By Sean Nalewanyj

Beef has been a staple in bodybuilder's diets for decades.

It's packed with valuable muscle building nutrition coming from high quality protein, creatine, branched-chain amino acids, b-vitamins and zinc.

In fact, it might just be the best whole food source of protein there is.

Because of the overall quality of beef as a bodybuilding protein source, supplement companies are now offering "beef protein isolate" in powdered form.

The idea here is to give you all the muscle building effectiveness of regular beef but in the convenient form of a protein shake.

But is beef protein isolate a good investment? How does it compare to regular whey protein?

Well, if beef protein isolate was actually lean meat in powdered form, then I'd say go for it.

Unfortunately, most people using these beef protein powders have no idea what they're actually made from.

Ever heard of "gelatin"?

It's essentially the "throw away" parts of the cow... their joints, ligaments, hide, ears etc. (Basically all the parts you end up with after the butcher is finished)

It might sound surprising, but gelatin is actually the primary ingredient found in all of the popular beef protein powders on the market.

They take the gelatin... turn it into a powdered form... then fortify the powder with added creatine and BCAA's to make it seem like you're getting the real thing.

I'm not saying that this is a health-risk or that it's going to harm you, but the overall protein quality is nowhere near that of what you'd get from a piece of sirloin steak.

If consumed in limited amounts, gelatin is certainly not going to negatively affect your results... but why bother?

For around the same price you can buy a pure whey protein powder, which is the highest quality source of protein you can possibly put into your body.

Whey has the highest absorption rate and best amino acid profile of ANY protein source out there, and is significantly higher quality than gelatin.

That's pretty much all there is to it.

If you want a lower quality protein powder made from cow hoofs and ears, go ahead and grab a tub of beef protein isolate...

If you want a pure source of the highest quality muscle building protein available, and for the same price, stick with whey. (If you're allergic to whey, egg or casein would be your next best choices)

- Sean

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