Kevin Lawrence is a fitness and nutrition expert and the founder and CEO of Power Crunch, a line of “smart” protein products. Kevin is a former college football player, former IFBB World Bodybuilding Champion, and renowned speaker and writer who is knowledgeable in exercise physiology and applied nutrition.
In this episode, Kevin touches on various types of proteins from whey to plant-based, what our diets should look like, the nitty gritty on stevia, the benefits of high DH proteins over whole proteins, and MUCH more. Enjoy!
“Get quality animal protein, eat colors, don’t eat grains, don’t eat any food you can’t eat without processing.” — Kevin Lawrence
Developing a passion for nutrition
Kevin Lawrence realized his passion for nutrition at the age of 13 when he read Adelle Davis’ book Let’s Eat Right to Keep Fit. Coming from a low-income family with five children, nutrition was not prioritized and was often neglected. Often sick and malnourished as a child, Lawrence pursued a career in sports and nutritional supplements.
Kevin’s career really gained steam when his newborn son was unable to nurse and was immediately put on formula. After months of health complications, Lawrence took it upon himself to produce his own infant formula based with a foundation of hydrolyzed proteins, which cured his sons ailments in a matter of days.
- Modern day stevia vs. old stevia — It is becoming more apparent that not all stevia is created equal. The stevia leaf that humans consumed 1,000 years ago is not the same as the products we consume today. Instead of using the leaf, companies are extracting different compounds in order to develop a range in flavor profile. The question begins to arise that even though there is no insulin response to stevia, is the “sweetner profile” tricking our brains into triggering a metabolic response?
- There are very few quality baby formulas available on the market — According to Kevin Lawrence, the ideal formula will use hydrolyzed proteins, which are easier on the gut and digestion. Since newborns have virtually no gut microbiome at birth and rely on nursing to establish a microbiome, using an easily digestible protein source is essential.
- Hydrolyzed vs other proteins — The process of hydrolysis essentially chops a large molecule into smaller peptides. Di/Tri amino acid (2–3) peptides are the smallest protein peptides. Their small structure makes them ideal for just before and just after a workout, or for those who have digestive issues.
- Hydrolyzed proteins are the easiest to digest and also get into the bloodstream the quickest — Studies show hydrolyzed proteins getting into the bloodstream in as little as 15 minutes, whereas whey isolate shows up in the bloodstream after 2–3 hours, and casein within 4–6 hours. Since casein is so slow to digest, it is ideal before bed, providing a slow fuel source during the night.
- Supplementing a hydrolyzed protein has some advantages over eating actual meat — When eating an 8oz steak, the body is still digesting protein 14–16 hours later, because thick connective tissue that slows digestion. This causes a lot of damage to the lining of the gut. A significant amount of protein is required to repair this damage. Hydrolysates, allow for a high volume of protein, without the damage.
- We are designed to eat animal protein. Plant proteins are incomplete and can be very hard on the human gut. Some of the main health issues facing the western world are due to an excess in soy, corn, and grains.
- If you want to start a protein bar company get ready to face some serious competition — Although the market has picked up again and grown since 2010, there are still quite a few players. In the past 12 months the bar market has slowed down, so the main advantage one must capitalize on is having a unique offering. Since the space is not growing, new companies have to compete within it. They must be unique.
“If it’s not something I’m eating, I’m not going to sell it.” — Kevin Lawrence