Sick of protein farts?
Written by Jack Schrupp and reviewed by Ella McGonagle, M.S. Nutrition
Sick of protein farts? Switch to drink wholesome. It is additive-free, dairy-free, and made with real foods, not protein isolates – 99% of supplements fail to meet at least one of these criteria. This makes it perfect for people with gut issues and sensitive stomachs, as well as for people just looking to boost their protein intake without the processing and added junk. Order samples to see if our protein powder is right for you.
“If you have a sensitive gut, you need simple ingredients.”
-Brittany Carpenter, MS, RDN/LDN
Sick of protein farts? Switch to drink wholesome.
What are farts?
Everyone farts. The average person farts 5-15 times a day and, believe it or not, 99% of farts are odorless. Farting, or flatulence, is caused by bacteria in the large intestine. These bacteria release gas when they break down foods (mainly dietary fiber and sugars) that were not digested in the small intestine. Farts are mostly made of odorless gasses like oxygen and methane, but can contain small amounts of gasses like hydrogen sulfide, which give them an unpleasant odor.
What are protein farts?
Protein farts are smelly farts caused by protein supplements, not dietary protein. In other words, the type and amount of protein you consume does not matter. What matters are the other ingredients in your protein supplement.
Just to reiterate, protein farting is a misnomer. Protein farts are actually caused by additives like emulsifiers, stabilizers, thickeners, artificial sweeteners, and flavors. Ingredients like these look nothing like real food, so your gut does not know what to do with them. They therefore sit in your digestive tract for longer than food should, which causes one of two things to happen: either your intestines absorb extra water, resulting in diarrhea, or the partially digested food feeds your gut bacteria, which release gas. Extra gas is what causes bloating and flatulence.
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
Dairy-based proteins like whey and casein can also make you fart. This is especially true if you have lactose intolerance. Individuals with lactose intolerance cannot fully digest lactose, the sugar in dairy. Partially digested lactose feeds your hungry gut bacteria, which release gas as they eat. Bacteria are the reason champagne has bubbles, and why you fart after drinking protein shakes.
Does protein make your farts smell?
This may come as a surprise, but there is no evidence that protein itself causes you to fart, or that certain types of protein make your farts smell bad.
How to get rid of protein farts?
In summary, food additives and dairy-based proteins feed the bacteria living in your gut, which produce gas and make you fart. To avoid protein farting, look for a protein supplement made with a short list of simple ingredients, the shorter and the simpler the better. The more your supplement looks like real food, the easier it will be to digest, and the less likely it will be to make you fart.
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.
drink wholesome is made with real foods.
Another reason why our protein powder does not cause protein farts is that we do not use protein isolates. The majority of protein powders, on the other hand, use either one or both of these protein sources, which are essentially foods stripped of everything but the protein content. Instead of being listed as “peas” or “whey,” concentrates and isolates appear on the ingredient list as “pea protein” or “whey protein.”
Producing protein concentrates and isolates involves rigorous mechanical and chemical procedures. In certain cases, chemical solvents like hexane are used to extract the protein from its natural source. What ultimately becomes protein powder thus looks nothing like real food.
Your digestive system has evolved to handle minimally-processed or unprocessed real foods, not artificial imitations. Consuming anything other than real food can, therefore, result in negative side effects. While the long-term consequences of consuming processed ingredients like protein isolates are still being studied, emerging research indicates that they can disrupt the balance of the gut microbiome – the collection of microorganisms that help you digest food.
In addition to its role in digestion, the gut acts as a protective barrier against harmful pathogens, plays a vital part in educating the immune system, and influences various physiological processes. Consequently, disturbances to the delicate equilibrium of the gut microbiome have been linked to the development of several chronic illnesses. Considering this connection, I strongly discourage the consumption of protein powders made with protein concentrates and isolates.
Instead of using protein concentrates or isolates, we make protein powder with egg whites and almonds. Egg whites are just pasteurized and dried, while almonds are roasted, pressed to reduce oil content, and ground. These minimally-processed ingredients result in a protein powder that is easily digestible and promotes gut health, providing a wholesome alternative to protein concentrates and isolates.
For individuals without allergies or sensitivities to eggs, egg white protein emerges as an outstanding choice for improving gut health. With its low fiber content and minimal FODMAPs, egg whites are gentle on the digestive system. Furthermore, they boast the highest protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS) among all whole foods. Our customers consistently give positive feedback, reporting fewer digestive issues when consuming our egg white protein powder compared to other protein sources.
For those who cannot consume eggs, our vegan almond protein powder serves as an excellent substitute. Almonds, unlike protein concentrates or isolates, are rich in healthy fats, fiber, and essential nutrients such as calcium and vitamin E. We prioritize almonds over other minimally-processed plant protein sources due to their remarkable gut-friendly properties. Research suggests that almonds exhibit prebiotic characteristics, nurturing the diversity and composition of the gut microbiome, ultimately promoting better gut health.
In conclusion, our protein powders undergo minimal processing to prioritize the well-being of your gut.
“I like this new flavor and for a vegan protein powder it’s exceptional. Chocolately and not too sweet. No bloating or gas either. I will be back for more. Thank you!!” – Davis
Sick of protein farting? Switch to drink wholesome.