Customer Review

2,881 of 3,022 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why This is the one of the best Protein Supplement in the Market, A critical analysis from a Bio technologist, August 28, 2011
This review is from: Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard, Double Rich Chocolate, 5 Pound (Health and Beauty)
As a fitness enthusiast and a Science guy, I am always curious to find the real value of a supplement. What works and what does not work. More importantly, I believe the analysis of a product should be based on strong scientific knowledge base, combined with good old fashion practical use of the product, and only then one should come down to the final conclusion.

This product review and analysis was conducted based on 3 parameters

A. Constituents: What comes in the box, the real value of the product
B. Assimilation: How does this product goes down in your system, how much of it will your body assimilate
C. Usability : Long term usability and and effects.

I believe this is one of the best supplements available in the market today. The Question is Why?

1. The Quality of protein. Since its manufactured by Glanbia (who owns Optimum nutrition), this product is coming straight from the manufacturer. This is a BIG factor, 90% of the protein supplement companies source their raw materials from third parties, often importing them from third world countries.

100 grams of Whey protein isolate from one source is NOT equal to the 100 gram Whey protein isolate from another. Inferior resources usually have high level of Heavy metals and cattle Hormones. This has been elucidated from recent tests and published widely in the consumer reports. ON aced this report with minimum levels of such harmful residues. Reason is simple, they make their own whey in a plant which has to abide all regulations under US law.

Just for the point of reference. I am from India, and therefore know first hand how many poorly regulated cheese plants export their whey to Europe and US. So make sure your Whey protein is coming from Whey extracted in the US!!

The Additives

2. Ideally, I will prefer the protein powder with no artificial sweetener. But lets face it, such a product will be hard to sell. However, Golds whey keep artificial sweeter to minimum. If you check forums, lots of consumer complain that its not sweet enough. I request all such folks to realise that is actually good for them, if you feel this product is not sufficiently sweet for you. Its better you use lesser amount of hydrant (Milk, water, juice etc), or add a tiny bit of Honey.

The Profile- The Myth about Isolate vs a Blend

3. This might be hard for some people to digest. However, the truth is 96% people who use Whey supplements, will have no additional benefits of taking an Isolate vs a Blend. Please note, when I use the word blend, I mean a product lile Golds whey which is well balanced with Whey isolate and Whey Concentrate. (not any junk product form the market). If you take the blend, you might get 1 gram of extra fat or 2 grams of extra carbs which is absolutely nothing. You can burn this by adding 1.5 minute to your jog routine or walking for 2-3 minutes. You will get the same result and effect as the Isolate, so its not worth spending extra refined Isolate. The Isolate rumor is just a Hype created by the supplement industry. I will repeat this again, if your blend is as good as Golds whey i.e you are getting 24 grams per 30 gram scoop, you don't need an Isolate.

Who all comprise the 4% population who can benefit from an Isolate. First people who are extremely lactose Intolerant. I have used the word extremely since all good products add enzymes to digest the little amount of lactose residue in the supplement. Lactose is not a a bad thing, its simply the milk sugar. So if you are highly allergic to Lactose, Isolate will help (they have negligible levels of lactose)

Second tier of people who can benefit from Isolates are professional athletes who are pepping up for an upcoming competition. This competitive set is consuming 5-8+ scoops of Whey protein daily and therefore will benefit from reduction in additional fat or carbs.

4. Why go for Whey protein blend when you have specialized protein powders with Whey,egg and Casein.

Its simple science, Whey is just better with the best Biological value*. This means that your body will better absorb and use the protein source from Whey more than any other source, therefore no wastage. Egg is also a great resource, which is just behind Whey. However in real world it lags behind Whey substantially, even the delayed absorption rate cannot compensate much. Scientifically it has been proven that Whey is just better, since it doesn't tax your digestive processes as much as an egg protein.

Question of Casein:
Its true that Casein has an edge when it comes to delayed absorption. Its anti-catabolic properties and slow absorption makes it an ideal night time protein. This said, its best when you take Casein in concentrated from, i.e. if you need Casein, take only Caesin, do not mix it with Whey... Why do I say this, Its a big topic based on metabolism response(will add a different thread later). One last thing 24 grams of Whey protein is NOT equal to 24 grams of Casein as the Biological value of Casein is lower than Whey.However Caesin does have its own benifit of delayed response, provided you actually need it.

*Biological Value: Biological value (BV) is a measure of the proportion of absorbed protein from a food which becomes incorporated into the proteins of the organism's body.

Whey protein concentrate: 104
Whole egg: 100
Cow milk: 91
Beef: 80
Casein: 77
Soy: 74

Last Thoughts:
Always keep a note of how much protein you are consuming from Supplements Vs straight from the food. Ideally one should keep protein sources from supplements under 25%, but if your life style is demanding and you are unable to get hold of good meals rich in protein, you should always keep your protein dependency under 50%. In layman terms, for most of us who are looking for fitness, keep it not more than 2 scoops/day. For those who really pump some heavy Iron keep it upto than 3 scoops/day. (let me know if you wish to know the science behind this)

In the end Supplements are only Supplements. The word Supplement has a lot of Drama attached to it, as if, if you don't take a protein shake within 30 minutes of your work out.. you will never make good gain. Total Crap. This is not a make or break factor(its just beneficial). Baring few exceptions. Supplements adds up only 20 percent of your fitness equation.

In the real world, for over 90% of us. The fitness equation is something like this.

A Intensity and Regularity of Workout: 30- 35%
B Lifestyle and Nutritional Choices: 40- 50%
C Supplements : 0 - 20%

So the most important thing is to focus on A%B. Once you have maximized A and B, think about C
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Tracked by 61 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 341 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 31, 2011 2:32:46 PM PDT
D. Zhao says:
This is the greatest review I've ever seen.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 31, 2011 8:21:20 PM PDT
Sumer says:
Thanks D :)

Posted on Sep 1, 2011 12:28:41 PM PDT
Desi_Dude says:
Sam, great review indeed! Kudos to you!
few Q's :
1. Does it mix well and quickly (under a minute) in fat free milk? i use BF from walmart and it takes several minutes to mix even in plain water, and I like to add honey but it's already too sweet.
2. Is it ok to microwave the milk with Protein in it?
3. Is the natural flavor you mentioned less sweet, with no/little art. sweetners?
4. Is the tub BPA free ?
5. is there an expiry date once it is opened ?
6. is this mix ok with the breakfast: 1 cup FF milk, 1/2 cup egg white, 1 tblsp honey, 1/2 scoop whey ?
7. is it ok to add whey to hot milk along with a tea bag and sugar ?
8. the total weight of proteins/carbs/fats is always less than the weight of the powder, where does the diff come from?
9. where to find the amounts of Hg, Cd, Pb, As in each scoop ?

Thanks Again!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 1, 2011 7:07:02 PM PDT
Sumer says:
Hi There,

Good set of questions.

1. Yes it mixes very well in fat free milk. Its a very light protein, and you will hardly find any clumps. As a rule of thumb if you are mobile, the best way to make a shake is in a shaker. You can get a nice shaker for less than $2.99.

2. The best method is to warm the milk first and then mix it with protein. This is completely fine, however do not boil milk and protein shake. Protein is heat sensitive and if you boil it, it might even agglutinate. Nothing wrong in warming it, provided you warm the milk first.

3. Well, Optimum is pretty smart, the ingredients all natural but thy do have a naturally extracted compound- Rebaudioside added. Its not the best alternative, however its better than other synthetic artificial sweeteners. It is sufficiently sweet, additionally do note that if you use milk it will taste slightly less sweeter in comparison to water.

4. They do not specify this, but I don't think this should be an issue, since ON adhere to the new packaging guidelines under US fed laws. If you wish to verify this, only ON can give you an answer.

5. Yes, opened or not. The expiry is around 2-3 year.

6. Your breakfast combo is not nutritionally balanced. It should be 1 scoop Whey + 1 scoop Oats + 1 cup FF milk (you may add a dash of honey). You can also roast oasts and powder them and mix it whey and take it as a shake. Or, try Oats and Whey from ON

7. No, never make this concoction. Try to consume things in straight up

8. Its not the case buddy, a scoop is 30-32 grams, the protein is 24 grams + 5 grams Carbs + 1 gram fat = 30 grams, rest additives


In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2011 8:18:49 PM PDT
Desi_Dude says:
Thanks again for sharing your knowledge. but i am still confused on 8, the nutrition lable says 1 gm fat, 3 gm carb, 24gm protein, that makes a total of 28gm, while at the top it says total weight is 30.4gm, so where does the diff of 2.4 gm come from? Check out the nutrition lable pic in the upperf left corner of the product page.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2011 9:08:36 PM PDT
Sumer says:
Sure, the rest is the flavoring agent. If you research all the different flavors you will find that different flavors have different amount of flavoring additives. A chocolate will always have more than the vanilla. The amount is negligible, nonetheless the natural version is the best.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 4, 2011 2:46:29 PM PDT
Desi_Dude says:
I am almost decided on the "natural" but some people say it does not mix as well in milk as the double rich chocolate does. it that true? 3 out of 4 times I take whey, I mix it with milk. I use "shaker bottle with ball" at home but use regular ceramic or paper cups at work.

few grams of carbs, natural vs art. sweetners and taste are not my concerns but mix-ability with FF milk is very important to me.

so if the ""double rich choc" mixes in milk much better than "natural" then i will take the former. Please advise.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 4, 2011 7:50:26 PM PDT
Sumer says:
DD, As per my experience. I have never faced this challenge. Fitness is a tough game, if something mixes 90%, you should not worry. In my case, it has always mixed very well. One thing you can do is use a electric blender. Then there is no chance of any clumps.

Hope this helps.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2011 6:17:08 PM PDT
Sam, could you elaborate on what you said about the "no more than 2-3 scoop" rule? I'm 5'11, 185, 7% body fat.

Not looking to get massive, just maintain and be the healthiest I can.

Currently taking Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey, potentially terrible quality judging by the ultra low price. By buying this, am I basically just getting peace of mind in knowing that it's made according to better standards? Nutritional value seems fairly similar.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2011 11:33:09 PM PDT
Sumer says:

The reason its not considered healthy to consume majority of your protein from a supplement is because it works against you in the long term. The human body is designed to adapt very quickly to nutritional changes. A lot of biological processing take place in your digestive system to break down meat,eggs, milk etc to release amino acids. If one takes a lot of ready made predigested protein supplements, the body by passes a lot of internal biological mechanisms and as a result lose its ability to efficiently assimilate normal food sources in the long run. So lets assume your body can assimilate 70% of protein from the chicken breast you ate, this will reduce to 45% over a period time, because the body does not want to do the extra work since it is accustomed to get a readymade protein shot in a while.

This is very detrimental for a lot of folks, one of my gym mates who was consuming 5 scoops a day of whey for over a year now, lost over 10 pounds of muscle when he had to quit supplements abruptly as he developed an allergy to sucralose. He ate 2 times his protein need from natural sources but the body has long lost its ability...but not much help. Over a period of time the body will regain its ability but at the cost of 10-15 pounds of muscle. Now, every body reacts in a different way, but I guess one gets the overall picture. No one except you can be the right judge for your own body, however this is a crude example of the bio-mechanics.

The worst thing about supplements is that no matter which brand you buy you will have harmful additives. Your liver can manage only a limited level of toxicity, therefore depending primarily on protein supplement is not a good thing. Supplements work best if taken as supplements only.

Based on your stats, I will recommend taking not more than 3 scoops, but you may add BCAA (pure form) if you need it. Regarding Super Advance Whey protein, I think the protein quality looks good and loaded with some isolates as it has over 76% protein, however the additives this company is using are horrible (Natural And Artificial Flavors, Cellulose Gum, Soy Lecithin, Acesulfame Potassium, Sunflower Lecithin, Sucralose.).

Happy lifting
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