sweeteners are like multiple hundred times sweeter than actual sugar. And so they trick your body into thinking you are eating something sweet. And then you may have an insulin response where your insulin goes up because your body thinks you’re having sugar. Yeah. Like your body doesn’t know whether you had real sugar or fake sugar. Your taste buds are tasting sugar, sweetness.

So as a result, your blood’s like, Oh, we’re having sugar. Let’s release to our insulin hormone. Yes, Dr. Said, Now go and them them naturally that now. So I became a dietician. They’ve felt a step my if you wanna of them and take control of, But on mute. Oh, TOS talking to the wrong side.

Oh, the Mic. She’s not pulling the thing, right? Oh. Oh. All right sisters. What’s Up sisters? Another episode of a sister and her Mister. I never know how to start podcasts, right? I really don’t know how to the intros like, Hey, what’s up everybody? Welcome to another episode of So-and-sos Mr. Well Sisters.

It is 10:44 AM on a Thursday. And so far today we went to the gym, we had a high protein smoothie and we answered some emails. I didn’t have anything. Again, Cxs been starving himself. Why’d you tell them we do this on Thursdays at 10:44 AM Now they know the secrets behind the podcast that we do this on Thursdays at 10:30 AM give or take,

We’re also sitting in my bedroom at my parents’ house because we have nothing to our name, no house, no car, nothing. Ever since we’ve come back from our Europe trip, That’s her life. We are adults. We’re nomads. Anyway, someone was like, Oh, like are you gonna have kids soon? I was like, We don’t have a house.

We don’t have a car. Can we just, can we choose a car? And Can we just chill out for a second? Can We just chill out? We just got back. I just unpacked like please. We’re still waiting for the clothes that start it off. Are you ready? Yes. All right, scissors. Today we’re gonna talk about how to pick up the right protein powder for P C O S,

especially if you’re working out or you just wanna boost your breakfast, your breakfast protein content. Before we get started though, let’s do our little q and a segment, little q and a section. So I’m gonna pick some random questions from fellow sisters and we’re gonna pick today questions from Instagram. And this one is a question from Fisk Pain high toing. I check my blood sugar and it’s great,

but can this be good even if you have insulin problems or am I wrong? How do I check if I have insulin resistance? So insulin resistance is like a range. You can be slightly insulin resistant, you can be very insulin resistant. You would need an insulin glucose tolerance test to really know your level of insulin resistance and what’s going on. Checking your blood sugar isn’t gonna reflect your insulin resistance as much because it will show your blood sugar,

like if it’s high, now it’s showing the later stages of insulin resistance. So if you really wanna like nip it in the butt, you wanna check your insulin glucose tolerance test. And I personally didn’t do an insulin glucose tolerance test because it was just clear from my signs and symptoms that something was off. I had cravings for sugar. I was always hungry.

Like these are all signs of insulin resistance. My blood sugar would drop in between like lunch and dinner and I’d feel like I’m gonna pass out. Like I just couldn’t keep it together without having snacks always on hand. And so these are all signs that you may be insulin resistant. So yeah, if you want do an insulin glucose tolerance test or if you just have these signs and symptoms,

then you know what’s happening here. And there are you steps you can take to help with insulin resistance, like taking ovasitol, taking supplements, and of course changing your diet, making sure that you’re balancing your plate, understanding your carb tolerance and so on. Everything we help with in the sisterhood. Yes. Love that response. Thank you. I know I can go on for hours about insulin resistance.

I know, I like when you talk about the key. Yes. And unlocking The cell. Yes. Yes. The insulin being the key and the cell being the door. And when the key can’t unlock the door, it’s insulin resistance. You know, insulin is supposed to be handing over sugar from your bloodstream to your cells, but if it can’t open the door,

there’s no communication there. And that often happens when your cells have a lot of inflammation. That could be from gluten dairy, it can be from genetics environment, all kinds of things. So that’s why we always talk about reducing inflammation when it comes to managing insulin resistance. Yes. And you feel like that kinda education. Check out the learn videos in the sisterhood,

which by the way, we just updated just recently with the app launch coming out really soon. We updated all the videos. They’re with all the latest, greatest information and they look amazing. Yeah, You can join us in the sisterhood. It’s the link is in the description and we have informational videos that go really into P C O S types like insulin resistance.

Yeah. Okay. Our next question is from Caitlin. Her question is, do we really have to move this slow forward to be effective? I’m really asking and not trolling. I’ve been working out for two months and have only lost two pounds. So I’m so confused. I don’t move slow though. Well, first I wanna say is if you’ve been working out for two months and you’ve lost two pounds,

I wouldn’t honestly say only. So honestly, like it’s hard to lose weight with P C O S we’ve talked about before where like, you know, calorie deficits don’t work with P C O S, it’s more about looking at the root causes of insulin resistance, inflammation, you know, adrenal fatigue. There’s so much more. So losing two pounds is still great.

So great job Caitlin. Her question was on a, on a real, we did a, a shorter workout on our Instagram at P C O S dot weight loss. And she was asking why the slow way the workouts were moving a little bit slow. So to kind of explain, let me like explain a workout really quick. So imagine a bicep curl or a squat for that matter.

There are three components or three forces that are involved in a squat. It’s your muscles, it’s momentum, and it’s gravity. Now this is what I mean. So when you’re going up and down doing your squat as you’re coming down, it’s really important to come down slowly. The reason why is the slower you go, the more time under tension your muscles are.

So the more time under tension your muscles are, the more they’re being worked. And then the more, essentially more energy you’re using up and the better workout it’s going to be. So by doing these slow way to workouts, you’re having more time under tension for each muscle. Now if you’re just dropping down really fast, you’re using momentum and gravity more because you’re just dropping down and your body’s not doing the work,

the weight’s just dropping down as if it would if you just dropped it. Or basically momentum when you’re like swinging weights back and forth. That’s why we kind of don’t swing weights back and forth. We bring them back down slow to make it more of an effective workout. That’s how you make 30 minutes of working out feel like a two two hour workout.

Good point. Okay. So I guess I mean with that, it goes perfectly into the main topic for today, which is how to pick a protein powder for P C O S. This is a great topic. I just finished my protein shake, my protein smoothly that I had after my workout. Having protein is really, really important. If you’re trying to build lean muscle and lose weight.

If you’re working out and you’re reducing inflammation, doing all the things gluten and dairy free, it’s really important to focus on having a high protein breakfast and lunch and dinner. So I like to have my high protein breakfast be around 30 grams of protein. I add my scoop of protein powder. And so let’s launch into it because choosing a protein powder can be tricky.

There’s so many like delicious sounding flavors out there and it’s like, is it good for you? Is it not? So let’s start with the first criteria, making sure that it’s dairy free. And that includes WHE protein, which is dairy. So a lot of people might suggest that you take WHE protein, but WHE is literally dairy and it could create a spike in insulin and really make it hard for you to manage inflammation.

So if you, yeah, cutting out dairy for 30 days is really important for P C O S to see if it’s gonna, if it’s, if it has been affecting your symptoms and whether or not it’s serving you. So I mean, for me in general, I used to drink way protein all the time back in the day. And even for me recently,

I’ve switched out all my protein to plant-based just because you, I don’t think it’s good to drink like WHE based or like just milk based protein every single day for anyone who works. I just, I don’t know, like personally, I just don’t feel like I, I feel like indigestion sometimes gassy, you know, like bloy, like every time after,

every time I drink protein shake, diet weigh in it, I would feel blo and like, you know, Yeah. Couple of, And you don’t even have pcos. Oh I’m sorry. Some alternatives. Episode ruined of Some alternatives for dairy are hemp protein, pumpkin seed protein, flaxseed protein, pea protein. Do you know anymore? I feel like I listed them all.

Sometimes there are blends of everything I just said. Yeah, the blends are really good cause they give you benefits of all those. They’re soy protein, but we don’t recommend soy protein every single day. Right, because it could affect your estrogen levels. Yeah. You know, it really depends. Everyone’s different. Some people are sensitive to soy and some people aren’t and it may affect your period.

Actually I had a friend who’s like period totally went off because she started using soy protein. So that one is not like the one that I highly suggest. Yeah. Like it’s moderation. Yes. But every day Probably not, right? No. We’ll give you all our favorite brands at the end. We actually have a couple of new ones that we really like.

So we’ll give you our favorite brands at the end and you can go ahead and checking them Out. With that being said, they’re usually gluten-free, so I don’t think we need to cover that. Yeah, we’ll talk about that too later cuz there’s something you have to watch out for when it comes to gluten. But next, the next area to kind of look at is the flavors.

Flavors. So there’s a lot of confusion out there when it comes to natural flavors versus fake flavors. So for example, on the label it’ll say, oh, natural flavors and then it’ll say vanilla flavor. So natural flavors is just more of a gimmicky term for giving the feel of a natural flavor. For example, like vanilla. But they still use a a essentially an artificial flavoring,

whatever you wanna call it, to give it that vanilla flavor. The natural flavor is just like a term, it’s almost like an industry term, right babe? Yeah. It doesn’t mean anything like they legally like does not mean that it’s natural or comes from nature whatsoever. It could be like a chemical made up up in some lab that tastes like vanilla.

So I wouldn’t trust the terminology natural flavors. But what, so we are actually like in the works of developing a protein powder which will come out eventually. It’s Not gonna happen for a while, but It’s gonna happen for a while. But we Don’t hope, like don’t, don’t not buy protein cause you’re waiting for Us. Don’t wait for us. But we are in the process and we have done some taste testing and I actually did put together like the blends that I wanted.

And what gives the protein flavor in a natural way is cocoa powder. It’s a SAE extract like berry extracts, blueberry extracts, things like that. Nat, like actual adding vanilla bean to it or vanilla, like these are real natural flavors. Yeah. But when you see the term natural flavors in the ingredients list, it’s not what I just said. You know,

it’s not like really natural. So keep That in mind. I do that they say natural flavor flavors, which of course makes you think, oh it’s natural, like it’s real. But that’s not what natural flavors Means. It’s one of those unregulated terms Yeah. That you just have to watch out for. And so if you’re finding a high quality protein powder that’s not flavoring it with like natural flavors and it’s actually using ingredients like extracts and stuff like that,

it might be more expensive because it’s actually natural. So I mean it’s just the investment that you would make. But We didn’t say why though babe? Like why not go like why not fake flavors? Okay. Well you know, sometimes they can play on your brain on your pituitary gland. They can be endocrine disruptors, they can trigger inflammation. I mean we don’t know what they are.

So you don’t really know like what response your body is having. Yeah. In terms of like neurotransmitters and stuff like that. Yeah. With these cool. Yeah, they’re chemicals. Chemicals, yeah. Essentially extra chemicals and you don’t know The last thing we need. Yeah. Yeah. Well last thing about flavors is if you’re okay with this cuz some people don’t like this go for the unflavored option.

So a lot of protein brands, majority of all major protein brands have unflavored options. They’re generally for like smoothies cuz it doesn’t affect the taste of your smoothie. So just a tip like go for unflavored if you’re okay with stomaching unflavored protein. And that basically gets rid of all those issues with the flavors. Alright, next thing to look at is sugar.

How much sugar should the protein powder have? So usually protein powder doesn’t have like sugar added to it, but it does Have a lot of them have a lot of them do Sugar. Sugar, Yeah. I’ve seen like a lot of protein powders that have like five grams of sugar Of like real sh It’s not Like I’m talking about like those like for like people like bodybuilders and Stuff.

Okay. Obviously we don’t want cane sugar as an ingredient or something like that. Sometimes there is a few grams of sugar because if it’s naturally flavored or sweetened with like blueberry extract, like whatever I had listed earlier. Yeah, okay. Like that might add a little bit of sugar to it. I don’t think that’s of too much concern. But what is concerning to me is when they have stevia and monk fruit and then sometimes they don’t even say they have stevia or monkfruit and they use like a different word in the ingredients list for stevia and monkfruit.

Yeah. Some long word that I can’t remember. Yeah, I forgot what this. So the issue with that is that these artificial sweeteners are like a hundred, like multiple hundred times sweeter than actual sugar. And so they trick your body into thinking you are eating something sweet and then you may have an insulin response where your insulin goes up because your body thinks you’re having sugar.

Yeah. Like your body doesn’t know whether you had real sugar or fake sugar. Your taste buds are tasting sugar sweetness. So as a result your blood’s like your body’s like, Oh we’re having sugar, let’s release to our insulin hormone. Yes. And what happens when insulin’s high? You know, eventually when insulin is high for too long, too many times and over a period of like you’re constantly having this protein that has fake sugar in it,

cvr whatever it is, insulin resistance starts to develop and get worse and worse and worse along with other habits that may be triggering insulin resistance. And it just adds fuel to the flames. And so I do not suggest, especially when people try keto and then all they’re having is like artificial sweeteners. Yeah. Just I don’t suggest substituting with these sweeteners. And if you’re craving sugar and you feel like,

well what am I gonna do? Keep in mind that this can be an addicting cycle. The more you crave sugar, the more you have stevia or whatever it is. And the more your insulin goes up, the more you crave sugar, the more you have, the more your insulin goes up and the cycle continues. And I’ve had patients who were addicted to sweeteners addicted because they’re like,

I literally will die if I do not eat something sweet. You, you don’t understand. This is such an addiction. And I’m like, I know the sweetener CIA or whatever it is you’re having is fueling that. So it’s really important to break that cycle and, and if you have cravings, you know, sometimes diet changes aren’t enough to help with cravings.

You have to try supplements. Ovasitol is your friend. OVAs is definitely something to consider. If you feel like you can’t control your sugar cravings, throw it in your smoothie with your protein. Yep, Yep. Amen to that. And just a last bit, last tid bit to end that out just with your, with your protein powder, again, look out for the artificial sweeteners like Splenda,

things like things of that nature. Definitely avoid those kind of artificial sweeteners like Splenda and stuff. And then of course natural sweeteners like the monk fruits, Stevia, again, I know this is may sound a little surprising, but we just don’t recommend them because they can still affect your insulin levels and affect your insulin resistance. And there are a lot of new research studies showing this.

And also that if it can also affect your gut microbiome, it can get rid of your good gut microbiome, which can have a huge effect on your entire immune system, inflammation, et cetera. So again, some things to think about. It’s not that stevia is bad if you have it once in a while, but of course if you have it every day all the time to replace sugar,

that’s when it is a problem. Did you hear about that sister who took Ovasitol and finally got her period after a year of not having one? Incredible, I see those kinds of messages on Instagram a lot. How does that even happen? Well Ovasitol helps with healing insulin resistance, a common root issue that most P C O S sisters have. And by targeting insulin resistance,

we’re seeing sisters kick those crazy cravings finally regulate their periods, ovulate and improve their ED quality. Each packet of ovasitol has a 40 to one ratio of my inositol and D chiro. Inositol. This ratio is similar to the ratio that should be found in the body. But with women like me who have P C O S, this ratio is often imbalanced.

So taking a vasal can be super effective in treating insulin resistance starting from the root of the issue. So awesome. It tastes like nothing. So just warn me when you put it in a cup so I don’t drink it. You got it boo. Check out the link in the description to get 15% off your order. And then the last couple of things to look at,

and again we’re gonna tell you our favorite brands in just a little bit, is to kind of look at the purity and quality of the brand. So as you all know with our supplement line, we really focused on purity and quality with having third party testing, having, you know man the manufacturing warehouse being you know, tested and making sure they were all following proper policies.

So basically all this stuff, purity in quality is really important because you wanna make sure that the protein powder you buy doesn’t have like added fillers and ingredients cuz they do, they can add a lot of ingredients to make things taste better. So again, going back to colors, flavors, sweeteners, the sugar out alcohols, the, the different kinds of dextrins like malto,

dextrin, there’s a lot of fillers that can contain gluten, of course vegetable oils, fats, thickeners and gums for example. Like they protein powders. A lot of times companies will add a thickening agent so that when you put protein powder and you add water to it, it like blends smoothly. Oh Gosh. Yeah. Like they add different kinds of thickening agents to make it like that,

but it’s not natural. You know, like we’re not supposed to have those things. So of course there’s also fillers to make it feel like it’s more in general just like less ingredients the better. Yeah. Like pure hemp protein works, were safe. This is good. Yeah. You know, obviously it’s not the best protein powder and it’s really tantalizing to see like pumpkin spice protein powder and there’s mixing it with their water or with muffins and like it just looks like this delicious thing.

Yeah. But you have to think of the P C O S picture and your body and you know, realize that everything’s not made for a P C A woman with P C O S and it can be triggering and it can not be as beneficial as we want it to be when we’re having our protein shaken. I, I think that it’s always important to look at things through A P C O S lens and not just like what everyone else is doing.

And yeah, even though like a woman is selling pumpkin spice protein, that doesn’t mean it’s like necessarily good for us. Let’s do, okay, so let’s, let’s talk about our favorite protein powder brands. Like the, which ones do we like the most? So what’s your favorite one right now? What’s your go-to protein powder Right now? I really like the ingredients in Garden of Life.

Unflavored, No stevia, nothing. Just Garden of Life. Just, It’s just powder. Powder. It’s like chocolate, No flavor and no snow sugar. It is what it is. And I’ve gotten used to it. My palette is used to it. It’s not like the first time I drank I was like, what the heck? Now I’m like,

whatever. I don’t even care when you mix it in your protein shake with half a banana and a couple berries, you know, you can add some vanilla extract to it. Like it tastes fine. It doesn’t have to be this incredible sweet, delicious pumpkin spice. Amazing thing every morning. Like it can just be healthy and good for my P C O S.

Yeah, I really like the Garden of Life. It’s, it’s my fave and we’ll put that in the, we’ll put that in the link in description for Amazon if you wanna order it. But it’s, it’s a new one that we just recently got. And again, it has no added fake flavor so it’s unflavored and it has no sugar and no novia.

So it’s basically just pure protein powder and I Blends of Vegetables. Yeah. And it’s all made from like a blend of it’s plant-based seed. Yeah. But I think it also has like, like a lot of nutrients from the seeds of course. Like we talked about earlier, like when you combine pumpkin seeds and then like other types of seeds, my mind’s going a little bit Blank.

Seeds and flax seeds and hemp seeds in it. Yeah. You get so many like nutrients and natural vitamins. And then lastly I think it also has like probiotics and stuff. I’m Not, it does have a blend of That. Yeah. I don’t have the bottle next to us so I wish we did, but yeah, so it’s a great option.

It’s our favorite. What’s our second one, babe? Next? I love philosophy love. It’s called philosophy love protein powder. The cocoa magic flavor. It doesn’t have as much protein in it as I would like in one serving and it does get expensive. So what I do is I have the Garden of Life one and then I add a little spoonful of the philosophy,

love cocoa magic one cuz it tastes so freaking good and that like gives my smoothie a chocolatey twist to it or it could just add cocoa powder. It has real cocoa in it to give it, to give it that chocolatey taste. So going back to again, using real flavors versus fake. Then I also like hemp protein, just regular old hemp. That’s a third one.

Yeah, Just like flat out hemp protein. Yeah, it’s from Amazon. What was it called? Just Like hemp. I know the brand. Yeah, it’s the 365 I think. I think so. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s the Amazon 365 brand and it’s just called hemp protein powder again will link in a description. Yeah. And again,

like none of these are going to obviously taste as good as like the amazing pumpkin spice proteins that are being advertised. Chocolate, you know, shock litty, Whatever, whatever brand with like 20 grams of sugar, Whatever. Yeah. Or with Stevie in it. But you know what, you can make it work. You can get creative with your smoothies.

We have lots of recipes in the sisterhood. We have a blueberry pie recipe, we have a pumpkin spice smoothie recipe, blueberry pie, smoothie recipe, pumpkin spice smoothie recipe. Like these are cleverly flavored with vanilla banana coconut, like whatever it is that really like gives it an extra umph that makes it delicious. So you’re not eating like chalk in the morning.

Yeah. Yeah. And it’s like actually fun. But yeah, that’s how I like to amp it Up. Yeah. And the good thing with these protein powders is they give you a great boost of like nutrients and vitamins, adaptogens, like all three options that we just named. So it’s, it’s a great, you know, great side boost to your protein powder every morning when you Have it.

Yeah, that’s true. The philosophy one has adaptogens. Yeah. All right, so we’ll put those links in the description if you wanna check those protein powders out. Before we end the episode though, we want to go to our favorite part of every, every episode that we do, which is the wins of the week. These are sisters who are managing their symptoms,

reversing P C O S, losing weight, essentially showing P C O S how the bottle. All right. All right. Okay. Our first winner, why don’t you kick us off? Tommy Stephanie Maas. She says, What’s nsv? I? I don’t know what that means. Don’t know. Let me Go. I finally found my carb tolerance.

It was an interesting week of tweaking meals and trying new things. I now love quinoa and pumpkin spice spice smoothies. It’s amazing. I’ve already had it in four times. Quin one pumpkin spice smoothie, my version of it only has 19 grams of carbs. My tolerance is between 20 and 25 grams per meal, roughly 120 to 125 grams of carbs per day.

Anything higher has me falling asleep immediately after meals or I couldn’t stop eating anything lower. Has me feeling super drained all day. What are your favorite meals and snacks you’ve discovered since testing out your carb tolerance and the sisterhood meals? Well, I’m so happy for you for finding your carb tolerance because nobody wants to be falling asleep all day. So that’s great that you know what your limits are and that you found a smoothie that’s literally working for you in the mornings.

25 grams of car, I mean 20 grams of carbs and that’s wonderful. I’m so happy. Yeah. And and SV means non-scale victory. Oh, Perfect. Love that. Non-scale victory. You are loving the recipes in the sisterhood. Good for you. Yeah, I Love that. I love them too. Next we have Kiri Smith. She says,

I spent four hours on Sunday meal prepping for the week. I’m not a fan of the meal prepping itself, but I am a fan of the extra time with my husband during the week. All of this is gluten and dairy free. I do substitutions for my husband, but for the most part he eats what I do. Everything comes in at about 120 to 140 grams of carbs depending on if I eat the chocolate flourless protein brownies.

I also made. And Look at the picture. Look All those, that’s awesome. Amazing meals they made and seems Like groceries, protein, pancakes and some gluten-free pasta and chicken and sausage. That’s wonderful. Yeah, meal prepping is a great way to save time during the week. Like you would be surprised how much time you could save by just waking up early on a Sunday,

getting a bunch of stuff done and then, you know, your nighttime routine is like so much more relaxed cuz you’re not rushing to make dinner or your lunch is already ready and you’re not scrambling to get it together. So I think that’s great to meal prep a little bit. And when our app comes out, it will certainly make meal prepping easier because we have a meal plan on there and a shopping list feature.

You can generate a shopping list for like Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or like the whole week or whatever. Yeah. And yeah, it’ll tell you what to do and how to do it. A shopping list that you can check off too that you, that you got the, the stuff that you needed too. So yes. All right, sisters,

Thank you so much for listening to today’s episode. If you, if you enjoyed, please subscribe and leave a review. We, we appreciate every single one. And yeah, enjoy the rest of your week and I guess we’ll be back next week. We’ll Be back next week. We will. We will, Right? Yeah. Talk to you soon.

Take care. Bye. If you enjoyed listening to this podcast, you have to come check out the sisterhood. It’s my monthly membership site where sisters, just like you are learning how to move through the stages of P C O S from stage one cold and alone at the doctor’s office to stage five, nailing the P C O S lifestyle, pollutant and dairy free.

Get ready to finally feel in control of your body again.

 

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