One question that gets asked a lot (nearly every day) by pre-ops and new post-ops alike is “what is the best protein shake?”. The real answer is frustrating to some people but, here it is. The very best protein is the protein you can tolerate.

Some people love a certain protein powder, someone else will absolutely hate that brand. Some love certain premade drinks, others gag when they try to drink that same brand. When this question gets asked, the responses are always as varied as the brands of protein powders out there.

My suggestion to anybody having WLS is to get samples and try out varying protein powders before spending a lot of money on big tubs of the stuff. Some of the places you can get samples (most of them aren’t free, unfortunately) are as follows:

  1. Vitalady This site has a variety of different brands. Sometimes you can find better prices on the tubs elsewhere, but this is an excellent place to get samples.
  2. About Time
  3. Click
  4. Bariatric Advantage (these aren’t samples exactly but look under meal replacements for individual packets of their protein)
  5. Chike (these are free, but they do want you to pay a flat rate shipping fee.)

There are more websites out there, but these are just off the top of my head. Stores like GNC and Vitamin Shoppe also sell some variety packs of individual packets. I also believe GNC and Vitamin Shoppe both will allow you to return tubs of opened protein you purchased there if it turns out you do not like it.

If you are looking for a RTD (ready to drink) protein, Vitamin Shoppe also sells singles if you want to give those a try. I’ve also heard really good reviews about the Premier Protein RTD sold at Costco. Unfortunately, I don’t think you can buy just one of the Premier to try it but I have heard Costco will take it back if you have the receipt and do not like it.

But what do I do if I can’t find a protein powder I like?

There are ways to make protein shakes that don’t involve protein powder. Take 1/2 cup of Greek Yogurt and 1/2 cup milk (I use Hood Calorie Countdown because it’s lower in carbs) and then add different flavors to it in a blender (shaker cups aren’t great for this). Use whatever amounts you want but I generally do 1 for 1. For flavors, you could use sugar free Jello powder in various flavors, as well as sugar free Jello pudding flavors. You could buy some sugar free syrups such as Torani or Davinci and use those to flavor up the drink. Extracts are good to use too. I also use these things to jazz up my protein powder drinks.


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