Protein is an essential ingredient to good health and fitness. If you want to look leaner and become stronger, there must be a sufficient supply of protein in your diet. Proteins are essential to the functioning of your body’s cells. Some proteins provide structure for the body’s cells while others have a metabolic function that aids in improving each cell’s overall function from day to day.

Not all protein sources are created equal, which begs the question, which type of protein is best for me? Factors such as the availability of Essential Amino Acids (EAA) and the digestibility of the protein both play a role in determining the best type of protein.

Dairy, eggs, and soy tied for the highest score on the PDCAAS (Protein Corrected Amino Score) followed by meat, seafood, and nuts. Dairy’s muscle-building qualities come from whey protein and casein. Eggs contain approximately seven grams of protein for just eighty calories. Soy scores a perfect 1.0 on the PDCAAS scale; however, some research suggests it should be consumed in moderation.[1]

The Journal of Nutrition has featured studies concerning PDCAAS. These studies reference the method by which PDCAAS are evaluated and the subsequent results.[2] Dairy remains the leader and highest scorer when PDCAAS are being considered.

Both dairy and eggs are an excellent and inexpensive choice. High-quality whey and casein protein powders tend to be expensive, so what better way to receive those crucial whey proteins and casein than to drink milk?[3]

In addition to assisting in muscle gain, protein is also a wonderful way to boost energy throughout the day. Dairy is a complete source of protein that should be incorporated into daily consumption. Good quality dairy is affordable and easy to find, making it an essential part of a healthy diet.

[1] Laura Newcomer, “Got Milk? The 9 Best Protein Sources to Build Muscle,” The Daily Burn, (June 2016), http://dailyburn.com/life/health/best-protein-sources-build-muscle

[2] Gertjan Schaafsma, “The Protein Digestibility- Corrected Amino Acid Score.” The Journal of Nutrition, Vol. 130, no. 7, (July 1, 2000), http://jn.nutrition.org/content/130/7/1865S.full.

[3] Laura Newcomer, “Got Milk? The 9 Best Protein Sources to Build Muscle,” The Daily Burn, (June 2016), http://dailyburn.com/life/health/best-protein-sources-build-muscle/.