Inside: If protein or meal replacement shakes have ever made you sick, nauseated, etc., here are some possible reasons and solutions to help you enjoy shakes again.
I’d NEVER heard of anyone getting sick from a protein/meal replacement shake, until I received a very unnerving phone call from a friend about her favorite shake.
Before that phone call, she would constantly bug me to switch from the shakes I drank for YEARS, over to hers. I’m glad I didn’t take her advice.
It was early Sunday morning that she called me and, with panic in her voice, began grilling me about the very shakes she tried convincing me to give up!
“What’s in them? How much are they? What’s the website?”
Huh?? I was SO confused. Why was she suddenly inquiring about my shakes?
Her Response Made My Jaw Drop
Turns out, she and her daughter were having some “mysterious” stomach aches that, at times, bowled them over in pain.
The culprit? Those ‘uber-delicious‘ shakes of hers.
And if that wasn’t bad enough, she shared story after terrible story of other people (who drank the same shakes) suffering with stomach aches and much worse:
- Nausea & vomiting
- Newly-developed thyroid issues
- Gallbladder removal
We got off the phone and I immediately “put my detective hat on” and began investigating. What I discovered was that…
A LOT of folks get sick drinking protein shakes.
Possible Reasons Your Shake Is Making You Sick
While you may not have symptoms or issues as severe as those my friend told me about – vomiting, or even feeling as though you have to, is no fun either.
So in order to (hopefully) get to the bottom of this protein shake dilemma, here are a few possibilities to consider:
Possible Reason #1 – Allergies
Take a look at the ingredients in your protein shake. Recognize anything that you have allergies/sensitivities to such as gluten or certain sweeteners?
A lot of shakes have a crap-ton of “stuff” in them that isn’t necessarily good for you.
So, look for a shake where you can pronounce at least most of the ingredients.
Possible Reason #2 – Lactose Intolerance
Anytime I’ve EVER drank a protein or meal replacement powder with whey in it, it made me feel weird. I can’t really explain the sensation, but whatever it was, I could never drink more than a sip or two.
Others experience gas pains, uncomfortable bloating, and nostril-singeing farts!
So, if you’re lactose intolerant and your shake contains whey, you’ll definitely want to ditch it for something that’s dairy/whey-free.
Another recommendation is to consider trying a shake with whey isolate, as opposed to whey concentrate, because it has little-to-no lactose; so that could be another option.
Possible Reason #3 – Soy
Remember the friend I told you about?
She and many of those she mentioned felt very strongly that soy was the main culprit in their sickness – especially the thyroid and gallbladder issues.
I know, I know… soy has been touted as the “Holy Grail” for health enthusiasts and those who want to lessen or eliminate their meat consumption, right?
Yeah, well you may want to do your homework on it because as with anything else, there are definitely pros and cons to soy. In fact, according to an article on the Dr. Mercola website…
“Dr. Kaayla Daniel, author of The Whole Soy Story, points out thousands of studies linking soy to malnutrition, digestive distress, immune-system breakdown, thyroid dysfunction, cognitive decline, reproductive disorders and infertility—even cancer and heart disease.” Read more…
And to be clear, the more dangerous forms of soy are the ones that are NON-FERMENTED – things such as soy milk, fake meat products, soy-based baby formulas, soy nuts, (non-fermented) tofu, etc.
Fermented soy, however, is actually beneficial to the body and these include things such as miso, soy sauce, tamari (gluten-free soy sauce), tempeh, and fermented soy milks and tofu.
Possible Reason #4 – Not Drinking Enough Water
You must, must, MUST drink plenty of water when you’re using meal replacement & protein shakes!
Typically, meal replacement shakes have either fiber or bulking agents and if you aren’t drinking enough water throughout the day, that can cause a lot of excess bloating & discomfort.
So, drink a glass of water immediately after your shake (and throughout the day) and see if that helps.
But In All Fairness…
The best way to REALLY know for sure whether or not your shakes are the culprit, is to perform a process of elimination.
Stop drinking your shakes for 7-30 days and see how your body reacts to NOT having them.
Then, gradually reintroduce them and take note if the same symptoms arise once again.
If they DO… then you’ll know, without a doubt, that your protein (or meal replacement) shake IS making you sick.
But don’t give up on shakes altogether as there ARE some that WILL NOT make you sick, not one iota!
One such shake (the one my friend grilled me about) actually helps your tummy with probiotics, prebiotics & fiber, energizes you, tastes great, and helps keep your skin nice & tight.
If you’d like to learn more about it, click here!