What is the best protein powder with real sugar?

drink wholesome is the best protein powder with real sugar. It is sweetened with maple sugar. Order samples to see if our real sugar protein powder is right for you. 

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drink wholesome is the best protein powder with real sugar.

Written by Jack Schrupp & endorsed by Baylee Reller, RDN

What is the deal with sugar? 

With so many fad diets, it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction, especially when it comes to sugar. First of all, sugar is not necessarily bad for you. The naturally occurring sugars in fruits and vegetables, for example, are part of a healthy diet. Added sugars, on the other hand, are a different story.

In 2016, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) revised the Nutrition Facts label to include both “Total Sugars” and “Added Sugars.” Added sugars are sugars introduced to the food during processing. Total Sugars refers to added sugars as well as naturally occurring sugars like those in fruits. 

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that no more than 10 percent of your daily caloric intake come from Added Sugars. This is because eating too many Added Sugars can raise your risk for chronic disease such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Given that most protein powders are made for health-conscious consumers, they tend to contain little if any Added Sugar.

What are sugar substitutes?

Instead of using sugar, most protein powder companies use sugar substitutes like sucralose, erythritol, and stevia. Sugar substitutes, or non-nutritive sweeteners, fall into one of three categories: artificial sweeteners, sugar alcohols, and natural sweeteners. 

Sucralose and acesulfame potassium are examples of artificial sweeteners. Erythritol and xylitol are examples of sugar alcohols. Stevia and monk fruit are examples of natural sweeteners. The one thing all sugar substitutes have in common is that they are super sweet and sugar-free. A pinch of artificial sweetener, for example, can be used to achieve the same amount of sweetness as several tablespoons of sugar. This allows food manufacturers to cut down on both calories and sugar.

Why should you avoid most sugar substitutes?

Here are 5 reasons to avoid most sugar substitutes:

1. Artificial sweeteners can increase the risk of glucose intolerance, which is a precursor for pre-diabetes and diabetes.

2. Sugar alcohols have been linked to an increased risk for heart attacks and stroke.

3. Both artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols have been shown to disrupt the composition and function of the gut microbiome – the collection of microorganisms living in your gut. An unhealthy gut microbiome is a leading driver of inflammation and linked to the onset and development of many chronic diseases. It can also cause digestive issues like bloating, diarrhea, and stomach pain.

4. Some natural sweeteners like stevia are extracted from plants using chemicals like ethanol and methyl alcohol. This, one could argue, makes them barely more natural than the artificial sweeteners they seek to replace.

5. Artificial sweeteners, sugar alcohols, and stevia activate bitter taste receptors, giving them an unpleasant aftertaste.

The only sugar substitute we feel comfortable using is monk fruit sweetener. Monk fruit, also known as luo han guo, is a melon-like fruit native to Southeast Asia. Its intense sweetness comes from non-caloric compounds called mogrosides.

Of all the sugar substitutes, monk fruit sweetener is by far the most natural. It is made by removing the seeds and skin, crushing the fruit, and collecting the juice, which is dried into a fine powder. Moreover, unlike other substitutes, it does not have a bitter aftertaste. 

Monk fruit sweetener is relatively new to the market, so we do not have a lot of information about how it affects chronic conditions like obesity and diabetes. It is worth noting, however, that monk fruit sweetener has been used in Asian cuisine for hundreds of years without any known side effects, even when consumed in large quantities. Additionally, small randomized trials have shown that monk fruit sweetener does not negatively impact blood sugar or insulin levels.

Why should you use maple sugar? 

If you are looking for a protein powder without artificial sweeteners, sugar alcohols, stevia, or even monk fruit, you have come to the right place. We are one of only a few protein powder companies to make protein powder with real sugar. Yes, we do use monk fruit in some of our protein powders, but we also make vanilla and chocolate protein powders with maple sugar.

Maple sugar comes from the sap of sugar maple trees. It is one of the most natural (least processed) sugars, and has a number of health benefits. For instance, maple sugar has a lower glycemic index than refined sugar, which means it has a smaller impact on blood sugar levels. Moreover, unlike refined sugar, maple sugar has not been stripped of its nutrients. It therefore contains minerals and antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation.

Maple sugar is also delicious. It has a rich maple flavor and aroma just like maple syrup, with a sweet aftertaste.

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

What is the best real sugar protein powder?

We make the best protein powder made with real sugar using a short list of simple ingredients, including Vermont maple sugar. You will not find a more natural, or naturally-sweetened protein powder. Order samples to taste the difference.



“Finally a protein powder made with real sugar. This stuff is excellent. I mean literally the best protein powder I’ve ever had. The taste is good and I feel good after drinking it too. I’ve never had a protein powder that didn’t make me bloat before. 🤜 🤛” – Ron

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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.