Best protein powders in the UK (United Kingdom)
There are hundreds of protein powders out there, in my opinion, here are the five best in the United Kingdom (UK) based upon quality, low cost, taste, muscle building ability, and health – see “What is the best protein powder?” section below. Please see also:
- Best protein powders in the EU (Europe)
- Best protein powders in Australia and New Zealand
- Best protein powders in America
(Updated 13th October 2018)
|Grams Protein in tub
|Cost per 30g serving
|Pink Sun Whey Isolate
|whey protein, lecithin
|Pulsin Whey Protein Isolate
|whey protein, lecithin
|MyProtein Impact Whey
|Whey Protein Concentrate, Soy Lecithin
|Protein Works Naked Whey Isolate
|Whey, natural flavors, cocoa powder, stevia, lecithin
|Pure Whey Protein
|Whey Protein Concentrate
How to use the above table
Start by looking at the price for a 30g serving of protein, thats what matters to most people. If you are cutting and trying to lose fat then look at the “% Protein” column, that is the percent of the calories from protein. Ideally it would be 100% but no filtering process is perfect and some trace carbs are left in, also, some protein powders add a bit of sugar. Note that these prices were current as of 11/15/2014 but they will fluctuate a lot. Be especially aware of shipping costs as that can make a huge change in the price, many offer free shipping. Also, the links I have provided to find the product are general search links. The reason for that on a daily basis, new sellers offer the specified product and often the newer offerings are cheaper. Make sure to check the label carefully and make sure it matches the information in the table before buying!
What Would Scooby Do?
In the United Kingdom, as in America, its really easy to find cheap protein powders but its really tough to find protein powders that are not packed with artificial flavors and artificial sweeteners. In fact, I found two products made in the UK that I personally would consider excellent, its the Pink Sun Everyday Whey Concentrate and the Pulsin Whey Protein Isolate, they both only have filtered whey and lethicin – excellent products. The trouble is that its nearly four times the price of some of the other protein powders. If I was on a budget, I would go with the Bulk Powders Pure Whey Protein or the MyProtein Impact Whey Isolate. They both have sucralose which I hate but if you cant afford the Pink Sun I would go with these. Again, make sure to choose the unflavored because all the yummy flavors add beakers of nasty chemicals.
Which builds muscle the fastest?
Protein powder is not magic. Protein powder is not steroids. You don’t NEED protein powder unless you are a vegetarian or vegan because you can get all the high quality protein you need by eating chicken, fish, beef and pork. If you are a meat eater, real food builds muscle just as quickly as protein powder. Protein powder is simply a more convenient way to get your protein than having to carry around a Tupperware with grilled chicken breast, brown rice, and brocolli in it. The protein powder business is a big money and the marketing folks make all kinds of impressive sounding stuff up to make you buy their product over their competitors. Again, please read The Truth About Whey. Basically there are two ways the quality of protein can be ruined, the first is high temperatures and the second is extremes in PH. The reason I dont recommend anything with ion-exchange whey in it is that it is exposed to extremes in PH. Any protein powder that is concentrated by using filtration is done at a neutral PH and at temperatures low enough that the protein remains unharmed. The marketing people have wars about whose filtration method is better but in my book, all filtered products are of the same high quality. Again, dont be swayed by any claims of “scientific” superiority, trademarked processes, or fancy marketing terms.
Which is the best for mass gain?
Please read about protein powders, protein shakes, and mass gain powders. If you want to gain “mass” then mix 1 bag or the above high quality protein powder with a 5 pound bag of sugar and you get the highest quality “Mass Gain” powder around. Don’t believe the marketing mumbo-jumbo on these mass gain powders, they are just protein, sugar, and a few useless supplements tossed in to make them sound good. I don’t recommend any “Mass Gain” products but if you are going to use one anyway, make your own and save 300%. Mass gain = fat gain. You dont gain muscle any faster by downing a bunch of sugar with your protein unless you are under 5% bodyfat.
What does it take to be the Best Protein Powder?
What does it take to be the Best Protein Powder?Plain whey is only about 13% protein and the rest is carbs so you would get fat trying to gain muscle using that. There are two basic ways to remove the carbs from the whey, by cold filtering and by ion exchange. In my opinion, filtered is far superior to ion exchange whey, please read The Truth About Whey if you want more information. Heat and PH changes can decrease the quality of the whey and cold filtering uses neither. I also stay completely away from anything that says “blend” or “proprietary protein mix” because to me, that says that they just dump in whatever is cheapest that day and they don’t need to tell you what they are really using. Every manufacturer has their own marketing word for the protein concentration process but the only important thing is that it contains the word “filter”, it can be nano-filtered, cross-filtered, ultra-filtered, or scooby-filtered – you get the idea. All filtering is done cold and without the use of anything that changes the PH so these all filtered products have excellent quality protein.In my book, the other thing that qualifies a protein powder for this “Best Protein Powder” list is being natural.
There is a lot of garbage out there, read Consumer Reports article on protein powders if you want to see how bad it gets. It doesn’t have to be organic, thats twice as expensive but at least the ingredients need to be clean. The ingredients of a good protein powder in my book looks like this “Ingredients: filtered whey, sugar, lecithin” – thats it. Even better if the “sugar” is missing because whey is sweet by itself, it doesn’t need sugar. I don’t want creatine in it, I don’t want caffeine in it, I don’t want ephedrine in it, I don’t want vitamins in it, I don’t want it laced with pro-hormones – I just want protein. If you want any of that other stuff then buy it separately so that you can control exactly how much you are getting.
PS: I know the title is “top 5” but there are six listed. The reason is that one of the recommended ones isn’t currently available :)
About Protein Powder Flavors
You will note that all of the products I recommend are either unflavored or chocolate, there is a very good reason for that. A lot of times its the flavors that add incredible amounts of artificial junk and a nasty aftertaste which is the reason that I always choose unflavored or chocolate. Chocolate is easy, you just add natural cocoa powder. Cocoa powder is virtually nonfat, its natural, and its good flavoring – easy peasy. Unflavored whey also tastes really good but note that unflavored does NOT mean vanilla. Vanilla typically tastes horrible in my experience and almost always has a horrible aftertaste, again, because of the artificial flavors. Back to unflavored whey, it tastes amazingly good. Unflavored, unsweetened whey has a very pleasant neutral flavor that is slightly sweet and if you add it to water it tastes a lot like … well, milk. Milk that is 90% protein instead of 5% protein. The fruit flavors like strawberry and banana are virtually always artificial and pack a really nasty aftertaste so choose those only after very careful inspection of the ingredients list. Flavors that sound like candy bars should be avoided like the plague as they are always artificial – “toffee bar crunch”? Nope, pass.
So, please stick to either chocolate or unflavored protein powders!
Why isn’t my favorite protein in the above list?
If your protein is not listed, its probably because:
- It has artificial flavors or artificial sweeteners
- It has other supplements mixed into it (creatine, weight loss products, vitamins, etc)
- The protein is a “proprietary” mix, a “blend” or a trademarked name- those are just codewords for they put in whatever cr*p is cheapest that day
- Its ion-exchange and not cold filtered
- It has ingredients other than whey
If you think I have overlooked a protein powder, please let me know on Facebook by posting the ingredient list and I will add it above. Note: Please read the ingredients list of the protein powder you are suggesting and make sure it satisfies the above criteria!