Does protein powder have caffeine?

Does protein powder have caffeine? Some protein powders contain caffeine, others do not. Keep reading to learn more.

pre workout vs protein powder
protein powder for beginners

Some protein powders contain caffeine.

What is caffeine?

Does protein powder contain caffeine? 

Why drink wholesome? 

What is caffeine?


Caffeine is a natural stimulant found in the seeds, leaves, and fruits of certain plants like tea, coffee, and cacao. Caffeine is also produced synthetically and added to various beverages, foods, and medications. It is well-known for its stimulating effects on the central nervous system, which can help to increase alertness, reduce fatigue, and improve concentration. In addition to its stimulant properties, caffeine can have other effects on the body, such as increasing metabolism. 

Caffeine certainly has its perks, but it is also easy to consume too much. If you are drinking more than 4 cups of caffeinated coffee a day (or the equivalent), you may want to consider cutting back. Too much caffeine can cause side effects like anxiety, insomnia, and nausea. It is important to note that the effects of caffeine can vary from person to person, and some individuals may be more sensitive to its effects than others. It is generally recommended to consume caffeine in moderation and be mindful of its potential impact on sleep, hydration, and overall health.

Does protein powder contain caffeine?


Foods, beverages, and dietary supplements containing added caffeine must list “caffeine” as an ingredient on the Supplement/Nutrition Facts label. They are not required to list the amount of caffeine, however, so there is often no way of knowing how much caffeine you are getting. 

Although some protein powders contain added caffeine, most do not. A few protein powders are naturally caffeinated. Our mocha protein powder, for example, contains about 10 milligrams (mg) of caffeine per serving. Most of it comes from spray-dried coffee, which is added for flavor, not for its stimulating effects.

Other protein powders are formulated with caffeine-rich ingredients, such as green tea extract. These types of protein powders are often marketed as metabolism-boosting or thermogenic products. If you are looking for a protein powder without caffeine, check the ingredients list, or choose an unflavored protein powder to avoid any potential caffeine content.

Unless a protein powder contains a naturally caffeinated ingredient like coffee, cocoa, or green tea, it is probably caffeine-free. Our vanilla protein powder, for instance, is made with egg whites, coconut, vanilla, and monk fruit. None of these ingredients contain caffeine, so the protein powder itself is also caffeine-free.  

At the end of the day, there are lots of caffeine-free protein powders, and any of them can help you boost your protein intake. Not all caffeine-free protein powders are good for you, however, and the only way to know is by reading the ingredient list. Keep reading to learn more. 

Why drink wholesome


drink wholesome is additive-free.

One of the reasons why we make the best protein powder is that we do not use food additives. Most protein powders, on the other hand, are full of food additives.

Food additives may improve characteristics like taste, texture, and shelf stability, but they can also cause uncomfortable side effects and long-term gut damage. Basically, because they look nothing like real food, food additives are hard to digest. They therefore sit in your gut for longer than food should, which gives your gut bacteria more time to eat. As they eat, these bacteria produce gas, causing bloating and stomach pain.

Gas also slows colonic transit (the amount of time it takes food to travel through the colon), which can lead to constipation. Over time, food additives can add up (especially if you drink a protein shake every day), and disrupt regulatory pathways in the intestine. Eventually, this can lead to the development of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and systemic inflammatory disorders.

vegan vanilla protein powder serving suggestion
vanilla protein powder lifestyle image 1

When buying protein powder, one additive to avoid in particular is artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners are among the most harmful food additives in the long term as they alter the composition of your gut microbiota. This can lead to serious, chronic GI problems, widespread inflammation, and permanent damage to the gut microbiome. 

Some sweeteners, especially sugar alcohols like xylitol, are poorly absorbed by the gut, meaning they feed your hungry gut bacteria. They can also cause diarrhea because they draw water into your intestines. Now you may finally have something to blame for those post-protein shake trips to the bathroom!

Here is a list of the most common food additives in protein powder:

acacia gum, acesulfame potassium, artificial flavors, aspartame, carrageenan, cellulose gum, dextrin, dextrose, erythritol, gellan gum, guar gum, gum arabic, inulin, locust bean gum, “natural” flavors, maltodextrin, rice syrup solids, soy lecithin, silica, sucralose, sunflower lecithin, xanthan gum, xylitol

When it comes to identifying food additives, go with your gut. 😉 As a rule of thumb, additives are ingredients that you cannot pronounce. Food additives are not the only thing to avoid when buying protein powder, however. There are several other ingredients that can upset your stomach.

the alternative:

Protein Matrix Comprised of (Whey Protein Concentrate,  Whey Protein Isolate, Calcium Caseinate, Micellar Casein, Milk Protein Isolate, Egg Albumen, Glutamine Peptides), Polydextrose, Sunflower Creamer (Sunflower Oil, Corn Syrup Solids,  Sodium Caseinate, Mono- and Diglycerides, Dipotassium Phosphate, Tricalcium Phosphate, Soy Lecithin, Tocopherols), Natural and Artificial Flavor, MCT Powder (Medium Chain Triglycerides, Nonfat Dry Milk, Disodium Phosphate, Silicon Dioxide), Lecithin, Cellulose Gum, Salt, Yellow 5, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Papain, Bromelain.

*This is the actual ingredient list of one of the best-selling protein powders in the United States.

drink wholesome is dairy-free.

Another reason why we make the best protein powder is that we do not use dairy-based proteins. Many protein powders are made with whey and casein, which are byproducts of cheese and yogurt production, and known to cause digestive issues. This is especially true for people with lactose intolerance and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

drink wholesome is made with real foods.

A final reason why we make the best protein powder is that we do not use protein isolates. Most protein powders, on the contrary, are made with protein concentrates and/or isolates, foods stripped of everything but the protein. They appear on the ingredient list as “pea protein” and “whey protein” as opposed to “peas” and “whey.”

I will not go into the details, but protein concentrates and isolates undergo heavy mechanical and chemical processing before becoming protein powder. Sometimes, manufacturers use chemical solvents like hexane to isolate (separate) the protein from the food. This means that what you end up putting into your body looks nothing like real food.

If you think about it, your gut was designed to digest naturally occurring foods, not laboratory formulated imitations, so if you feed it anything but real food, it might get upset. The long term implications of eating processed foods like protein isolates are still not well understood, but more and more research is finding that it can alter the composition of your gut microbiota, and lead to permanent damage to your gut microbiome.

Your gut does more than just help you to digest food; it protects against pathogens, educates your immune system, and affects directly or indirectly most of your physiologic functions. Disruptions to the gut microbiome have therefore been linked to the development of many chronic diseases. It follows that it is in your best interest to avoid protein powders made with protein concentrates and isolates. 

vegan chocolate protein powder lifestyle image 1
chocolate protein powder 14 servings serving suggestion

Instead of using protein concentrates or isolates, we make the best protein powder with whole foods like egg whites and almonds. Egg whites are simply pasteurized and dried before becoming protein powder. Almonds are just roasted, pressed to remove some of the oil, and ground. Whole foods like these are an easy to digest, gut-friendly alternative to protein concentrates and isolates.

Whole foods contain a variety of enzymes and other digestive aids that help to break down the food, making it easier for the body to absorb the nutrients. Protein isolates and concentrates, on the other hand, have been stripped of these digestive aids, making them harder for the body to digest and absorb. Moreover, minimally-processed plant-based foods like almonds are rich in fiber, which helps promote healthy digestion and regular bowel movements.

Unless you have a sensitivity or allergy to eggs, egg white protein is the best protein for your gut. Egg whites are low in fiber, low-FODMAP, naturally alkaline, and have the highest protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS) of any whole food. Our customers have experienced fewer digestive issues with egg white protein powder than with any other type of protein powder.

If you cannot eat eggs, try our vegan almond protein powder. We prefer almonds to other plant protein sources because they are more gut-friendly. Research suggests that almonds possess prebiotic properties that can improve the diversity and composition of the gut microbiome.

drink wholesome is the best protein powder.

CHOCOLATE PROTEIN POWDERS

vegan chocolate protein powder

(41) $39.99 - or subscribe and save up to 15%

PROTEIN POWDER SAMPLES

3 protein powder samples

$19.99

This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. drink wholesome is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Close