Not all proteins are created equal - this is true factually and figuratively.
I recently read Daniel Austin's excellent The Way of the Vegan Meathead, which gives an excellent overview of how to eat a vegan diet specialised for weight-lifting, and with a specific focus on powerlifting.
One of the most interesting sections was one which the author's note on the inside cover had highlighted would be probably less useful in Ireland and Europe more generally - a comparison of protein powders on a very basic level. The two primary factors of interest in a powder are the calories required to gain the requisite amount of protein, and the cost of the protein itself. Given that many lifters will buy large amounts of protein regularly, these two factors are highly important. To this end, I've done a similar comparison to the one in Austin's book for powders that are readily available in Ireland. I may expand this list as other brands become available, or even to other non-powder vegan protein sources if I have the time.
All nutritional information in this table is per 100 grams. MyP means MyProtein, OptNut means Optimum Nutrition, Bulk means Bulk Powders.
|Brand||Calories||Fat||Carbs||Protein||Fibre||Price per KG||Flavour||Calories per g protein||Price per g protein||Notes|
|MyP Pea isolate unflavoured||388||5.5||2.6||80||-||€10.31||NO||4.85||0.01|
|MyP Soy isolate||360||1.5||1.8||90||-||€15.74||YES||4.00||0.02||Avoid unflavoured at all costs|
|Bulk Soya Isolate||378||3.3||1||91||0||€15.99||NO||4.15||0.02|
|Bulk Super Pea||395||6||3||80||1||€14.99||NO||4.94||0.02|
|MyP Pea isolate||388||5.5||2.6||80||-||€17.99||YES||4.85||0.02|
|Applied Nutrition Vegan Pro||355||2.87||6.5||82||1.1||€19.02||YES||4.33||0.02||Price approximated from 2.1KG package|
|MyP Brown Rice||423||2.1||3.8||78||-||€20.18||NO||5.42||0.03|
|MyP Vegan Protein Blend||366||1.8||14||73||0.5||€22.07||YES||5.01||0.03||Some flavours more expensive|
|Bulk Brown Rice||397||3.5||3.8||80||3.8||€24.99||NO||4.96||0.03|
|USN 100% Plant Based||413||8.67||5||76.67||-||€33.32||YES||5.39||0.04||Price approximated from 900g package|
|Bulk Protein blend||371||6.1||10.3||66.5||6.6||€32.99||YES||5.58||0.05|
|OptNut Plant||397||6.1||13||68||2.5||€36.47||YES||5.84||0.05||Available only in 684g package - price approximated|
|Reflex Plant Based||354||5.5||3.5||70||5||€39.98||YES||5.06||0.06||Price approximated from 600g package|
|Vega Clean||401||5.9||8.8||75||6.5||€43.41||YES||5.35||0.06||Available only in 518g package. Price includes Holland and Barrett discount|
|Bulk Organic Pumpkin||407||11||3||58||16||€34.99||NO||7.02||0.06|
|Vega Essentials||402||10||14||60.2||11.3||€38.36||YES||6.68||0.06||Available only in 684g package - price approximated. Price includes Holland and Barrett discount|
|Nuzest clean lean||360||1.48||2.52||84||2.3||€54.99||YES||4.29||0.07|
|Sunwarrior Chocolate||400||10||12||68||-||€46.65||YES||5.88||0.07||Price approximated from 750g package.|
|Plantforce synergy||366||6.6||5.9||66||8||€49.93||YES||5.55||0.08||Price approximated from 900g package|
When I say avoid unflavoured isolates, I really mean it. They are some of the worst things imaginable. Thanks to Daniel Austin's aforementioned book for the inspiration to do this comparison.
- 2020-09-10: Added Sunwarrior, USN, Nuzest, Plantforce products.