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  #1  
Unread 04-09-2019, 02:45 PM
eattoshred's Avatar
eattoshred eattoshred is offline
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Default Optimum Nutrition whey protein side effects

I have been taking ONs gold standard whey protein (chocolate) off and on, for years. Recently I have noticed some occasional heart palpitations, lightheadedness, trouble recovering in between sets catching my breath, mixture of symptoms similar to anxiety. Enough to really scare me.
Coincidentally I have taken a scoop of ON Whey immediately before most workouts, and in the last week, started taking 2 scoops before workouts, which helped bring to light what could be going on. I feel that some ingredient in the protein is causing the above symptoms. I deliberately stopped taking this whey 3 days ago and yesterday's workout was significantly improved with 0 symptoms. I know I should guinea pig this hypothesis and take 2 scoops before workout in a week or so to confirm the symptoms reappear but those symptoms are not fun

I have researched each ingredient in the protein supplement to determine what may be the culprit, but have not had much luck with any scholarly research articles, only anecdotal evidence. the only unknown is the "Natural and Artificial Flavors" which I would need to contact ON to learn the "sauce".

Sucralose seems to be the only potentially likely ingredient that my body isn't liking but again there is no clinical evidence to support the described symptoms. Of course I realize that prove innocence if only demonstrated outside clinical trials.

Has anyone experienced anything similar with this a protein product? Any hints at what ingredient might be causing the symptoms that I may have missed or overlooked? I would like to learn more as to what may be going on to avoid this in the future and of course purchase a protein that doesn't contain the troubling ingredient.

Yes, over the past 2 years, I have been to the Dr, had multiple EKGs, stress echo test, nuclear heart scan, and all results look good.

I am male, 37 years old.

product:
https://www.optimumnutrition.com/en-...ndard-100-whey

Anecdotal(more all over the internet):
https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showt...6852601&page=1
https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showt...1927913&page=1
https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showt...1689733&page=1


Ingredients:
Protein Blend (Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate, Whey Peptides)

Cocoa (Processed with Alkali)

Natural and Artificial Flavors

Lecithin

Creamer (Sunflower Oil, Maltodextrin, Modified Food Starch, Dipotassium Phosphate,Tricalcium Phosphate,Tocopherols)

Salt

Acesulfame Potassium

Aminogen

Sucralose
N=1 sucralose causing afib
http://www.afibbers.org/resources/journeys/Pisano.pdf

Lactase
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  #2  
Unread 04-10-2019, 03:23 AM
MrSkinnyFat MrSkinnyFat is offline
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I get headaches when i take this as a standalone source of meal. Culprit i think is hypoglycemia as whey isolate is the lead ingredient and my understanding is that it could be pretty insulinogenic and those with sensitivities will of course will feel those sides.
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  #3  
Unread 04-10-2019, 08:23 AM
eattoshred's Avatar
eattoshred eattoshred is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSkinnyFat View Post
I get headaches when i take this as a standalone source of meal. Culprit i think is hypoglycemia as whey isolate is the lead ingredient and my understanding is that it could be pretty insulinogenic and those with sensitivities will of course will feel those sides.
Thanks for the reply, however I am not hypoglycemic, despite whey protein being my sole meal during my mid morning workout days. Also because whey protein is insulinogenic(I am not diabetic), the amino acids would actually reverse any hypoglycemic symptoms, which is definitely not the case in my experience.

Side notes:
-To clarify in my OP, the symptoms I am experiencing are during weight training.
-If I eat a Pure Protein Bar, I seem to be symptom free during workouts.https://www.nutritionexpress.com/pro...p+12+bars.aspx

The ingredients in the ON whey that are NOT in the pure protein bar are(possible culprits):

Whey Peptides
Sunflower Oil
Modified Food Starch
Dipotassium Phosphate
Tricalcium Phosphate
Tocopherols
Acesulfame Potassium
Aminogen
Lactase
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  #4  
Unread 04-10-2019, 10:24 AM
MrSkinnyFat MrSkinnyFat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eattoshred View Post
Thanks for the reply, however I am not hypoglycemic, despite whey protein being my sole meal during my mid morning workout days. Also because whey protein is insulinogenic(I am not diabetic), the amino acids would actually reverse any hypoglycemic symptoms, which is definitely not the case in my experience.

Side notes:
-To clarify in my OP, the symptoms I am experiencing are during weight training.
-If I eat a Pure Protein Bar, I seem to be symptom free during workouts.https://www.nutritionexpress.com/pro...p+12+bars.aspx

The ingredients in the ON whey that are NOT in the pure protein bar are(possible culprits):

Whey Peptides
Sunflower Oil
Modified Food Starch
Dipotassium Phosphate
Tricalcium Phosphate
Tocopherols
Acesulfame Potassium
Aminogen
Lactase

I can only speak for myself, but I had what appeared to be reactive hypoglycemia.
Im guessing the whey isolate triggers a high insulin response and with the speed of how quickly that gets digested...the amount of cals in relation to which is 2 scoops.

I think there was a study on this right around training on healthy subjects that had these responses. Ill see if i can find it...

Yes you dont have this based on your reply...though the symptoms you are experiencing/that you posted do tie in with i experienced before.

Have you tried to test with another whey isolate under the exact same condition? A pure protein bar has fiber/fat which will slow digestion down
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  #5  
Unread 04-10-2019, 11:17 AM
eattoshred's Avatar
eattoshred eattoshred is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSkinnyFat View Post
I think there was a study on this right around training on healthy subjects that had these responses. Ill see if i can find it...

Yes you dont have this based on your reply...though the symptoms you are experiencing/that you posted do tie in with i experienced before.

Have you tried to test with another whey isolate under the exact same condition? A pure protein bar has fiber/fat which will slow digestion down
Is this possibly the study you are referring to?
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...MC3662597/#B13


Quote:
effects including dizziness, nausea, headache, and shortness of breath in 44% (n = 4 of 9) of this group’s participants. However, 44% (n = 4 of 9) of participants taking the placebo also experienced side effects of nausea and shortness of breath. Interestingly, the authors did not report BP or HR data, which may be important given these side effects and media reports portraying these pre- and post-RT products as dangerous.
I failed to mention that I mix my protein drinks with ~1-2cups skim milk. So 12-24 g carbs in addition to the ON protein.

I also emailed ON to learn more about the amts of sucralose as well as what composes the "Natural and Artificial Flavors", and a couple other questions. Hopefully I get a semi-helpful response from them.

Last edited by eattoshred : 04-10-2019 at 11:19 AM.
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  #6  
Unread 04-10-2019, 11:52 AM
MrSkinnyFat MrSkinnyFat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eattoshred View Post
Is this possibly the study you are referring to?
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...MC3662597/#B13




I failed to mention that I mix my protein drinks with ~1-2cups skim milk. So 12-24 g carbs in addition to the ON protein.

I also emailed ON to learn more about the amts of sucralose as well as what composes the "Natural and Artificial Flavors", and a couple other questions. Hopefully I get a semi-helpful response from them.
The study that im trying to remember had a graph that showed 60 min before and after comparing the effects of whey vs one of the milk proteins that plotted the plasma insulin concentration response solely to taking protein only.

On the RFL/ERFL i used to add yogurt/fat and some fiber to slow gastric emptying. That helped alot.

Now I use ONs Casein with no effects either alone or with fat/fiber.


I would add some fat/fiber to the whey and see how you fare as one last shot. Your issue may not be reactive hypoglycemia but id test it out. At least you are questioning ON about it
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  #7  
Unread 04-10-2019, 01:26 PM
Fatty McFatso Fatty McFatso is offline
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Try straight EAAs and see if it has the same effect as the whey.
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  #8  
Unread 04-11-2019, 09:17 AM
skywalkr skywalkr is offline
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I have had similar issues with sucralose, I switched to a stevia sweetened protein and the issues went away. Pure anecdote but my dad also had issues with heart palpitations and sucralose.
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  #9  
Unread 04-11-2019, 07:05 PM
holly70 holly70 is offline
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Well that was quite the rabbit hole.

Used ON daily in 2012. Dropped powders completely for some time and when I tried starting again I couldn't tolerate ON anymore. Got a rec from a lady in a FB lifters group that was kind of pricey from GNC, but I liked it.

Went to try and find it for you and looks like it is gone now.

Choices seem pretty limited if you are a picky PITA like me. I can deal with limited sucralose if I have to, but AceK and stevia are super gross.

This was the only thing I found that didn't have any of those three:
https://www.vitaminshoppe.com/p/natu...hoCMssQAvD_BwE

And there might be something to the blood sugar thing. Or not.

Just that the second time I tried using a protein I found that on days I used it I seemed to be hungrier and ended up eating more...like it triggered a blood sugar swing. That was why I ditched it.

Could just be I'm sensitive to that since eating earlier in the day vs. waiting until 11 AM or later also seems to get me hungrier and I end up eating more.
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