Best Soy Protein Powder | Reviews and Buying Guide
Every vegan out there must know that the humble soybean can offer innumerable health benefits, and its versatile nature makes it a fit for a wide array of vegan dishes. Known for its high protein content, it is no surprise that soy is one of the most common variations of protein powder types.
I have been trying out different protein powders for years now, and it is safe to say I have a few opinions based on my experience. In this article, I will list out the 5 best soy protein powders according to me.
I have also thrown in a detailed soy protein powder guide in the latter half. If you want a cheaper but more convenient protein powder variant, soy-based protein powder is worth considering!
Best Soy Based Protein Powder – My Top 5 Picks
1. Naturade Total Soy Protein Powder
This tasty vanilla and chocolate flavored weight loss proponent is one of the best-tasting soy protein powders in the market.
With more dietary fiber and 47% less sugar, this soy protein powder can replace a meal if consumed properly. It reduces sodium intake, saturated fat, and cholesterol.
Throw in another 30 to 60 minutes of light exercise 4 times a week, and you are good to go!.The powder contains 24 vitamins and minerals and is certified lactose and gluten-free.
If you are looking for a non-GMO soy product to facilitate weight loss for men and women alike, a serving a day of this soy protein powder might just be the answer.
- Available in Chocolate and Vanilla flavors
- Non-GMO and gluten free
- Containing about 35% of the daily intake of vitamins and minerals
- With 8gms/serving, it might not be the best if you are trying to limit sugar intake
- Contains artificial flavors and sweeteners
- Contains ingredients derived from milk, so not vegan
2. Bulk Supplements Soy Protein Isolate Powder
When speaking about the best soy protein powders, Bulk Supplements must be in the conversation. As the name suggests, you get a better value if you buy their products in bulk.
The Bulk Supplements soy-based protein powder contains less than 1 gram of fat and carbs per scoop, making it a great choice for health-conscious people.
Here’s something that most companies seem to miss: Bulk Supplements lab tests their products for label accuracy so that you get exactly what you are promised.
If you are a strict vegan and looking to build muscle and advance your overall fitness goal, this soy protein powder comes recommended. This powder facilitates muscle endurance and recovery by preventing muscle breakdown during exercises.
- Extremely cheap
- Lab-tested for label accuracy.
- No other ingredients apart from soy protein isolate
- Unflavored, so not the tastiest in the market
3. NOW Sports Nutrition Soy Protein Isolate
Much like Bulk Supplements, NOW Sports has also carved out a niche for themselves among the health-conscious demographic.
One of their most talked-about products is their soy-based protein powder, and the truth is told, it does pack a punch.
It contains zero carbohydrates and just about half a gram of fat in each serving. If you are looking for a non-GMO and kosher soy protein powder, this one is a great pick.
This one is heavily recommended for athletes. In fact, they have been certified by Informed Sport and Informed Choice. Simply put, it means this product has been tested for impurities and banned substances. So, if you want a protein powder that doesn’t make you feel guilty due to its fat content, this one can be the answer.
- No carbs
- Tested for banned substances and impurities
- Non-GMO and kosher
- Not the tastiest
- Foams up a lot when mixed
4. Shaklee – Life Shake Soy Protein Powder
This one is a little on the pricier side, but rest assured, you will reap the benefits to the fullest extent. Its soy-based protein contains soy lichen, so its mixability is greatly elevated compared to its competitors.
This brand also throws in a little guar gum to help thicken and stabilize the drink. You can trust this one if you are not the biggest fan of artificial sweeteners and flavors. It contains absolutely no artificial sweeteners, making it that much healthier.
Its inclusion of natural carbohydrates ensures it tastes better than most other soy protein powders. Moreover, it contains a good amount of Vitamin B, so it is a great addition to our daily diets.
- Added natural carbohydrates included
- Contains a variety of B-vitamins
- 9 grams of added sugars (fructose and dextrose)
5. Puritan’s Pride Soy Protein Isolate Powder
This is one of the most low-fat soy protein powder, which also happens to be gluten-free. Each pack comes with approx. 32 servings containing 24 grams of protein, 1.1 grams of fat, 0 grams of carbs, and 110 calories.
If you are worried about quality, this brand assures buyers that it is 100% isolated soy protein and soy lecithin.
It is free from preservatives and flavors as well. With this, you will get a steady intake of protein, vital nutrients, and amino acids that our body requires daily.
If you are wondering what the best way to consume this is, the brand recommends you mix one serving of this soy-based protein powder with milk or any other beverage and consume it once a day. Do not forget to add some exercises to your routine to get more benefits.
- Extremely nutritious
- Non-GMO and carb-free
- 100% isolated soy protein
- No preservatives or artificial flavoring
- Doesn’t have much to show for a taste
Buying the Best Soy Protein Powder – A Buying Guide
1. What is Soy Protein
Now that we know about the best soy protein powders in the market, it is high time we understand what soy protein exactly is. Soy protein comes in 3 different variations: soy flour, soy protein isolate, and concentrates. It is the isolates that are commonly used in protein powders and health supplements owing to their muscle-building qualities.
Here’s something you might not have known: the essential amino acid in soy protein is not something our body produces naturally, so if you are on a restricted diet, soy protein supplements might just be a great option. Soy protein’s high amino acid content qualifies it as a “complete protein,” like numerous pulses and legumes.
Soy protein isolate is frequently used in protein shakes as a viable alternative to whey. Lastly, it is one of the cheapest supplemental protein sources that can be found in foods such as soy milk and tofu.
2. Are There Types of Soy Protein?
Essentially, there are 2 distinct types of soy protein: soy protein concentrate and soy protein isolate. Both are sourced from soybean meal, which is dehulled, defatted unadulterated soybeans.
The former is what we have been speaking about in our list of best soy protein powders. It is common in protein shakes and supplements with 90 to 95% protein content and almost no carbs or fats.
Soy protein concentrate, on the other hand, is made by removing some of the carbohydrates from the dehulled, defatted soybean meal. So, you can find a use for it in cereals, baked goods, and similar food items.
It is extremely easy to digest and includes a ton of fiber, so if you want something safe for children, older people, and pregnant women alike, this will keep a close eye on their health.
3. Whey Vs Soy Protein | How Does Soy Compare to Whey Standard?
What exactly is the difference between whey and soy protein? Well, soy protein is naturally high in its protein content and is moreover low in carbs and fat. This makes it ideal for protein shakes, sports drinks, and vegan meal replacement shakes. You can often find this in soy protein isolate forms which have 90 to 95% protein content.
As for whey protein, it is extracted from cow’s milk, so it can be suitable for vegetarians but definitely not vegans. There is 3.5% natural protein and 4% fat already present in cow’s milk, and once that is separated from the milk, it goes through extensive fat, water, and carb removal procedures.
In short, both soy protein and whey protein are evenly matched in terms of protein content and their benefits, with both featuring all 9 essential amino acids that our body cannot produce by itself.
4. Is Soy Protein Bad for Men?
There’s a little bone of contention regarding soy protein’s benefits for men. Not particularly just soy protein but vegan protein at large. It is somehow deemed inferior to animal protein and the many benefits of plant-based protein are entirely overlooked.
Many believe that soy protein can be detrimental to men due to its supposed negative effect on testosterone. It is true that soy contains phytoestrogen or plant estrogen that, some have contested, elevates our estrogen levels and brings down our testosterone levels, but here’s the whole truth:
- Plenty of foods contain plant estrogen, including but not limited to oats, apples, coffee, and rice. So, if you are planning to skip phytoestrogen, you might as well say goodbye to a bunch of other healthy food items.
- Phytoestrogen poses tons of health benefits. It acts as an anti-oxidant and boasts antiviral as well as cancer-preventive properties.
- Lastly, the fact that soy elevates estrogen and reduces testosterone is not a full-proof fact. In fact, the jury is still out on that, with extensive research being carried out to discredit its accuracy.
The bottom line is that a little of nothing is bad, but if you suffer from hormonal imbalances, it might be best to seek out a physician or dietician first before consuming soy-based protein powders.
Other Factors to Consider While Selecting the Best Value Vegan Protein Powder
1. Calorie to Protein Ratio
When looking for the best soy protein powder, this is a rather important thing to take note of. Always check the calorie to protein ratio and gauge from the labels whether the protein is lean enough. If fat or carbs leads to an elevated calorie count, it might not be the best idea for weight loss.
If you are on the hunt for the best soy protein powder for weight loss, you cannot give taste a lot of thought. Most budget soy-based protein powders are usually unflavored. So, if you like a little taste in your supplements, you can go for best tasting protein powder or else you can mix some soy protein in smoothies or baked goods and turn them into delicious snacks.
Needless to say, nobody likes a lumpy protein shake, so make sure you get yourself a protein powder that can mix well into other ingredients. If you are someone who prepares their protein shake on the go, having a soy-based protein powder that mixes well is essential. However, if you want to use a blender or a shaker, you might entirely be on the safe side.
One of the most common complaints you will come across when looking for supplements and powders to make up for your vegan deficiencies is stomach issues caused by these products. If you recently turned vegan then you are bound to face various stomach problems as digestion is a crucial factor for dietary supplements.
And it goes without saying, not all products will suit your stomach, and if they do not seem to go well together, you could be in for all kinds of stomach upset and pain. So, it is always best to consult a physician or dietitian before making a judgment call.
That’s all about the best soy protein powders. Make sure you read the labels before making a decision, and if you are vegan, do look out for inconsistencies and ambiguities in the ingredient list. Most importantly, if you find anything iffy, do not think twice about consulting a healthcare physician immediately.
If you want a soy-based protein powder without breaking the bank, the Bulk Supplements Soy Protein Powder is highly affordable and effective, purely on protein per dollar value. If you are a body builder and preparing your own meals include soy protein in your meal plan by adding it to daily shakes and smoothies, and there you are in for a nutritious ride.