A high quality protein powder should be a staple in every lifter’s supplement regimen. Hundreds of studies have supported its anabolic effects, especially when it’s part of a post-workout shake.  So the question isn’t whether you should take one; it’s what kind should you take.

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And that’s where it gets extremely confusing. In fact, even the researchers continue to argue over it. There are too many variables to make a definitive conclusion: amino acids profiles, digestion rates, how it was processed, etc. Plus, a lot of what we have learned about protein came from the supplement companies.  It’s a mess.

So assuming you’re like me, still a little confused yet leans toward whey isolate versions as the protein of choice, two products immediately come to mind: BSN Syntha6 Isolate and Dymatize Iso-100. So, let’s compare.

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Cost

Dymatize Iso-100 cost per serving: $1.02

BSN Syntha6 Isolate: $1.12

Taste and Ease of Mixing

I’ve personally used vanilla in both products. I mix my shakes with a spoon in a glass of water. Although Syntha6 Isolate has a slightly better taste, both actually taste really good. Both also mix extremely well with just a spoon. No chunks. No settling at the bottom of the cup.

Protein Types

This is the biggest difference between the two, as well as the difference that causes the most controversy. Because Iso-100 is pure whey isolate it’s considered a fast-digesting protein. Syntha6 Isolate contains 2 different types of isolates: whey isolate and milk isolate. Thus, like Iso-100, it releases amino acids quickly into the bloodstream, yet at the same time, slowly via the milk protein isolate. In theory, the prolonged release of amino acids into your bloodstream keeps muscle protein synthesis elevated longer, and the body in a state of anabolism longer.

The Winner

Although many will argue that Syntha6 Isolate will provide superior results due to the fact that it contains quick and slow digesting proteins, I’m not convinced. I’ve seen studies supporting both views.  In all honesty, for 99.99% of us, I don’t think it’s going to make that much of a difference. When a guy fails to reach his goal, it’s not because of the type of protein he chose. It’s because of the quantity of protein he chose to eat per day. In this instance, quantity trumps quality.

However, there is a situation where I’d choose Iso-100 over Syntha6 Isolate: cutting. Syntha6 Isolate has 7 grams of carbohydrates per serving. If a guy is focused on getting as shredded as possible, those 7 grams of carbohydrates will add up. For example, I’m currently experimenting with intermittent fasting and carbohydrate cycling to get down to 5-6% body fat. My protein intake is extremely high right now so I’ve had to rely heavily on protein shakes (5 servings per day). If I would be using Syntha6 Isolate, that’s an extra 35 grams of carbohydrates per day. With Iso-100, that’s only 7 grams of carbohydrates. That makes a big difference when you’re trying to get to a single digit body fat percentage.