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The best protein shake for losing weight, tried and tested by us

If weight loss is your goal, then read on to find the best protein shake for losing weight

Open bag of protein powder for weight loss with scoop on light green background

(Image credit: Getty Images)


If you’re looking for the best protein shake for losing weight, then you’re in the right place. Getting an adequate amount of protein is important for women and men, but it becomes even more essential when we factor weight loss into the equation.

As we lose weight, we often lose muscle mass, and for some people, especially women over the age of 40, this can lead to problems as we get older, such as osteoporosis (a health condition that weakens the bones). A sufficient amount of protein can also keep our metabolism working hard and keep us fuller for longer. In short, protein shakes can make a great addition to your diet, especially if you’re working out regularly.

With the protein market forecasted to be worth $20.47 billion by 2030, there are plenty of protein shakes and some of the You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now. available now on the market, but deciphering what's right for your weight loss journey can be tricky. To help out, we tested nine of the best protein shakes for weight loss and marked them on ingredients, how well they blended with milk and water, protein per serving, and overall taste.

HOW WE TESTED THE BEST PROTEIN SHAKE FOR WEIGHT LOSS

There are a range of protein shakes that can help us with weight loss out there, particularly when consumed alongside regular You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now., but what exactly should be looking for in a product? "Most protein shakes contain around 80% protein, are high in essential amino acids, and low in calories," says You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now., senior nutritionist at Holland & Barrett. "Diet whey is a good choice for those cutting calories and products containing whey, soy, and milk proteins can help you feel fuller for longer. You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now. shakes are now also widely available and tend to be made from soy or pea protein, both of which still contain plenty of essential amino acids for building muscle."
To find the best protein shake for losing weight, we assessed a number of different factors including:

  • Type of protein—the three main types of protein include: concentrate, isolate, and hydra. Experts believe that isolate is often better for weight loss, as it’s often lower in carbohydrates and fats.
  • Ingredients—included in protein shakes are whey, casein, soy, rice, and pea protein as a base, along with added ingredients such as artificial sweeteners, vitamins, prebiotics, and even electrolytes.
  • Flavor—the best protein shake for losing weight had to be one that tasted good, so we also rated our products on flavor.
  • Sugar content—protein shakes with a low carb intake (ideally less than 5g per serving) are best if you're wanting to lose weight.
  • Calories—if weight loss is your goal, then you need a protein shake low in calories. We marked shakes on the number of calories they contained per serving, which ranged from 91-215 calories per serving.
  • Protein per serving—powders with a higher protein content will help keep you fuller for longer and keep your metabolism firing on all cylinders. Anywhere upwards of 20g of protein per serving is ideal.

BEST PROTEIN SHAKE FOR WEIGHT LOSS


1. DECATHLON ISOLATE WHEY PROTEIN

whey-protein-isolate-900g-chocolate.jpg

(Image credit: Decathlon)

The overall best protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving : 118
Protein per serving: 24g
Protein type: Whey isolate
Sizes available: 900g
RRP: $30.32 / £22.99

REASONS TO BUY

+
Mild taste
+
Low fat and low sugar
+
High-protein amount per serving

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Unsuitable for vegans or lactose-intolerant people

You might associate Decathlon better with sports equipment, but the brand also does a range of protein powders. Our testers tried the Isolate Whey Protein from the range, and were pleasantly surprised at how high-quality the powder was for just $30.32 (£22.99). Many protein shakes have an overpowering taste of protein, however, this shake had a mild (but still chocolatey) flavor. This might become a bit of an issue if you wanted to blend the powder with just water, rather than milk or nut milk, but its mild taste means you could add it to smoothies and such, without the risk of making it too sickly.

In terms of ingredients, the shake uses grass-fed whey and is low sugar, with just 3g per serving. It also has a high amount of protein (24g) per serving, making it ideal for those who want to keep their protein intake high while keeping their carbohydrates and sugars down. Our testers agreed that for the price and quality of ingredients you can't really go too wrong with this protein shake if you're wanting to lose weight.





2. MYPROTEIN CLEAR WHEY ISOLATE

MyProtein Clear Whey Isolate

(Image credit: Nutrition Depot)

The best non-milk based protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 89
Protein per serving : 20g
Protein type: Hydrolysate
Sizes available: 522g or 1.6kg
RRP: $35.59 / £26.99

REASONS TO BUY

+
Great for people who don't like milky shakes
+
Easy to prepare
+
Low calorie

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Sugary compared to other shakes

Many people find milky protein powder difficult to stomach. One of the great You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now. is that it can come in many different forms. So for those people, the Clear Whey Isolate from MyProtein is a great alternative. Available in a range of alternative fruity flavors that don’t follow the traditional route of protein powder, such as Orange Mango, Peach Tea, Bitter Lemon, and Watermelon, this shake makes a nice change from the usual types of protein powders.

Testers liked this protein powder for its squash-like drinkability and how tasty it was with just water. In terms of weight loss, this protein powder scored extra points for being a whey isolate protein and at 90 calories a serving, it's great for people looking to up their protein intake without significantly increasing their calories. However, there are a lot of artificial flavors and sweeteners in this shake, which can contribute to increased sugar cravings in the long run, so best to avoid this shake if you want to try and cut down on sugar in your diet.




3. HUEL COMPLETE PROTEIN

Huel Complete Protein

(Image credit: Huel)

The best vegan protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving : 105
Protein per serving : 20g
Protein type: Hemp, Faba and Pea Protein
Sizes available: 754g
RRP: $65.93 / £50 for two tubs

REASONS TO BUY

+
Vegan option
+
Includes 26 vitamins and minerals
+
Big tub with lots of servings

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Powdery aftertaste
TODAY'S BEST DEALS

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Huel Complete Protein is one of the vegan protein powders available on the market and includes 26 vitamins and minerals within its formula. Made with animal-free ingredients, such as pea protein, hemp, and faba, it’s also gluten-free. Testers thought that this was a great option for those looking for a sweeter-tasting protein. And for those looking to lose weight, it only comes in at 105 calories per serving.

Despite not containing whey or other milk products, this protein is also 100 percent nutritionally complete, meaning that you will still get the essential amino acids and fats that standard whey protein provides. Our testers found this protein shake easy to prepare, but noted that consumers could be put off by the slight powdery aftertaste of this protein. Overall, it was definitely one of the nicest tasting vegan protein shakes for weight loss that we tried during our testing process.


4. PROTEIN WORKS DIET MEAL REPLACEMENT EXTREME

Protein Works Diet Meal Replacement Extreme

(Image credit: amazon)

The best filling protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 214
Protein per serving: 24g
Protein type: Blend of Soy and Casein Protein
Sizes available: 500g, 1kg, 2kg, 4kg
RRP: $16.49 / £12.50

REASONS TO BUY

+
Filling
+
High protein

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Powdery aftertaste

Protein shakes are often best taken in conjunction with a healthy diet, however, many people use meal replacement shakes if they're short on time, or don't get enough protein at every meal. The Protein Works Diet Meal Replacement Extreme is high in protein (coming in at 24g per serving) and packed full of vitamins and minerals.
The idea of the shake is to help you lose weight, maintain muscle mass and also help keep hunger at bay. This was a higher-calorie shake than some of the others we tested, coming in 214 calories per serving, however, as this is meant to replace either your breakfast or lunch, it's only natural that the calories would be a little higher to keep you satiated.

Experts advise caution when using meal replacement shakes as a weight-loss tool, as many don't contain the micronutrients and fiber that our bodies need. However, as a short-term solution, they can be effective for weight loss. Our testers did notice that the 500g packet was a little small (especially as you'd be wanting to drink this at least once a day), so if you do like this protein, then size up to one of the bigger bags available.


5. PE NUTRITION PERFORMANCE LEAN

PE Nutrition Performance Lean

(Image credit: ebay)

The best low fat protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 98
Protein per serving: 12g
Protein type: Protein Isolate
Sizes available: 900g
RRP: $26.38 / £20

REASONS TO BUY

+
Blends well
+
Low in fat and sugar
+
Added prebiotics

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Low amount of protein per serving

One of the best-tasting protein shakes our testers tried was the lean vanilla option from PE. Formulated with green tea extract and prebiotics, the ingredients in this shake were a huge added bonus. Testers commented that they didn't feel bloated after consuming this shake and that it blended perfectly with zero lumps.
PE also comes recommended by the experts. "PE Nutrition offers a variety of different products for those wanting to reach their goals, from Simply Whey, to Performance Gainer and Performance Lean, which can people on their journey to lose weight and tone up," says Glover. "Opting for this lean protein means that you can maintain muscle while losing weight."

With only 98 calories and 1.7g of sugar per serving, it scored well in our testing, however, one point of concern was the lack of protein per serving. In fact, this shake scored lower than most of the other protein shakes did, coming in at only 12g per serving. Also, compared to other brands, there aren't as many variations in flavor available. PE only stocks Vanilla, Chocolate, and Strawberry, which could put people off from investing in the brand.


6. FORM PEAKBLEND

Form Peakblend

(Image credit: form nutrition)

The best low-sugar protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 177
Protein per serving: 17g
Protein type: Pea Protein
Sizes available: 1.3kg
RRP: $65 / £49

REASONS TO BUY

+
Compostable pack
+
No artificial flavors or sweeteners
+
Plant-based option

REASONS TO AVOID

-
More expensive than other brands

Form provides many different protein options depending on your goals, but if you're wanting to lose weight, then their Peakblend Vegan Meal Replacement can be a good option. This nutritionally complete protein is high in protein, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids, containing 26 vitamins and minerals, as well as other natural ingredients to support gut health and immunity.

Testers agreed that this was a great low sugar protein shake to help people reach their weight loss goals. Even though the calories per serving were a little higher, this shake provides a meal replacement option, so the extra calories will keep you fuller for longer. Of course, with any low sugar product, it does take a little while for your tastebuds to adjust to the change in sweetness – but that's not to say that this shake is unpleasant. The only negative our testers could find was the price. At £49 for a 1.6kg bag, it was the priciest protein powder that we tried, but Form's attention to detail with formula and packaging comes through.


7. BULK PURE WHEY ISOLATE

Bulk Pure Whey Isolate

(Image credit: amazon)

The best flavored protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 108
Protein per serving : 24g
Protein type: Whey Protein Isolate
Sizes available: 500g, 1kg, 2.5kg and 5kg
RRP: $26 / £19.44

REASONS TO BUY

+
Different size options available
+
Good variety of flavors

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Slightly higher in sugars
-
Can become frothy
TODAY'S BEST DEALS

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Bulk is a well-known protein brand, with many different options of protein available depending on your goals. We opted for the Pure Whey Isolate Powder, which came in at 108 calories per serving and contained 24g of protein per serving.

Testers enjoyed the consistency of this shake, as it dissolved well with milk and water, and the taste was neither too overpowering nor underwhelming. Our testers did point out that the shake was a little frothy, but some people like this, so that is very much down to personal preference. In terms of taste, this shake scored highest out of all the protein shakes we tried and the good news is that it comes in a variety of different flavors, meaning if you get bored with one then there are plenty of others to choose from.


8. PHD DIET WHEY

PhD Diet Whey

(Image credit: amazon)

The best budget protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving: 91
Protein per serving : 17g
Protein type: Whey and Soya Protein
Sizes available: 500g, 1kg, 2kg
RRP: $12 / £8.99

REASONS TO BUY

+
Affordable price
+
Pleasant taste

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Only 17g of protein per serving

Another well-established protein brand in the fitness industry is PhD. PhD offers a high-protein lean matrix option for those looking to lose weight and tone up. Like PE nutrition, it combines protein with fat-burning ingredients such as l-carnitine, CLA and green tea to help people meet their weight loss goals.

Our testers had high hopes for this protein but felt it didn't blend as well as some of the other powders and shakes we tried. Also, the flavor was a little too sweet, leaning towards sickly at times. Nutritionally, it's still low in sugar (under 3g), but it does contain only 17g of protein per serving, which our testers found a little disappointing.

Overall, this is a great budget option if you're looking for the best protein shake for weight loss, but we'd recommend sticking to shakes with a high amount of protein per serving to keep you fuller for longer and to help you retain muscle mass.


9. PULSIN PEA PROTEIN POWDER

Pulsin Pea Protein Powder

(Image credit: amazon)

The best unflavored protein shake for losing weight

SPECIFICATIONS

Calories per serving : 41
Protein per serving: 8g
Protein type: Pea Protein
Sizes available: 250g, 1kg
RRP: $12 / £8.99

REASONS TO BUY

+
Vegan option
+
No added ingredients
+
Good for adding to smoothies and bakes

REASONS TO AVOID

-
Low in protein

Unflavored protein powders aren't to everyone's taste, but they can be great for adding to smoothies, yogurts, and bakes, because they take on the flavor of whatever you choose to pair it with.

Testers loved the minimal ingredients in this powder (it only contains pea protein) and noticed that following the taste test, they experienced very minimal bloating – a good sign that your body is digesting the protein well. If you're looking to eliminate sugar and artificial sweeteners from your diet, then this is a great option for you, as it contains no more than 0.1g of sugar per serving. However, it doesn't pack as much protein as some of the other brands, with each serving only containing a measly 8g of protein.
Testers agreed that while this is a great plant-based, unflavored option, it might not help you reach your weight loss goals, unless you add a few servings to your daily meals.

DO PROTEIN SHAKES HELP WITH WEIGHT LOSS?

"Protein powder is an effective, easy, and proven way to help with sustainable weight loss," says Glover. "As well as helping with fat loss, protein supplementation can help you retain your lean muscle."
Protein is more satiating than fat and carbs, as it takes longer to digest than carbohydrates, which helps us feel full. This results in fewer cravings and reduced snacking. "What’s more, digesting protein burns more calories than digesting carbohydrates, meaning that eating more protein will increase metabolic rate; meaning you burn more calories at rest," adds Glover.
Of course, protein powder isn’t a magic weight loss powder. Simply adding protein shakes to your daily diet won’t make you lose weight, but it will help support you on your weight loss journey by helping you retain muscle and keep you full as you reduce your calories.

ARE PROTEIN SHAKES GOOD FOR WOMEN?

Protein shakes can be just as beneficial for women as men. Here, our experts why this food group is key for both genders.
"Men and women do carry weight differently, however when it comes to weight loss, the same rules apply for both genders," says Glover. "Some protein powders are marketed more towards women and avoid words like ‘muscle’ to dispel the myth that protein powder makes you pack on bulk. However, the formulas are generally the same, save the occasional addition of vitamins and minerals associated with women’s health are added to the protein, such as folic acid, vitamin B6 and iron."
As protein is our source of amino acids (the building blocks that our body needs to repair and renew muscle, hair, and skin cells) and is responsible for building brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) that support mood and sleep, it's important that we get enough in our diet.
"For women, in particular, maintaining healthy bone mass is an important part of healthy aging and adequate protein is important for this," says nutritionist You do not have permission to view the full content of this post. Log in or register now.. "Including protein at every eating event is a valuable clinical pearl that we share with clients whose goals are linked to weight loss. Not only does this allow the body to gain all the building blocks it needs for optimal function, it stabilizes energy levels, helps us to feel fuller for longer, and reduces the temptation for snacking."

source: womenandhome
 

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