Protein shakes for kids, are they good? Or are they bad? Learn more!
Are protein shakes for kids bad?
I had a parent email me this question not too long ago. First, the “kid” in this situation was 15 years old. The answer would vary a bit for those younger than 12-14 years old.
Why does the kid need the protein drink?
Our first question; why & what is the goal with the protein drink? Is the goal to help a growing kid get enough protein? If so, then yes, use a protein supplement to help the kid get enough protein.
We suggest SFH here at the gym for those that don’t mind stevia sweetened products. For those that do mind, we suggest Puori, sweetened with coconut palm sugar. Both come in vanilla or chocolate. There are many options when it comes to protein supplements. A general rule is the less ingredients the better!
Food should always be the primary source of protein.
A major concern for kids is if they are trying to substitute eating with something “easier”. Or using a supplement to replace a meal. Or just being lazy and not preparing food for themselves at meal time.
A protein supplement is a good addition to their daily food intake. A supplement should not replace proper food intake. Again, food should be the primary way a kid is fueling their bodies. However, the protein drink is a great addition for the kid that is hungry at school or activities between meals &/or is looking to increase their daily protein intake.
When would a protein shake for a kid be bad?
Unfortunately, there are a lot of social media driven things that affect our youth. TikTok, instagram and snapchat is full of terribly misleading information that is readily accessible for our kids. This information goes “viral” and can have super negative effects on eating habits of the youth of America.
We have had kids come in and show us “viral” videos talking about how to lose 10 pounds quickly with liquid diets and other absurd things that aren’t good for the long term health of the kid (nor anyone at any age). The reality is that weight loss doesn’t work like that. Losing 10 pounds from not eating for a week and only drinking liquids isn’t a healthy or a sustainable process. Not to mention the long term consequences & disordered eating habits that can occur from following such information.
Another one of these trends on social media is villainizing the consumption of meat(animal protein). The truth of the matter is we have more obese kids than we have ever had in America. Americans eat far less meat than we ever have. It might be causation and correlation but no matter what the current strategies are for our nutrition, they are failing us.
Protein shakes for kids
Protein shakes for kids in general aren’t bad. Real food should be the primary source of protein but due to travel, athletics, scheduling etc, it is okay to supplement with a protein shake to ensure your kid is getting the correct amount of protein a day.