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PROTEIN DRINKS - ASSESSMENT OF TASTE, TEXTURE, & BODY ("THICKNESS")



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A lot of people ask for Protein drink advice, and since I've had a really hard time find a Protein Drink that I could tolerate, I've tried a LOT of them. Most of the time, the suggestions we get are "try drink X, I love it" but it can be hard to tell if you will like the same thin because everyone has different tastes.

So, I thought I'd write up my assessments here in case it helps someone else. To help you gauge your tastes to mine,:I do not like sweet drinks like sweet tea, nor do I care for artificial sweeteners (including stevia) or sugar alcohols; I don't mind the mild texture that is a given with Protein powders. So if I say a drink is "extremely sweet," and you love southern sweet tea, you might like it whereas I gagged on it. Also, My tummy seems to be somewhat intolerant of sucralose and/or acesulfame-K, which are in the vast majority of flavored Protein Drinks.

Unless otherwise stated, all the items listed have at least 15 G protein and no more than 6 g carbs per serving. "RTD" means ready-to-drink, I.e. drinks in bottles or cartons. Everything else is a powder.< /p>

All powders are either whey-based or vegan/plant Proteins. All whey items state that they are lactose free. I haven't been able to bring myself to try the new " beef proteins" (basically gelatinized bones & hooves of cows) !

All powders were mixed with 1 cup unsweetened almond milk and ice cubes in a shaker jar/ball. Texture of drinks made from powders would probably be even smoother better using a blender or bullet.

*********************

Ready-to-Drinks:

Premier Protein, RTU, vanilla, from Walmart.

Extremely sweet, with a strong artificial sweet taste from sucralose (Splenda) and aculfesame-K (ace-k). Strong artificial vanilla flavor.

Very smooth texture.

Medium body (I.e. Thickness, as in a milkshake vs juice). Gave me a stomach ache & made me burp and feel a bit bloated for a while after drinking (probably the sweeteners)

Atkins ADVANTAGE, RTU, coffee flavor, from Harris Teeter grocery.

Extremely sweet, although the coffee flavor cuts it a bit during the first few sips. Sweetened w sucralose & ace-k.

Very smooth texture.

Medium-thin body.

Gave me a headache & stomach ache.

GNC TOTAL LEAN 25 shake, RTU, strawberries & cream, from GNC.< /p>

Very sweet, with a artificial sweet taste from sucralose (Splenda) and aculfesame-K (ace-k). Light strawberry flavor.

Very smooth texture.

Medium-thick body. Very filling but it does make me burp and feel a bit bloated for a while after drinking.

NOTE - the powdered version of Total Lean 25 is MUCH higher in carbs.

OH YEAH! NUTRITIONAL shake, RTU, strawberries & cream, from Harris Teeter grocery.

Very sweet, with a artificial sweet taste from sucralose (Splenda) and aculfesame-K (ace-k). Bright, full-bodied strawberry flavor.

Very smooth texture.

Thick body. Very filling but it does make me burp and feel a bit bloated for a while after drinking.

This brand has recently started being carried in Harris Teeter grocery stores. Haven't seen it anywhere else.

MUSCLE MILK, RTD, chocolate, from Walmart & Harris Teeter grocery.

Very sweet, with a more natural sweet taste. Sweetened with fructose & sucralose.

Very smooth texture.

Thick body. Very filling but it does make me burp and feel a bit bloated for a while after drinking.

Powders:

unjury, chocolate, from BariatricAdvantage.com

Very sweet, artificial sweetened flavor. Sweetened w sucralose $ ace-k.

Very smooth texture, especially for a powder.

Thin body.

I found this not to be filling at all.

100% whey isolates. Like all whey Proteins on this list, claims to be lactose free.

NOW SPORTS PEA PROTEIN, unflavored, from GNC (vegan).

Unsweetened. Tastes a little like dirt. Might be good in Soups, or blended with fruit post-op, but would taste odd with sweeter drinks.

Standard powdered protein texture (sort of chalky but not gritty) .

Medium body.

100% pea protein from yellow split peas.

PERFORMANCE AMP WHEYBOLIC EXTREME ORIGINAL, unflavored, from GNC.

Unsweetened. Mild whey flavor, would be fine with anything.

Standard powdered protein texture (sort of chalky but not gritty) .

Medium body.

Whey isolates and whey hydrosylates. Like all whey proteins on this list, claims to be lactose free.

MUSCLE MILK NATURALS, chocolate, from GNC. *my favorite!*

Perfect, mildly sweet, with no artificial sweetener flavor. Moderately chocolatey flavor. Sweeteners are fructose, stevia, & Monk Fruit. Least sweet of all items reviewed.

Standard powdered protein texture (sort of chalky but not gritty) .

Medium-thick body. Very filling.

NOTE - this has 10 g carbs & 26 G protein per serving. It's more than the 6 carbs per serving my nut wants but less than the 11 g she said was the absolute max. To reduce carbs/protein ratio and keep the flavor, I sometimes mix it with protein-enriched almond milk and Water. Unlike Muscle Milk RTD, this does not make me bloated or gassy, so I think it's the sucralose in the RTU that bothers me, not the Muscle Milk itself).

Mixture of milk-derived proteins, including whey isolates. Like all whey proteins on this list, claims to be lactose free.

JAY ROBB WHEY PROTEIN, chocolate, from GNC. *my 2nd favorite!*

Sweet, without artificial sweetener flavor. Lovely milk-chocolate flavor. Sweetener is stevia but this lacks the strong bitter aftertaste that many stevia-sweetened products have. Only 1 carb per serving.

Smooth texture, especially for a powder. Nearly as smooth as Unjury (but more filling).

Medium-thin body.

100% whey isolates. Like all whey proteins on this list, claims to be lactose free.

VEGA ONE, chocolate, from GNC (vegan).

Extremely-sweet, artificial sweetened flavor.

Slight gritty/grainy texture.

Thin body.

GARDEN OF LIFE ORGANIC PLANT PROTEIN, chocolate, from health food store (vegan).

Extremely sweet, artificial sweetened flavor.

Slight gritty/grainy texture.

Thin body.

GARDEN OF LIFE RAW PROTEIN, chocolate, from GNC (vegan).

VERY sweet w slightly bitter aftertaste (sweetener is stevia).

Slight gritty/grainy texture.

Thin body.

RAW FIT, coffee flavor, from health food store (vegan).

Sweet but missy taste, w slightly bitter aftertaste (sweetener is stevia).

Extremely gritty texture. Tastes like you are eating ground up leaves & sticks.

Thin body.

Edited by talkingmountain

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Thank you for taking the time to share all of this information with newbies! I appreciate it very, very much.

Right now (and an important factor to share with others who will read this post)--is for EVERYONE to take the time to investiage the quality of their selected protein...taste isn't (shouldn't be) "all we're after"...Whey Protein ISOLATES are different from Whey Protein Concentrates...(the majority of sources readily admit that ISOLATES ar, indeed, the better choice for what we are all after)....So, reviews aside, don't skimp on quality.

Just wanted to add that footnote to the fabulous information given to us by the original poster.

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..So, reviews aside, don't skimp on quality.

Good observation Karen! When I get a chance to, I will go back and edit the listt to add what type(s) of Proteins are in each product.

Does anyone know if there is a way to attach an excel or google spreadsheet, or a pdf, to a post? I could post my spreadsheet which would make it much easier for others to compare products..

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Ugh l find no resolve...

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