When you’re spending your hard earned money on something as important as protein powder, you want to know for sure that you’re getting your money’s worth. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t like it when I find out a product is skimping on the real ingredients that I want in favor of cheap fillers so they can make more profit off of me than they deserve to. Fillers and junk that shouldn’t be in my protein powder makes me cranky.

So, I decided to put together a list of things that you just shouldn’t be finding in the protein powder that you buy, then I’ll give you a list of legit protein powders that don’t skimp on the good stuff. Make no mistake, though: the legit stuff is more expensive on the label, but you’re still paying a pretty decent price considering the cheaper stuff was scamming you in the first place.

  • Saccharin – crosses placenta and may remain in fetal tissue
  • Other artificial sweeteners – can cause negative side effects like headaches, migraines, depression, etc
  • Caffeine – this is okay, depending on what you’re using your protein powder for
  • Creatine- this is okay, depending on what you’re using your protein powder for
  • Soy protein – yucky GMO, pesticide-laden filler, can cause thyroid problems
  • Coconut flour – gas/bloating
  • Psyllium – gas/bloating
  • carrageenan – cheap filler
  • Corn syrup solids – cheap filler
  • Dextrin/glucose – contributes to fat storage
  • Skim milk powders/milk solids – cheap filler, additional lactose causes gas
  • Vegetable oils
  • Thickeners/gums – bloating/gas
  • Anything you can’t easily pronounce

Try to stick to protein powders that list as many whole, recognizable ingredients as possible. Organic and non-GMO is best here.

Here are some products that fit that bill as closely as possible. Almost any protein powder you find will have something disagreeable in it; this is about getting as close to zero as possible.

Swhey’s Halo protein powder is made of organic, non-gmo ingredients and includes only things that you can pronounce, like any good food product should.

BN Labs Vegan Protein is pretty additive free, except for some guar gum.

Bone Broth by BeLive is another great natural protein powder that is mostly additive free. It’s non-gmo, with no dairy, artificial preservatives, no soy, and no nuts with 22g of protein per serving.