The supplements are only expensive because the big name companies mark the product up immensely to pay for advertising, packaging, promotions, etc.
If you buy from a wholesaler or get the raw product for Ebay, the price is dramatically cheaper.
I agree that diet is #1 – it’s the foundation for health and training gains in strength and stamina.
And I agree that timing is essential for effectiveness – especially right before and after training when nutrients and calories are especially needed.
The problem is that meat is inordinately expensive and most people don’t have the appetite to choke down over 1lb of meat per day.
Granted Protein shakes are a substitution for solid protein sources – but that’s all that these shakes are as well, Food.
Whey protein is just the separated protein from milk – I’ve tried other protein powder sources and found whey to be the most digestive friendly.
Hydrolyzed whey Isolate – is just predigested whey that’s been separated from the lactose content.
If one is worried about chemicals or additives – go with slow filtered cold processed whey, it’s the least chemically treated, but is a bit more expensive
Or go with whey from the milk of free-range grass-fed cows – also more expensive.
It’s just food that is a little more user friendly.