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Types of Protein

Go to any supermarket, chemist, or nutrition store, online or in the real world and you will no doubt be overwhelmed by the colours, names, offers, promises, and types of proteins.

All these make the buying decision harder. This complexity often results in no decision and leaving the store empty-handed or with the wrong product.

Types such as whey, plant, pea, or Casein. These can be concentrate, isolate, or hydrolysed, not to mention the number of flavours and in certain cases additives for wellbeing.

Confused yet? So were we!

On this page, we try to help decode what's available, what this means, and why we only sell a 1kg vanilla flavoured whey protein isolate.

 Types and variants or protein available

Animal Based Protein Powders

Whey and Casein

Whey and casein protein is derived from animals, actually cow's milk, so are animal-based protein powders. They are both a by-product of the cheese and yoghurt manufacturing process with about 80% being casein and 20% being whey.

Animal proteins are the most complete proteins with higher levels of essential and non-essential amino acids. If you are into anything that involves muscles, animal protein might just be the choice for you.

Whey proteins can then be either Concentrate, Isolate, or Hydrolysed which relates to filtering undertaken and the resulting amount of protein in each one.

Concentrate has around 80% protein, Isolate after undergoing additional processes have around 90% plus protein, and Hydrolysed is broken down further with heat or enzymes for easier digestion. 

The higher the % protein, the lower the carbs and fats. Whey protein generally absorbs quicker than a casein protein which can take 4-5 hours to absorb.

Plant Based Protein Powder

Pea protein

Pea proteins come from yellow split peas and are extracted firstly by drying and grinding the peas into fine flour-like powder, and then mixing them with water to separate fibre and starch.

Pea protein is available in Concentrate and Isolate form which requires additional processing and includes less starch and fibre.

While pea is a complete protein and one of the few plant-based proteins with all the amino acids, it does not always have comparable amounts of these to animal-based proteins and specifically lacks methionine which is needed to produce cysteine which is the precursor to the production of glutathione in the body.

The other consideration for you is the source of the peas, so be sure to read the label if pea protein is your thing and make an informed decision.

Plant protein

Plant proteins can vary and include pea, but also soy, hemp, and brown rice proteins.

Soy has all the essential amino acids and a high protein content. Hemp protein comes from the cannabis plant, you read that right, and is high in omega 3 and omega 6 fats. Brown rice protein contains all the amino acids but is too low in lysine to be considered complete.

Plant or Animal Protein?

A personal choice, but here are some factors to consider:
  • Whey on average has a higher percentage protein
  • Whey has a complete amino acid profile
  • To get this from plant-based proteins is possible, but you would have to mix up different sources of protein with complementary amino acids profiles to ensure optimal ratios
  • Whey generally has higher leucine which stimulates muscle protein synthesis, thus muscle growth and strength
  • Protein powders generally include flavouring to make them more tolerable. Always check out what’s in yours.
  • Plant-based proteins are dairy-free and can be less inflammatory in the gut for those who are lactose or dairy intolerant.
  • Plant-based proteins can be a mix of plant proteins to keep costs down. Consider the make-up or ratios of a plant-based protein as this mix will determine its effectiveness.

Animal-based and plant-based proteins can make a good addition to any diet, depending on what it is you are trying to achieve.

Whey Protein Isolate

Our Old Bull Protein is a whey Isolate, so animal-based to be a complete protein with higher levels of amino acids and also a higher protein % for rapid absorption.

Protein Prices by Type 

Pricing a new product is key when you launch, especially in a somewhat large and confusing market, We gathered data on 111 different proteins available instore in Australia, including Woolworths, Coles, Chemist Warehouse and then several online sports and nutrition specialist stores.

Prices ranged from $1.60 to $18 per 100g of protein

Key price drivers to price in order, included the following:

  • Size of container
  • Additional vitamins or minerals
  • Concentrate or Isolate
  • Retailer
  • Flavour

Protein prices have increased substantially due to COVID shortages and freight pricing, in some cases 30%+. These increases are not factored in below, but will be in our next round of data gathering.

1kg was the most popular size (Ranged 900g to 1.1kg) with 35 (32%) of the 111 products reviewed available in this size.

Forty-six  (41%) were available in smaller sizes less than 900g with the smallest size excluding single use sachets being 100g, much to our surprise given  the average protein powder users needs.

Woolies and Coles tended mostly toward the smaller sizes. Average cost per 100g at Woolies as $7.40, and for containers less than 500g this jumped to $8.59. At Coles this was $7.81 and jumped more steeply to $10.17 for containers less than 500g.

Chemist warehouse average of all protein types was $5.06 per 100g mainly due to some of the bulk options available and $8.51 for less than 500g. Other suppliers reviewed which were mostly online had an average of $6.20 per 100g and $10.75 for less than 500g.

Across the aforementioned protein types and cost per 100g for a 1kg sized container, from the sample of proteins we reviewed the following were the average prices:

Pea: $3.03
Whey concentrate: $3.67
Casein: $4.60
Whey isolate: $5.94
Plant (Hemp, soy etc.): $6.28

These were all RRP. and is only a guideline based on the facts available at the time. Future updates will be noted.

Protein Flavours

Of the 66 different proteins options we researched, we found 17 different flavours ranging from vanilla and chocolate through to exotics like apple & mango.

Of all the flavours we found and no doubt there are even more obscure ones out there, 72% were either vanilla or chocolate with a close split between the two, and 14% were unflavoured or natural.

Old Bull Protein

Old Bull protein only comes in Vanilla. Why? Because its popular, feels healthier than chocolate and in our view is more versatile in smoothies.

We only sell a 1kg pack size. Why? Because this is the optimal size for an average old bull daily use requirements. 

Old Bull protein only comes in Isolate. Why? Because it has higher protein %, is a complete protein with all the amino acids and it absorbs the fastest around the price point before you start getting into elite and specialist requirements.

Easy, so if you are buying protein, we have just saved you three decisions. Size, type and flavour. While we do provide a 30g scoop in each 1kg pack, you will  still need to be clear on how much protein your body needs daily.

How much protein do I need?

 Benefits of Protein


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