So it’s independence day which seems like a fitting day to write something about science in America.  My flatmate, a biker has been drinking this “muscle building” protein powder….

Protein Protein powder? I think you mean milkshake.

I tried some myself and we were both very surprised by the great tasting chocolate goodness (OK OK it tasted foul, just a bit less foul than the standard)… so we decided to check the label.

DSC013791 Protein powder? I think you mean milkshake.

Upon closer inspection you can see that this “protein powder” actually has massively more sugar and nearly as much fat, over half of which is saturated fat as there is protein. You’d probably be better off eating a dohnut wrapped in Bacon*, well it’d certainly taste better.

baconwrappedappleciderdonuts Protein powder? I think you mean milkshake.

Admittedly, this was found only a few miles down the road from the town that made Jamie Oliver cry because the kids were so fat.

Jamie Oliver crying Protein powder? I think you mean milkshake.

One of the biggest problems America is having at the moment as you probably have heard is combating the bumper-belly causing “high fructose corn syrup“. The cause of this is mostly political – the goverment over here has dumped about $40 Billion of funding into it’s production (because corn is a cash crop and a simple manipulation makes it in to a preservative) so now it’s in literally everything, but you can learn about that yourself if you are so inclined, so how to spot it in the UK….

In the UK it’s labelled maize-syrup or glucose-fructose. Thankfully for us Brits the US are smart enough not to include it in their UK exports, (presumably because they believe we’re a bit more health conscious across the pond) but some products sneak it in. You probably want to steer clear.

*Okay you probably wouldn’t be better off eating a donut wrapped in bacon, but there again you sure as hell wouldn’t buy a doughnut wrapped in bacon as part of a body building regime.

**Apologies and congratulations to all the Americans that aren’t fat, it’s not at all easy to be healthy here

If you have any stories on shockingly bad protein powders and supplements, send them my way via or leave a comment.

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