T Nation

Sources of Protein


Hey guys, just a question that arose out of curiosity.

I've heard it said that meat is the best source for protein in comparison to a protein shake. Knowing that proteins are made of amino acids why would it make sense for one to be better than the other? Amino acids are found in meat AND in shakes and they are structurally identical... in fact, I would argue that they are more easily absorbed via shake because they are free amino acids, not peptides.

Maybe a stupid question but I'm always curious!


Even if that's true, I'm not sure what it is, but my muscles always look much fuller when I eat more whole foods and less shakes.



I don't know whether this has something to do with digestion, other ingredients in meat (such as iron, fatty acids, ...) or something else, but not only do my muscles look better and fuller when I eat more whole foods, whole foods also work much better for me when I want to gain weight/muscle.

Dieting for a show, I hold more muscle if I eat more whole foods. Even if I slighly increase calorie intake while using mostly shakes, I tend to lose more mass and fullness compared to eating whole foods almost exclusivly.