Whole Food vs. Protein Powder


How much protein do you need from different protein sources to get the same Leucine and EAA (Essential Amino Acids) content found in 25g of Whey Protein? Leucine is the key amino acid which switches the body to drive muscle growth.

Recent studies showed that 25g of whey is the optimal ratio to stimulate muscle growth and repair to the max. So for 25g of whey you will get 2.7g of leucine and 10.9g of EAA's. 
So to ensure you are reaching and utilising your whole foods rather then using supplementation effectively in terms of muscle growth here are a few examples of whole food per grams (g) of protein, that you will need to get the equivalent leucine and EAAs content found in 25g of whey. 


  • Corn; 20g of protein from corn is equivalent to 2.7g of leucine. 35g of corn protein is equivalent to 10.9g of EAA’s.
  • Milk; 30g of milk protein is equivalent to 2.7g of Leucine. 28g of Milk Protein is equivalent to 10.9g of EAA’s.
  • Brown Rice; 38g of protein from brown rice is equivalent to 2.7g of leucine. 39g of rice protein is equivalent to 10.9g of EAA’s. 

So to put some things into perspective, you'll need to consume 9.5 x 100g servings of corn to reach the equivalent for leucine. To reach the equivalents for brown rice you will need to consume 3.5 cups of uncooked brown rice. 
So it is nearly impossible to reach your required leucine and EAA’s levels for muscle growth from whole foods.

That the anti nutrients in plant foods actually decrease the bioavailability of amino acids. Meaning your body can't get them effectively and you'll need to eat a lot more then you are. 

So it is highly advisable that you look at adding an EAA formula product into your daily routine at least one to three times. Following with a protein source of 25g of protein or higher for maximum muscle growth and repair around your training period.