What Makes Premier Protein So Concerning

Protein might just qualify as the number one over-achiever of the nutrient world for all the benefits it brings to our bodies. According to Medline Plus, protein aids our systems in repairing cells and forming new ones and Healthline states diets high in protein boast all sorts of benefits including reduced hunger, increased muscle mass, and improved metabolism. So, of course, manufacturers would find a way to produce protein supplements and package them in convenient shakes and powders that can be enjoyed anywhere, anytime.

Premier Protein is one such company and they have legions of fans, for sure. The brand's chocolate protein shake has over 55,000 ratings on Amazon (90 percent of which are four and five stars), while their Vanilla Whey Protein Powder has over 9,000 reviews, the majority of which are five stars. Commenters seem to love the products for their flavor, the whopping 30 grams of protein one serving packs, and their super-low sugar content. The Premier Protein website (which also has a whole page dedicated to fans, AKA "Premier Shakers") lists all of their shakes and powders as containing just one gram of sugar. But, it's worth taking a look at what other ingredients these supplements contain that make them taste good enough to build such a following. To do that, Mashed spoke with Piper Gibson, AHND, TND, BCDNM, FDN-P, the holistic health and nutrition expert behind Regenerating Health. Her answers may make you reconsider whether Premier Protein is a worthy addition to your diet or not.

An artificial sweetener in Premier Protein can cause trouble

With tons of protein, a seemingly great taste, and almost no sugar, Premier Protein shakes and powders might seem like a great option as a nutritional supplement when you need one. But Gibson explained to Mashed, "Premier Protein boasts less than one gram of sugar; however, Acesulfame Potassium or "Ace K" is used as a substitute. Acesulfame Potassium is an FDA approved artificial sweetener that can increase your risk for brain damage." And, that's not all. Gibson goes on to say, "Acesulfame Potassium is considered an excitotoxin that can lead to migraines, seizures, infections, abnormal neural development, certain endocrine disorders, neuropsychiatric disorders, and learning disorders in children."

Understandably, the mere suggestion of possible brain damage may be enough to turn you off from Premier Protein, though we're not here to tell you to stop using it or what effect it will (or won't) have on you personally. While a lot of people clearly seem happy with the brand, if you're at a loss for where to source your extra grams of muscle-building, cell-regenerating protein now, fear not! Eggsoats, broccoli, quinoa, pumpkin seeds, peanuts, and a host of other natural foods are all good sources of protein (per Healthline). While some of these options may not be as convenient as protein shakes and powders, you might just sleep better knowing you can cross "potential artificial sweetener-induced migraines" off your list of worries for now.