Protein is the building block of life. It's essential for every cell in our bodies, playing a crucial role in everything from repairing tissues to making enzymes and hormones. For bariatric patients, the importance of protein is even more pronounced. After undergoing weight loss surgery, the body needs ample protein to heal and recover. That's where protein shakes come in. They're a convenient, effective way to ensure you're getting the protein your body needs, especially when your diet may be limited post-surgery. Here we'll look into the science and what makes up the best bariatric protein shakes.
After weight loss surgery, your body goes through a lot of changes. One of the most significant changes is your diet. You're eating less, but your body's nutritional needs are higher than ever. That's where protein comes into play. It's crucial for wound healing and tissue repair, helping your body recover from the surgery.
But the benefits of protein don't stop there. It also helps preserve muscle mass during weight loss, ensuring that you're losing fat and not muscle. Plus, protein can help keep you feeling full, which can curb overeating and help with weight management in the long term.
When it comes to choosing a protein shake, not all are created equal, especially for bariatric patients. Here are some key factors to consider when looking for the best bariatric protein shakes:
High Protein Content: The primary purpose of a protein shake is to provide protein, so naturally, a good shake should be high in protein. Look for shakes that provide at least 15-30 grams of protein per serving.
Low in Sugar: After bariatric surgery, it's important to limit your sugar intake. Too much sugar can lead to dumping syndrome, a group of symptoms like nausea and dizziness that can occur after eating high-sugar foods. Choose protein shakes that are low in sugar or use natural sweeteners.
Vitamin and Mineral Fortified: After surgery, your body needs extra vitamins and minerals to aid in recovery and overall health. Many protein shakes are fortified with essential vitamins and minerals, making them an excellent way to supplement your diet.
Taste: Let's face it, if a protein shake doesn't taste good, you're less likely to drink it. Look for shakes with positive taste reviews. Many come in a variety of flavors, so you can find one that suits your palate.
Easy to Digest: Some people may experience digestive issues after bariatric surgery. A good protein shake should be easy on the stomach and not cause any discomfort.
Quality Ingredients: Look for protein shakes that are made with high-quality ingredients. Avoid shakes with a long list of artificial additives.
When it comes to protein shakes, there's a wide variety of protein sources to choose from. Each type of protein has its own unique set of benefits and potential drawbacks. Let's take a closer look at some of the most common types:
Soy Protein: Soy protein is a plant-based protein that's a good option for vegetarians, vegans, or those with lactose intolerance. It's a complete protein, meaning it contains all the essential amino acids your body needs. Some studies suggest that soy protein may also have heart health benefits.
Whey Protein: Whey protein is derived from milk and is quickly and easily absorbed by the body. It's a complete protein and is particularly high in the amino acid leucine, which plays a key role in muscle growth and recovery. However, it's not suitable for those with lactose intolerance or a milk allergy.
Caseinate or Milk Protein: Caseinate, also known as milk protein, is another dairy-based protein. It's absorbed more slowly than whey protein, providing a steady release of amino acids over time. This makes it a good option for a meal replacement or before bed.
Pea Protein: Pea protein is another plant-based option that's often used in vegan protein powders. It's hypoallergenic and easy to digest, making it a good option for those with food sensitivities. However, it's not a complete protein on its own and is often combined with other plant proteins to ensure all essential amino acids are provided.
Here are the most popular bariatric protein shake brands, in alphabetical order:
|AmBari Nutrition is a leading manufacturer and distributor of high-quality Bariatric and Medical Weight Loss products. They offer a range of products such as protein bars, shakes, entrees, snacks, and vitamins that are formulated to meet the unique nutritional needs of bariatric patients.|
|Bariatric Advantage is a trusted name in the bariatric community, offering a range of nutritional products specifically designed for bariatric patients. Their protein shakes are packed with high-quality protein and essential vitamins and minerals, ensuring you get the nutrition you need in a delicious and convenient form.|
|The New Direction Weight Management System is designed using cutting-edge scientific research. It uses a blend of ingredients that help your body burn fat more effectively during weight loss. The program includes different types of dairy proteins, which are absorbed at varying rates, helping to maintain steady protein levels and support tissue repair.|
|Each product in the Numetra line is carefully formulated to provide a balanced source of nutrients, with a focus on preserving metabolic rate. The inclusion of prebiotic fibers and a unique strain of probiotics supports the microbiome and optimizes intestinal health.|
|Proti Diet is known for their high-protein, low-carb products that are perfect for weight loss and maintenance. Their protein shakes are a great way to get a protein boost without the extra calories and carbs.|
|Proti-VLC products, by Bariatrix, are high-protein, low-calorie foods designed to help you feel full while still maintaining the high protein your body needs. Their protein bars, shakes, and snacks are all sold at competitive prices and have a really nice variety of items.|
Here we've compiled a list of the top 10 most popular and best rated bariatric protein shakes based on sales numbers and customer reviews, in no particular order:
This shake is not only high in protein but also packed with 24 essential vitamins and minerals. It's a comprehensive meal replacement that's designed to meet the nutritional needs of bariatric patients. All of the flavors are big sellers but Vanilla seems to be the highest rated.
This high-protein shake is a favorite among bariatric patients. With 35 grams of protein per serving, it's designed to keep you feeling full and satisfied. It's also low in carbs and fat, making it an excellent choice for weight management. Chocolate and Vanilla are both popular flavors.
This protein shake provides 15g of protein and only 80 calories per serving, making it a nutritionally balanced choice for bariatric patients. It's gluten-free and suitable for those who are lactose intolerant. The rich, milk chocolate flavor is well-received by customers, with over 300 reviews praising its taste and easy preparation.
This sugar-free protein shake is perfect for those on low-carb and low-sugar diets. It provides 24g of high-quality whey protein isolate and 5g of fiber per serving. With a 4.94-star rating from 62 reviews, customers love its taste and the weight loss results they've achieved with it.
Offering a unique New York cheesecake flavor, this protein shake delivers 15g of protein and just 90 calories per serving. It's versatile too, as it can be enjoyed as a shake or prepared as a pudding. Customers appreciate its taste and versatility, as reflected in its 64 reviews and 4+ star rating.
This high-protein meal replacement shake is designed to support the nutritional needs of bariatric patients, providing 27g of protein and essential vitamins and minerals per serving. Its rich chocolate flavor is a hit among customers, earning a 4.58-star rating. Customers appreciate its taste and the nutritional balance it offers.
This AmBari bariatric protein shake is a delightful blend of creamy vanilla flavor and high-quality protein. It's a favorite among customers for its smooth texture and delicious taste. With 15g of protein per serving, it's a great choice for bariatric patients looking to increase their protein intake. The shake also has a 5-star rating, with customers praising its taste and effectiveness.
This shake offers a unique and tasty combination of chocolate and banana flavors. It's packed with 20g of protein per serving, making it a nutritious choice for bariatric patients. The shake has a 4.9-star rating, with customers complimenting its taste and the convenience of its single-serving packets.
This protein shake doubles as a delightful treat, offering a delicious cookies and cream flavor. It provides 27g of protein per serving, making it a substantial meal replacement option.
For those who prefer a bit of flavor in their protein shakes, this is a must-try. This shake offers a unique twist on the traditional protein shake with a spiced carrot cake flavor.
Allison, a certified nutritionist and research author, brings over 15 years of experience in the health and weight loss industry. Allison's influence extends through her authorship of multiple health and wellness journals, where she shares her expertise and research on medical weight loss and bariatric medicine.
Reviewed By: Dr. K. Huffman
Dr. Kevin D. Huffman, D.O., is a board-certified bariatric physician renowned for his expertise in treating obesity. With over 10,000 patients and a reputation as a national leader in bariatric medicine, he has trained hundreds of healthcare providers. As the founder of American Bariatric Consultants, Dr. Huffman develops protocols and training materials sought after by medical societies, pharmaceutical companies, patients, and hospitals.