Hi there, I spent many years looking for a protein drink for CFS / ME.
Before that, for many years, I did not know such a thing existed. I wish I had!
My first experience of a protein shake was the Visalus protein drink which I took every day for some years.
However, some time ago I watched a health programme where an expert suggested that sucralose, one of the ingredients in the Vi Shake, was probably not suitable for consumption and has not yet been around long enough to be fully tested.
In its favour the manufacturer states that Visalus protein drink is
used by Olympic athletes.
Nonetheless, I stopped taking it.
The alternative I came across before that was the whey protein drinks made for weight lifters.
At the time I could only find them in huge tubs.
They were so expensive and it seems a big outlay when I didn't know if the protein drink would suit me.
Now I have found a cheaper and purer protein shake for CFS and ME peeps looking for an alternative.
In 2019 I read the book, The Metabolism Reset Diet by Dr Christianson and did the diet.
I learned from Dr C's book how to make a protein shake for CFS /ME from protein powder.
The following protein powders are available to buy:
Pea protein drinks are the best according to Dr Christianson.
There is more protein per amount of powder so Pea protein is more suitable if you are on a weight loss diet.
Plus pea protein has no strong taste, so if you want your protein drink for CFS to taste of the other ingredients you include, this may be preferred.
I know from my history with severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome that I am
vulnerable to food sensitivities.
I am no longer on a strict rotation diet, but I try to avoid eating any one food on every single day of the week.
For this reason I switch and use different protein powders.
I particularly love pumpkin seed protein powder.
Please know this is my variation on Dr C's recipes and is not approved!
I am in the UK and I buy organic protein powder online from DetoxTradingLtd
I recommend the company.
(This is my affiliate link tho I am unlikely to ever reach the payout threshold!).
Detox Trading post to the UK and parts of Europe, but probably not elsewhere.
In the UK, there is also a company Funktional foods which produces Hemp Protein Powder.
According to their website, you can buy it at most Tesco's, although I found it in The Range.
The problem is that the packets are small - 100g.
Dr Christianson's recommendation is 23g of protein mimimum per serving.
For pea protein this requires a serving of 50g.
So a packet is only good for 2 protein shakes.
However buying the small packets is an affordable way to see if you like the idea of using a powder as the basis for a protein drink for CFS. Tesco do home delivery if you are housebound or bedbound.
The amount of powder needed for your protein drink varies with the type and quality of protein powderyou use.
To make your calculation, you need to look at the protein content in the ingredients.
Below are the figures for the protein powders from Detox Trading. These are given on their website.
Pea protein powder Product information
A minimum of 80% protein content
For one protein shake Dr Christianson advises 20g of protein.
20 divided by 0.8 = 25g
You need about 25g of pea protein powder for one protein drink for CFS.
Hemp Protein Powder Product information
Nutritional info Per 100g
Protein – 48.3g
20 divided by .5 = 40g
For one protein drink for CFS Dr Christianson advises 20g of protein.
This means you need about 50g of Hemp protein powder per drink.
By providing this information for you, it has prompted me to see that it does work out quite a lot cheapter to use pea protein powder so I may cut down on using hemp protein!
This paragraph is only relevant if you have bought the book of the Metabolism Reset Diet (see link above).
Even if you don't do the diet, I recommend buying the book to get the 30 protein shake recipes.
These shake recipes in the book give you a good balance of the following:
Many of them are yummy too.
If you are looking for a protein drink for CFS / ME health management, the titles of the shakes may whet your appetite!
The following are only a sample of some of the protein shake recipes in Dr Christianson's book.
According to Dr C's guidelines, I believe these recipes may not have enough of what is called 'Resistant Starch' (RS).
I have listed them here so you can consider adding more RS.
Please know I'm not an
expert. But admin in facebook agree that some of these are lacking a portion of
Dr Christianson says that if you are using these as a protein drink for chronic illness, you can even add an extra serving of RS.
So if you are doing this as a CFS/ME diet, it makes sense to make sure you include enough Resistant Starch.
At the time of writing this, I am on the maintenance part of the reset diet.
This means I continue to have one protein drink for CFS / ME a day.
I add extra Resistant Starch to each of the above recipes.
I do wish I had known about protein drinks when I lived bedbound with severe CFS Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
It would have been so good to have something by the bed that I knew I could drink if a caregiver did not turn up to feed me.
If you are living with severe CFS / ME you could
just keep some powder in a beaker as an emergency meal.
You could add water when needed.
Or have an unopened long life milk or milk substitute nearby.
Without other ingredients, your protein drink for CFS won't be yummy .
It will also be powdery, especially if you are not well enough to shake it much. (Consider buying a little hand mixer.)
But at least it will be protein.
Before I read the excellent Metabolism Reset Diet book by Dr Christianson, I was just putting in a couple of spoonfuls of protein powder.
It turns out this is not enough protein and that the appropriate amount changes depending on the protein content of the protein powder you use.
As with all advice on this healing website, please make your own decision about taking a protein drink for CFS /ME.
I hope this is helpful :-)
Move to read my recommendations for a diet suitable when living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome-ME.