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Protein Shake Gas?

So here’s the gig- I’m eating a lot. And I’m getting a lot of protein. Well, trying to get a lot of protein. The actual eating isn’t the problem. The problem is… I’m downing two shakes each day, and they’re causing me to fart some gas so rancid women clutch their babies to their breast and grown men weep for mercy.

When I take out the shakes, I have no problem. Hell, when I take out just the protein in the shakes (leaving a half cup of flaxmeal and a half cup of peanuts) I have no problem. It’s just the three scoops of whey that causes me such… distress.

So far I’ve tried switching from Grow! Whey to Metabolic Drive (Low-Carb). It helps some… but not enough. We’re talking about a 50% reduction in volume, but no reduction in intensity.

So short of switching out my shakes (which I can do but don’t want to… they’re just so quick and convenient), what can I do?

Ideas I haven’t tried because I’m not sure where do go with them but would love to hear from your experience with:

  • Activated charcoal caps
  • Probiotics
  • Digestive enzymes
  • GasX
  • Psylium Husk (I don’t have problem with bowel movement, but the worst it could do is waste my money, right?)

For the record, I doubt I am lactose intolerant- I eat cheese and cream daily, and haven’t had a problem with either.

Also, while I’ve had this problem for a long time, I never thought much of it until I upped the dose to 3 scoops and had such problems. Now I’d rather deal with it (if possible) than just scale it back a couple scoops.

Cliff Notes Version:

  • Grow! Whey and Metabolic Drive make me fart bad
  • I’m pretty sure it’s not lactose intolerance
  • If you’ve experienced this, how did you deal with it? Did any of the above bulleted ideas work?

Well while reading that the first thing that came to my mind was that you might be allergic. I dont know much about these things, but I reacted weird to my vanilla protein (from GNC) but not the strawberry one. I had a lot of gas from the vanilla, and bloating. I suggest switching the flavors? You might be allergic to the flavoring.

When I went on vacation for a week (no protein shakes) the next day back, I was brutal. My GF was on the verge of getting mad. Giving it a day or 2 and it’s not as bad

I haven’t personally had problems with protein shakes, however eggs make my ass smell like pure sulfur (I made a guy gag at the gym, and he might have even puked). After some research I decided to try some acidophilus (a probiotic) and since adding that into my daily pill regimn, both the frequency (I only fart as much as I did before I started consuming a lot of eggs) and intensity (I don’t think I have gaged anyone lately) have decreased a ton. So maybe a probiotic is worth a shot (or just make everyone else uncomfortable with your rancid ass)?

Gas from protein is an easy fix.

Basically protein servings above 40g usually end up in gas because the human body has trouble digesting that much protein.

The undigested protein is unable to pass through the lining of the small intestine and all the bacteria (good and bad) have a feast on those amino acids… which is why farts are composed mostly of nitrogen.

Anyways, digestive enzymes are awesome, I highly recommend those for gaining days where you have to eat alot and you don’t want a headache from all the effort your digestive system is giving to digest food.

I used to work at GNC so I’ve tried most supplements in that store… the enzymes are the only thing that would fix your gas since it’s due to undigested protein/carbs.

BTW don’t bother with a “multi” enzyme, just get a protein specific enzyme and/or carb specific, depending on what your meal will be really high in.

Good luck.

You’re eating too much protein and it’s sitting undigested in your colon. Just cut back.

[quote]PRCalDude wrote:
You’re eating too much protein and it’s sitting undigested in your colon. Just cut back. [/quote]

If someone NEEDS 50g of protein, but his body is unable to move the necessary enzymes to break it down… he shouldn’t be limited by that, right? Supplementing enzymes with large meals is the best solution I think.

[quote]PRCalDude wrote:
You’re eating too much protein and it’s sitting undigested in your colon. Just cut back. [/quote]

I don’t think this is it.

I had moderate gas when I was consuming 200-250g/protein. About 40 of this was from Grow!

The last few days I’ve cut out the whey/Metabolic Drive, my intake has been closer to 320-350, and there’s no gas.

I’m shooting for 450g (I’m a big guy and all that).

IF it was sitting undigested in my colon, it would still be there when the shakes were removed. I had thought of this (clever, aren’t I) and by removing the whey/Metabolic Drive, more or less ruled it out (for me- if there may be something I’m overlooking, sock it to me).

[quote]Maximillian wrote:
Gas from protein is an easy fix.

Basically protein servings above 40g usually end up in gas because the human body has trouble digesting that much protein.

The undigested protein is unable to pass through the lining of the small intestine and all the bacteria (good and bad) have a feast on those amino acids… which is why farts are composed mostly of nitrogen.

Anyways, digestive enzymes are awesome, I highly recommend those for gaining days where you have to eat alot and you don’t want a headache from all the effort your digestive system is giving to digest food.

I used to work at GNC so I’ve tried most supplements in that store… the enzymes are the only thing that would fix your gas since it’s due to undigested protein/carbs.

BTW don’t bother with a “multi” enzyme, just get a protein specific enzyme and/or carb specific, depending on what your meal will be really high in.

Good luck.[/quote]

hmm… I’m not sure I follow the specific science behind your proposal, but I’m willing to give it a try.

I am leery of purchasing from GNC. There is one conveniently located two blocks from my apartment. Too conveniently.

Any specific brand/product you’d recommend?

I’m from canada… we carry different, more “canadian” brands.

Although, from looking at their website, try the “super digestive enzymes”, even though its multiple enzymes it seems more heavily carb and protein based.

Basically what I was saying in my earlier post is that gas from farting can only come from one place… the bacteria in your small intestine. They produce gas when living with abundant food, you have to figure out where that extra food is coming from.

Ha ha, very interesting thread and at the same time very common problem. If I were to guess I would say there is something in the shakes you are allergic to.

I wouldn’t focus on the protein itself but maybe one of the fillers or something with the flavoring. From my own experience, If I drink Ultra Size (Beverly Nutrition) Vanilla I do OK for the most part, however (not to gross you guys out) if I go with chocolate I have exactly 5 minutes to get to the nearest rest room or…well you get the picture.

Since the formulas are so similar I have to assume it is the Chocolate flavoring (and this has been furher confirmed by trying other powders they offer and mistakenly drinking the chocolate version). Don’t get me wrong, I love the taste of chocolate but if it is going to end up in the toilet in 5 minutes it becomes a waste of my money.

On a side note Dr. Serrano has just released a protein powder that is made from pretty unique sources (a combination of 100% hypoallergenic vegtable sources -no not soy) that looks very promising! Also many protein powders are manufactured at plants that have peanuts gluten and many other common allergens so there is always the possibility this is at play.

Honestly without an allergy test and going off what you describe the best advice I can offer is to not use these powders that are giving you the green apple quick step. First see if Biotest might swap them out for another flavor and see how that works, if you are still having problems I would say look into the new protein Dr. Serrano has or something like it. Good luck and good topic!

Hahaha, this was actually a topic over on Figure Athlete too, a while back. Something recommended there was to add plain yogurt to your Grow Whey shakes- I use greek yogurt because it has about half the carbs and more protein- and that works fine for me.

Seems to help with digesting it or something… actually I have no idea how it works; it just does. Of course, chocolate and p.b. type flavors taste Sha-NASTY with the yogurt, but adding a little ice, frozen berries and sweetener tastes great, or pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice and sweetener.

[quote]theAnj wrote:
Hahaha, this was actually a topic over on Figure Athlete too, a while back. Something recommended there was to add plain yogurt to your Grow Whey shakes- I use greek yogurt because it has about half the carbs and more protein- and that works fine for me.

Seems to help with digesting it or something… actually I have no idea how it works; it just does. Of course, chocolate and p.b. type flavors taste Sha-NASTY with the yogurt, but adding a little ice, frozen berries and sweetener tastes great, or pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice and sweetener. [/quote]

The yogurt would help because of the naturally occurring pro biotic acidophilus. The term acidophilus is used to describe a number of bacteria which help in human digestion.

These bacteria include L. acidophilus, L. casei, L. bulgaricus, among others. Lactobacilus acidophilus is one of the bacteria found in these mixtures, but the term acidophilus usually refers to a combination of L. acidophilus with other beneficial bacteria.

Acidophilus is touted for its many health benefits, some of which have been known about for thousands of years. The bacteria is found naturally throughout the human body, and most likely made its way into a food long ago, beginning a cycle of natural fermentation which people eventually learned to artificially duplicate.

When acidophilus are placed in a sugar-rich environment, they begin to eat the sugars they find there. They then convert these sugars into various things, including lactic acid. This adds a distinctive taste, and lowers the pH of the food or liquid so that other flora do not find it as friendly an environment, helping to preserve the food.

Yogurt is probably the most well-known of foods that make use of acidophilus, and it is very easy to notice the sour taste of the lactic acid when eating this food. Other foods that contain acidophilus include sauerkraut, kombucha, kinchi, kefir, and many other fermented food products.

Acidophilus can help protect the body against harmful bacteria, parasites, and other organisms. As it breaks down, it releases things such as hydrogen peroxide that create a toxic environment for unhealthy creatures in the body, helping to drive them out. It also plays an important role in digestion, helping to produce a number of chemicals which aid in the digestion process.

Many alternative modalities of healing look to acidophilus for a wide range of health benefits. In addition to basic digestive assistance, acidophilus is thought to help bolster the immune system as a whole. It is also thought to provide some relief from intestinal problems, such as diarrhea.

The fungal infection of Candida albicans, more commonly referred to as a yeast infection when it affects the genital area, is thought by some to be controlled by acidophilus. Since acidophilus occurs naturally in the genitals, and plays a role in warding off such infections, some people advocate topical treatment.

The topical application of yogurt, which contains acidophilus, is thought by many to help relieve and ultimately cure a yeast infection. Oral ingestion is also recommended, either of yogurt, or of an acidophilus supplement.

Because antibiotics kill the so-called probiotics, such as acidophilus, as well as harmful bacteria, many people feel that an antibiotic regime can lead to outbreaks of numerous problems, including yeast infections. It is recommended by many to take supplements of acidophilus and eat acidophilus-rich foods for a period of time after completing a regimen of antibiotics

[quote]IF it was sitting undigested in my colon, it would still be there when the shakes were removed. I had thought of this (clever, aren’t I) and by removing the whey/Metabolic Drive, more or less ruled it out (for me- if there may be something I’m overlooking, sock it to me).
[/quote]

I thought you said you took out the protein and it went away:

I must have misunderstood what you were saying there.

Anyways, if more protein works better for you and won’t cause you to turn into an alternative source of energy, have at it.

Whey is crappy protein and gives me similar issues.

It is a digestion issue. Perhaps digestive aids will help.

I just cut back my protein and I feel better.

I don’t want it that bad that I will take supplements to help me digest supplements. Whole foods for me now.

I recommend Bromelain at 500 mg and 2,000 GDU per cap, by Country Life ( like most of their stuff). Take one with each protein shake and gauge the effects. Go up to two, but I doubt you’d need three.

If two doesn’t help at all, take OUT the bromelain and start with 650 mg Betaine HCL (also by Country Life). Titrate up: 1, 2, 3 max caps with each shake. Doesn’t help? Go to next option.

1 cap bromelain, 1 cap betaine HCL. Then try 2 caps bromelain, 1 cap betaine. The bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapple and helps to digest protein.

Personally, I’d say you should start with 1, MAYBE two caps of bromelain, taken with the shake. If NO change from 1-2 caps, try 1 cap bromelain and 1 cap betaine HCL.

[quote]Maximillian wrote:
Basically protein servings above 40g usually end up in gas because the human body has trouble digesting that much protein.
[/quote]

Sorry I don’t buy it! 40g is NOT a lot of protein. How much protein in an average chicken breast or decent size steak?

One thought occurs though, as the shake is liquid (duh!) possibly it goes through the upper digestive system too quickly?

[quote]Boffin wrote:
Maximillian wrote:
Basically protein servings above 40g usually end up in gas because the human body has trouble digesting that much protein.

Sorry I don’t buy it! 40g is NOT a lot of protein. How much protein in an average chicken breast or decent size steak?

One thought occurs though, as the shake is liquid (duh!) possibly it goes through the upper digestive system too quickly?[/quote]

That actually make sense.

Thank you all for your input.

My intent is to start with the cheapest, easiest fix and move on from there. I’ll be dropping by GNC later on today (because really- what’s easier than taking a pill?).

If that doesn’t work I’ll pick up some yogurt from Whole Foods when I go shopping on Sunday. I hate yogurt. Man I hate yogurt. The taste man, it’s just… but if it works, who am I to argue with results?

I checked out Dr. Serrano’s protien powder and… honestly, it looks like some of the most hyped and expensive stuff on the market. It’s roughly fifteen cents per gram of protein, and when I looked at the ingredients, it’s rice and pea protein with colustrum, inulin and glycine.

When I find a solution, I’ll post the results. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

[quote]Boffin wrote:
One thought occurs though, as the shake is liquid (duh!) possibly it goes through the upper digestive system too quickly?[/quote]

Wouldn’t this be a universal problem though?

And… to be honest, there’s 2/3cup of flax meal and 1/2 cup of peanuts in the shake as well. Wouldn’t this slow the movement through the digestive track?