"Approximately 75 percent of protein powders had measurable levels of lead." Stunned? Us too. If you're a protein-powder junkie, it might be time to reassess — especially if you use a plant-based blend.
Clean Label Project, the national nonprofit focused on health and transparency in product labeling, just completed a study of 134 of the top-selling protein powders in North America. Using a "third-party, independent analytical chemistry laboratory," the group found that nearly half of the powders had "significant amounts" of "lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic, and BPA." Holy sh*t is right.
One of the most eye-opening findings was that plant-based protein powders are actually more toxic than whey- or milk-protein powders, with plant-based containing "on average twice the amount of lead per serving," in addition to more "mercury, cadmium, and arsenic . . . in several cases above health-based guidelines."
And if you thought you were safe with a "certified organic" powder, think again: "Certified organic products averaged twice as much heavy metals."
The safest bet? Anything egg-based. Apparently those were the cleanest/safest of the tested bunch. You can look through the list Clean Label Project shared with POPSUGAR, but here's the gist of the best and worst:
Best, Safest Powders (least contaminants, highest nutrition)
- Body Fortress
- Pure Protein
Worst Powders (most contaminants, least nutrition)
- Nature's Best
- Garden of Life