ICYMI, the Whole30 is all about eating real foods—there are no frozen meals to microwave and absolutely no sugary protein bars allowed.
Another thing that can be off-limits on the Whole30 diet: protein shakes, since the Whole30 encourages dieters to eat whole foods in their natural form. Still, many dieters rely on the filling power of a protein shake to get them through a busy day and keep them feeling fuller longer.
But that’s just the first hurdle: It’s also no easy feat finding a Whole30-approved protein powder, since most brands contain ingredients on the no-no list, like dairy-based whey proteins, soy proteins, and artificial sweeteners—but it’s not totally impossible.
“For the occasional protein shake on Whole30, look for powders that include protein from collagen, hemp, or eggs,” says registered dietitian Erin Palinski-Wade, author of 2 Day Diabetes Diet. “Avoid powders with artificial sweeteners or added sugars, and flavor your shake or smoothie naturally with fruits, vegetables, and 100 percent fruit juice instead.”
Since it can be hard to sift through all the options out there (and trust me, there are a lot), here are five dietitian-approved, Whole30-friendly protein powders you can buy on Amazon right now.
$16.37 (21% off)
Made from just egg whites, this protein powder is unflavored, which means it can be incorporated into a variety of meals and beverages to boost your protein intake without changing the flavor, says Palinski-Wade.
It’s an especially good fit for Whole30 dieters because you can add it into whole-food recipes instead of just shakes (and stay in line with the diet’s warning against consuming liquid-based meals).
Per serving (¼ cup): 80 cal, 0 g fat, 2 g carbs, 16 g protein.
This brand contains mostly egg whites with a small amount of sunflower lecithin (both sunflower seeds and oils are also Whole30-compliant).
Plus, it packs a whopping 25 grams of protein per scoop. “[This brand] could make a better choice for someone who struggles to eat enough protein daily or for an athlete with a higher demand for protein,” says Palinski-Wade.
Per serving (1 scoop): 108 cal, 0 g fat, 1 g carbs, 25 g protein.
The only powder on this list made from hemp protein, Nutiva’s organic line is a good choice for vegans or vegetarians who need to avoid options made with egg or collagen, Palinski-Wade explains. It is lower in protein than some other options, but high in fiber, which can help promote fullness as well as digestive health when you’re on the Whole30.
Per serving (3 Tbsp): 90 cal, 3 g fat, 9 g carbs, 18 g protein.
Collagen proteins are allowed on the Whole30 plan, so this unflavored option is a good choice for dieters looking to increase their daily protein intake. If you don’t want to incorporate the powder into your meals, Palinski-Wade suggests adding it to your morning coffee or tea.
Per serving (2 scoops): 70 cal, 18 g protein.
The Paleo Pro brands of protein powder are made from a combination of egg and beef proteins, but make sure you stick with the original variety.
“This brand comes in unsweetened as well as stevia-sweetened options,” says Palinski-Wade, “but added sweeteners of any kind are to be avoided on the Whole30 plan.”
With 26 grams of protein per serving, this option contains a serious protein punch, she adds.
Per serving (1 scoop): 120 cal, 1 g fat, 1 g carbs, 26 g protein.
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