Best Protein Powder for Bodybuilding Gains & Recovery 2020

You can’t maintain or build muscle mass without sufficient protein intake.

Think of a group of bros standing around the gym. What are they drinking? Most probably, protein shakes. In fact, protein powder is probably the first supplement people associate with bodybuilding/weightlifting. And for good reason. Protein serves as the building blocks for muscle growth and good protein powders will contain high quality ingredients with a good balance of fat and carbs to help you lose weight and build muscle.

Here’s what happens when you don’t consume enough protein while working out in the gym:

  • Your body can go catabolic – with a lack of protein, your body can begin using your muscles as an energy source.
  • You’ll find it hard to maintain or gain muscle mass – countless studies have shown that adequate protein intake is required for bodybuilding.

No-one wants to train their *ss off in the gym to see no results especially when it comes to fat loss. Or see any losses in muscle mass. As a result, protein powder is pretty damn important to bodybuilders (and anyone who trains in the gym aiming to maintain or gain muscle mass). We’ve safely established that. Knowing what to take and when to take it is more than important when looking to achieve all of your bodybuilding goals from the best whey protein and a quality whey protein.

So, what’s the issue?

Well, there are now many different types of protein powders available on the market – soy protein, whey protein, pea protein, brown-rice protein to name just a few. But which is best whey protein for you?

In this article, we’ll tell you which protein powder supplement we recommend as the best whey protein. Followed by the reasons why we’ve chosen a specific product.

Take a look:

Performance Lab Protein: Our #1 Recommended Protein Powder

Performance Lab ProteinKey Benefits:

  • Superior muscle-building support – leucine in Performance Lab Protein absorbs 30% faster than leucine from whey [1].
  • Proven boosts in athletic performance – it uses Oryzatein®, a form of brown-rice protein proven to help increase lean muscle mass [2].
  • World’s cleanest protein powder – it’s 100% allergen-free, with no use of artificial fillers or flavors.

Key Features:

  • 20g protein per serving – more than enough protein to help you reach your target daily protein intake
  • Only 100 calories per one shake – easily used regardless of whether you’re cutting, maintaining or bulking for little calories and their intake.
  • Delicious chocolate taste – customers claim it’s the best tasting powder they’ve used.

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Check out where Performance Labs SPORT Protein fell on our list of the Best Protein Powders!

Quick Summary

Recent research concluded that leucine in Oryzatein® brown-rice protein absorbed faster than leucine in whey protein concentrate or a whey isolate.

When we saw that Performance Lab had used Oryzatein® in their Protein Powder, we were impressed enough to check it out.

And we liked what we saw.

We found that it was much cleaner than other protein powders out there. Naturally flavoured with organic cocoa, vanilla bean and ceylon cinnamon – this is the best tasting protein powder many customers have tried. Being a brown-rice protein powder, anyone can use it for fat loss and muscle growth since it is low in calories and packed with nutrients.

Regardless of whether you’re dairy intolerant, vegan, allergic to soy or gluten…Because Performance Lab Protein contains no allergens at all.

Supplying 20g protein (and only 100 calories) per serving, Performance Lab Protein can be easily included in your diet at all times – whether you’re cutting or bulking for your bodybuilding goals.

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Why Protein is Essential to a Bodybuilding Diet

In a nutshell, amino acids are used by your body to repair (and build) new muscle fibers and are essential in a high quality whey concentrate, whey isolate, or a vegan whey protein.

So, it doesn’t take Arnold Schwarzenegger to tell you how important protein is, for you to believe it. (Although, has stated: “If you’re not paying attention to protein, you’re doing it all wrong.”)

Ultimately, you need to consume a certain amount of protein in order to build the muscular, bodybuilder physique you’ve always wanted.

strong man

How much protein do I need to consume?

There have been tons of different arguments around this question. And there are also different answers in clinical studies.

Scientific American believe that 0.45g of protein per lb bodyweight is enough. They also mentioned that studies found consuming over 1.2g protein per lb bodyweight provided no improvements in muscle-building.

For this reason, while you do need ‘enough’, you also don’t need to go overboard with your protein intake. 0.45-1.2g protein per pound of bodyweight is commonly accepted as optimal.

No Whey, Jose?!

Let’s answer the big question. Is brown-rice protein powder really better than whey protein? Short Answer: Most likely, yes!

Here’s the long answer…

Clinical studies show that high quality brown-rice protein is at least equally effective as whey protein powder for muscle growth in bodybuilding.

There’s an argument that brown-rice protein is inferior to whey protein due to being naturally lower in the amino acid, lysine. But this belief is not accurate. In fact, one particular study conducted by Ryan Lowery in 2013 [3] even concluded:

“Rice protein isolate administration post resistance exercise decreases fat-mass and increases lean body mass, skeletal muscle hypertrophy, power and strength comparable to whey protein isolate”

So, there you have it. Brown rice protein is certainly no worse than whey protein.

Here’s what could make brown-rice protein even ‘better’ than whey protein…

As we mentioned earlier, a few clinical studies have shown that the leucine in Oryzatein® brown-rice protein absorbs faster than leucine found in whey protein and can seriously aid in muscle growth.

For this reason, you could argue that Oryzatein® brown-rice protein has the ‘edge’ when compared to whey protein powders. Especially used post-workout after weightlifting sessions in the gym for bodybuilding.

Other Reasons to choose Brown-Rice protein over Whey Protein?

You’re a grown *ss man, so you can make your own decisions in life. But there are many legitimate reasons to avoid whey protein… Whey, Soy & Pea Protein can have dubious origins.

It can be genetically modified or be sourced from animals known to be treated with oestrogens, antibiotics or other chemicals. This can negatively affect human health and hurt muscle growth.

Also, you may be allergic to dairy/lactose or soy. So there’s that.

Conclusion: Best Protein Powder for Bodybuilding

There are tons of people out there who complain about bloating or have stomach issues after drinking whey protein powder.

Now that the ‘rumour’ about brown-rice protein not being as effective as whey protein (in terms of maintaining or building muscle) has been dispelled, there’s no reason not to try it out for performance and muscle growth.

Our #1 choice of Protein Powder is Performance Lab Protein.

It’s claimed to be the “world’s cleanest, most effective muscle-boosting protein powder” on the market. And in many customers’ opinions, it’s also the best tasting too.


[1] Jordan M J. The effects of 8 weeks of whey or rice protein supplementation on body composition and exercise performance. Nutr J. 2013; 12: 86.

[2] Douglas S K. Amino Acid Composition of an Organic Brown Rice Protein Concentrate and Isolate Compared to Soy and Whey Concentrates and Isolates. Foods. 2014 Sep; 3(3): 394–402.

[3] Ryan L. Rice Protein Increases Lean Body Mass, Muscle Hypertrophy, Power and Strength Comparable to Whey Protein Following Resistance Exercise.