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protein shakes?

okay...eggs for breakfast are too much for me! it's also VERY hard for me to get 30g protein right when i wake up. can i use protein shakes in the morning for breakfast? if so, what ones can i use? thanks guys!


The Best Answer

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As stated above there is a lot of argument over this, which is why I say the best thing as an individual is to test it yourself. Do some of your own "Body Hacking." I am a big supporter of that part of Tim Ferriss thesis on body composition. Remember the Slow Carb Diet is what worked best for him, and will work well for a lot of people, but that doesn't mean everyone's bodies are the same.

I myself use a Whey Shake (Yes Whey, not Casein) every morning to start my day. I get 50g of Protein and heaven forbid it even has some artificial sweetener in it. The point I am making with this is that you really won't know unless you are willing to experiment and find out. Try it for 2 weeks and see if you lose weight. If you do then you know you can use it. Yes you might lose weight faster eating actual food, but the overall point is to lose weight period.

My only advice with a Whey Shake is to not eat anything with it, just have the shake alone and then wait until your next meal to eat. (It is true that Whey can cause an insulin spike, so it is best to not have the excess calories combine with it to end up storing in your body)

I personally choose Whey over Casein because of its many other important properties, especially cancer fighting properties. That is my own personal choice after reading a ton of science journals. You could try any of the other types of protein as well.

  • Brittany Brown commented Dec 9th 2012:

    I couldn't take anymore eggs and beans for breakfast so I switched to PLAIN oatmeal - the canister kind that the only ingredient is rolled oats with nothing else added - and a 25g whey protein powder shake - make it with ice and water and I have just reached my goal of 73 pounds lost today. I don't think just protein shake is enough to get you to lunch so try oatmeal or if you still like them - beans, but get a low sugar carb whey protein

All Answers


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There's several other questions already answered about this topic. Here's one http://4hourpeople.com/question/2457/protein-shakes-yes-or-no-if-ye...


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This seems to generate controversy around here...

I was diligent about spinach and eggs in the mornings for the first two weeks, but I just could not get comfortable with it and felt nausea in the mornings, not good before a morning work out.

Here is what I migrated to, and it has worked wonders (and can generally travel with it):

20 grams hemp protein (no flavoring, of course)

8 oz plain almond milk (about 4-5 grams of protein)

1 raw egg (about 6 grams of protein)

1 scoop of powdered "greens" - pick your favorite brand

A bunch of cinnamon

1 Starbucks instant coffee serving

Shake by hand, guzzle in 10 swallows. All done within 15 mins of waking up.

This has been the key tweak to the SCD that has made my awesome success possible.


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Protein shakes are fine- Tim recommends (and his dad used) Whey protein Isolate (that is if you cgo the protein shake route). it has a much higher protein percent than any other protein and is lower in cholesterol and fat than regular Whey. I recommend getting the unflavored and adding your own flavor- good ones are - raw cacao, vanilla, cinnamon, stevia, Cardamom, etc.

  • Juan Pinillos commented Jan 7th 2013:

    I've been using unflavored WPI with good success and it helped me break through a stall! My favorite mix so far is just adding instant coffee and some saigon cinnamon and it makes it taste like a cold coffee drink


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I had the same problem so now I eat a cold chicken breast with 30g of protein. Fills me up but at least its low cal and no sugar.

  • Now.Or.Never commented Feb 24th 2012:

    Yep, I hate eggs. I end up eating pure meat.

  • Dawn George commented Dec 6th 2012:

    are you weighing your meat? How many oz is equal grams of protein of all meats?



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That is what I have been doing due to the fact that I get up so early in the morning. Everyone keeps saying that it is not ideal and that it does not fill you up. I have only been on SCD for four days now, it is too early to see if I am getting any results, but I have to admitt, that my protein shake leaves me starving in the morning!!! I wake up with NO DESIRE TO EAT, and thirty minutes after the shake I am starving!!

  • Jeremy Jones commented Oct 8th 2011:

    What kind of shake are you drinking? I do casein, plus eat a hard boiled egg, and I'm not at all hungry, even when breakfast 2 rolls around 6 hours later.


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I do protein shakes daily with good results. Seriously, it's just impossible for me to start my day with 30+ grams of protein any other way. I have a pretty strict routine to get my shit done in the morning, and with some help from folks on this site I've decided protein shakes -- regardless of the potential downsides -- just work for me and my schedule. I have 1/2 hour between the time I get up and starting my first job at 2am (kid needs braces, after all...), so you're not gonna find me scrambling 4 eggs and sipping a cup of coffee with the paper in my lap. I prepare some coffee the night before, mix in a scoop of casein shake (25g of protein) and chill it until I get up at 1:30 and chug. That and a hard boiled egg holds me over 'til I get home, wake up the rest of the family, and cook the real breakfast (another 30g of protein in eggs and sausage) at 7:30.

Necessity is the mother of invention. Take stock of your goals, what you think you can stomach, and your finances (hemp seed ain't cheap...), and that'll dictate the proper plan. Mine involved the cheap casein protein you buy at WalMart, and I can see the results.

  • MomaMia commented Oct 9th 2011:

    Thanks Jeromy I am drinking Isopure everymorning. I chose it because of the low calories, low carbs and it is sugar free. I am drinking the Dutch chocolate flavor. It is actually really good. I feel like it is the only way to get 30 grams of protein in the morning also. I am no longer starving. It was a bad first two days but now it is going great. I have seen the weight coming off even in week one. I will keep using the protein shakes they seem to be working great.


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I have been having 15grams protein shake upon waking, and 30-60 minutes later, a proper meal including eggs and fiber. I have been losing 1 kilo per week.

I stopped the 15grams protein shake this week just to test if I lose some more weight (due to no sweetener)

Also, if you think eggs are WAY TOO MUCH, then try the ghee tip Tim's gave on his book, eggs fried with ghee is just AWESOME!



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Isopure makes a zero carb whey protein isolate shake that is not bad and can be mixed with water which contains 50g of protein. On days when I don't feel like eating, that's what I take, but I will say I am hungry much earlier than normal if I do (those are 2 lunch days for me). I just started recently making protein "pudding" (you can also purchase protein pudding but I like mine better) using unsweetened, unflavored almond milk, unflavored protein powder, chia seeds, vanilla extract and vanilla stevia extract. Basically, I shake 6-8 oz. almond milk, a scoop of protein powder, 3 tbs white chia seeds and about 1 tsp vanilla extract and a few drops of stevia extract (sweetness to taste) together and refrigerate overnight. The chia seeds expand and get a jelly like coating on them making them almost like a slightly crunchy tapioca. One serving and I stay full for hours......


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Great answeres here already on protein shakes being OK to use, particularly for the 30/30 rule.

A quick few tips:

+ unflavored protein powder is preferred as it ensures there is no sugar, stevia, agave and other sweeteners that can delay progress

+ all proteins sources are not equal. Egg white powdered protein is one that comes highly recommended. One such source is http://www.jayrobb.com/protein/egg-white-protein-unflavored.asp I realize the last thing desired is another egg, however, in powder format it will get the results and not have the egg taste.

+ if egg protein powders are not desired or do not fit the budget, the protein powder recommended in the latest book, the 4 Hour Chef, is http://www.amazon.com/Foods-Whey-Protein-Isolate-Packaging/dp/B0015...

Best of success.



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I'm in my second week of protein-drink-only (almost):

1 scoop Jay Robb Whey Protein Isolate (unflavored) - 26g protein


2 Tbsp almond butter - 7g protein

I just stir the powder in water and drink it. Then, eat the almond butter off of a spoon.

I just ordered 2 lbs of Hydrolyzed Whey Protein High Grade (unflavored, unsweetened) from True Nutrition, which offers 23g protein, 1g carbs, 0g sugar. I chose this one over the higher percentage protein powders they have hoping the hydrolyzed will digest faster. I plan to get a scoop that will give me the 30g protein and ditch the almond butter.

I have a couple of major factors driving me to do this over just eating a slow-carb meal. First, and probably common to most people, I have so much to do getting myself ready and getting kids out the door for school I was finding it very difficult to get a meal down inside of that golden 30 minutes. Second, I'm severely allergic to eggs, which eliminates any and all kinds of eggs from my diet. I thought I would try the protein-drink-only method.

It's only been a week, but my fat-loss has slowed from when I was wolfing down the slow-carb meal, which was ground turkey, spinach, and black beans. I've been flawless in all my other meals through each week.

So, is the protein-drink-only breakfast not as effective as a whole food slow-carb breakfast? Perhaps, but as most would probably agree, it's probably very dependent on the individual, which is why I will continue to experiment with it.

What's frustrating is that Tim doesn't go into more detail about this. I know I read somewhere once that he said whole food is better than protein drinks. Can't seem to find it anymore. But why? As many 4HB readers cite, his own father had success with protein drinks for breakfast.

Why are protein drinks for breakfast not ideal?

If anyone can answer that for me, it would be greatly appreciated.

  • Jeffrey F commented Jan 31st 2013:

    Jason, congratulations on your success. From my own experience, I would suggest Jay Robb Egg White Protein (non-flavored). Also, I would consider not having almond butter as it can slow down weight loss.


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I have been making a shake every morning with hemp hearts protein (digests and absorbs much better- can be bought on Amazon) along with ground Chia Seeds (gives huge boost of energy- also can be bought on Amazon or at Trader Joes) along with a bannana, peanut butter, and almond milk. After reading 4HB I will try cutting out the fruit, but what about the ALMOND MILK. Tim only mentioned regular and soy milk as being bad...?

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