Are Protein Powders Safe?

     Protein powders are one of the most popular dietary supplements out there. Whether it be for recovery or actual supplementation, protein powder can be a quick and relatively cheap source of protein. However, are these supplements safe? In a recent study, heavy metals such as arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and lead have been found in some of the top-selling brands of protein powders. Metals like this have been linked to cancer, brain damage, and various reproductive issues.

            These types of metals are dangerous and can stay in the body for long periods of time. Even protein from a plant based source is dangerous since the plants used to make the powder absorb chemicals from the soil they are grown in. Protein from animal sources are relatively safer as the only way that these chemicals can enter the system is from the animal feed. In fact, protein sources that are made from whey are the best. The more whey the better. Even organic proteins are not as safe.


            As with any product, due diligence from the consumer before buying a protein powder is a necessity. Any supplement on the market is not regulated by the FDA. Independent companies do quality control on certain products. Paying attention to the label of the protein powder is your best source of information. Take note of how much sugar is in your preferred protein powder. Another thing to look out for is the words “proprietary blend.” When a company says this it basically means they can put anything into the protein. This could mean rice flour or any other kind of filler into the protein powder.

            In conclusion, we must pay attention to what we are drinking when it comes to our protein powders. Choosing a reputable brand with a good source of protein can keep us safe and healthy. The original article and a list of the best and worst protein powders is provided in the link below.