Protein powder has given me a huge rash

I have been taking a lot of whey protein powder recently (about 5 scoops a day) as I am on a cut and it is a convenient way to keep my protein intake high without consuming lots of calories. I bought a new brand recently as the brand I usually buy (organic whey) was not available. I also bought some organic casein this time. However, my skin has broken out into a huge rash on my arms and neck/chest. I do not know if this is i) milk based protein powders in general; ii) casein specifically (the new addition to my diet) or iii) the new brand specifically.

I am split between the best route to take here. My options as I see them are:

  1. stop taking the powders altogether and then introduce them individually (old brand whey first and then new brand whey and finally casein) to try and determine what the issue is; or
  2. bite the bullet and just buy some vegan protein powder.

The problem with the latter is I will need to buy pea protein, which is not too bad on the PDCAAS scale (70-73+/-) but still much worse than whey (almost 100). I could take amino acids along with it to make sure it is complete. Alternatively, there is a vegan blend which is pea and faba bean proteins. Faba beans are even lower on the PDCAAS scale (65+/-) but the blended powder would provide a complete amino acid profile though. Alternatively, or additionally, I could buy some EAAs to mix in with just the pea protein or even the blended protein powder. I am also concerned about where I would get dairy/calcium from in my diet if I stop with whey completely.

Any help or advice with any of the above (strategy to deal with the rash; advice regarding the vegan protein powder) would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance!

Any thoughts to buying a high quality powder like Metabolic Drive?

1 Like

The original brand is organic, grass fed whey from a very reputable company. It is as high quality as it comes. Either I have developed some kind of reaction to milk proteins from taking so many or it is the new brand (which I only got because the old brand was out of stock) or it is the casein.

If I were to sort it out, I’d drop the casein, give it a couple weeks and see if it gets better.

If it’s not that, it’s probably the brand.

I assume you haven’t had reactions with other dairy products. Milk, cheese, butter, cream?

Where I live it is quite hard to find dairy products so I do not consume them habitually, just cheese from time to time, but no issues otherwise. This is one of the issues I have concerns about where I would get calcium from in my diet if I stop completely. I even have to plan my protein powder purchases weeks in advance as I buy them in Europe and have to have somebody bring them here for me and/or when I visit home.

Incidentally, your advice is what I think I have decided to do. I will continue using the new brand of whey only and drop the casein and see if it improves. Pending what happens there, I will either move back to the old brand (I still have a 5kg bag) or consider the vegan protein. Looks like casein is off the menu though.

1 Like

As a different animal based powder option, you could give Beef Protein Isolate a shot before switching to one of the Vegan options.

1 Like

This value I think is for pea protein from eating peas. The reason for the relatively low score is much of plant protein is bound to fiber making it less bioavailabe. Pea protein isolate would have a much higher PDCAAS.