What Makes These The 10 Best Weight Loss Shakes?

best weight loss shakes

Throughout history, people have used different types of products to improve their bodies. In ancient Greece athletes were encouraged to eat large amounts of meat and drink copious amounts of wine to promote muscle growth. In the early 1900s, the first modern bodybuilders recommended “beef juice” or “beef extract” and egg-based protein powders.

Nowadays many folks are turning to weight loss and meal replacement shakes to help them maximize their health and fitness. Shakes, powders, and other dietary supplements have been continuing to grow in popularity and there is now a vast array of different products to choose from--thank goodness “beef extract” is no longer a popular supplement!

Weight loss and protein shakes have really hit the mainstream in the last half-decade or so, and it seems like there is a version formulated for just about everyone. With their varying range of flavors and benefits, it can be hard to pinpoint which exact option is the best for you and the specific results you want. In this article, I will break down the different types of shakes available, some of the best brands to buy from, their top rated products, and provide some weight loss shake reviews.

Best Weight Loss Shakes Comparison Table

Image

Product

Calories

Protein

Price

Rating

best weight loss shakes

Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard

110

24g

$$

best weight loss shakes

BSN Syntha-6

200

22g

$$

best weight loss shakes

Orgain

150

21g

$$

best weight loss shakes

Body Fortress

200

30g

$

best weight loss shakes

Muscle Milk Lean Protein

150

16g

$

best weight loss shakes

Pure Protein

150

25g

$

protein shakes to lose weight

Nature's Bounty Optimal Solutions

120

21g

$$

Almased

180

10g

$$$

best weight loss shakes

SlimQuick Pure Protein

60

10g

$$

best weight loss shakes

Isagenix IsaPro

100

18g

$$$$

Different Types of Weight Loss Shakes

With all the different products on the market, it can be hard to distinguish between the best weight loss shakes. Here I’ll break down the different categories of shakes in order to give you a better idea of exactly what you’re buying.

Whey Protein Shakes

This is the most common weight loss shake, perfect to drink before or after a workout or simply as a meal replacement. Whey protein weight loss shakes are often considered the gold standard in the market. These shakes are convenient and usually come at a low cost. These are also the products that usually have the best flavor. Whey protein has high levels of all the essential amino acids, which aid in muscle recovery, making a whey protein shake the ideal drink for after a hard workout.

Additionally, whey protein has actually been proven to be beneficial for people with depression, high blood pressure, diabetes, and even HIV and cancer. However, it is important to read the ingredients list when it comes to whey protein, because it often includes refined sugar for added flavor, which cancels out some of the healthiness of the shake in the first place. This type of protein is absorbed more quickly than other types, quickly affecting your muscles and making you feel full more rapidly.

Casein Protein Shakes

best weight loss shakes

Image Via Pixabay

Casein, or milk protein, is one of the three most common types of weight loss shakes on the market. An advantage to this type of protein is that it tends to be longer lasting and provides your body with a steady stream of amino acids for hours. Casein can also raise your metabolic rate, helping you to lose weight even when you’re not working out.

This type of protein also tends to fill you up for longer periods of time so you’re not tempted to snack or eat huge meals. Casein is great if you’re not only looking for weight loss, but for muscle growth--many bodybuilders swear by it, and scientific studies back it as well. One benefit that doesn’t necessarily concern weight loss but is still positive is that casein protein protects tooth enamel, so you can prevent yourself from having an unnecessarily expensive dental visit simply by consuming this weight loss shake on a regular basis. 

Soy Protein Shakes

best weight loss shakes

Image Via Pixabay

Soy is the last of the three most common types of weight loss shakes on the market. It comes from soybeans and is the only plant-based protein considered to be a high-quality protein, because it contains all the essential amino acids.

It also provides a respectable amount of potassium, zinc, iron, vitamin-E, and phosphorous as well as the full B-complex, which is great when you’re looking for a weight loss shake that will not only satiate your hunger, but also provide you with the proper nutrients.

Scientific studies have shown that soy protein has cholesterol-lowering effects. However, there are many scientific studies that make claims that consuming vast amounts of soy over a long period of time may actually hurt your health, so it may be a good idea to alternate this type of weight loss shake with others if you plan using them long term.  Also, with proven results in the gym soy products are often listed in the top protein powders for men.

Hemp, Rice, and Pea Protein Shakes

Known as “whey’s vegan alternative”, combining these three (or sometimes just rice and pea) proteins can give similar effects to the more popular protein sources. Pea and rice protein have the highest amount of protein and amino acids when it comes to plants. Products that feature these types of proteins are often marketed toward vegans, vegetarians, and people with other dietary limitations, such as lactose-intolerant or gluten-free consumers. These three proteins have proven that it is possible to be vegan, drink plant-based weight loss shakes, and find success while doing so.  This category also contains some of the most popular meal replacement shakes for women.

Best Brands of Weight Loss Shakes

Optimum Nutrition

This brand brags that it has the world’s best whey protein. They hold themselves to a Gold Standard and promise to provide the highest-quality products possible. The company, began back in 1986 by Mike and Tony Costello, provides top-of-the-line supplements in every category. The brothers felt that the field was lacking in consistent quality. They wanted to provide higher standards and produce products that did all they claimed to do.

Tim Wiegard, the Communications Coordinator for Optimum Nutrition, said, “The popularity of sports nutrition products is at an all-time high. This means that more and more people are reaching their goals with the help of various products. That's a positive development.” Overall, this is a trustworthy brand that has been solid over the years since it has been established.

JYM Supplement Science

This brand is backed by a doctor who makes sure that legitimate science goes into each and every product. Jim Stoppani, PhD and company founder, explains that “[w]ith JYM, you can rest assured that every product was created by a person with one of the most impressive resumes in the world of sports nutrition and exercise science and a person who has nothing but your best interest in mind.”

What attracts consumers to this brand is not only the fact that the products work--Jim Stoppani himself is an example--but also how sincere Jim is and how much he stands behind his products and makes sure that they are more than up to par. Also helpful is that even though many of his products are geared toward the male population, girls can also use them and there is even a girl blog on his website talking about the different struggles women face when working out and trying to lose weight.

BSN

BSN, or Bio-Engineered Supplements and Nutrition, Inc., was founded in 2001. The products and brand have won more than thirty-five awards over the last six years, beating out every other company in the industry during that time period. Their products are distributed in over ninety countries worldwide. They offer a diverse product line that is multi-functional and applicable to nearly every lifestyle and consumer type, and this sets them apart from other brands that target, for example, only bodybuilders. Their products aren’t just limited to protein, but also include pre-workout/energy, recovery/performance, and their DNA series. Their website even has different recipes you can make with their protein powder.

Top Five Weight Loss Shakes:

Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard

best weight loss shakes

You’ve already read about Optimum Nutrition as one of the top brands for weight loss shakes, so it should come as no surprise that one of their products is at the top of the leaderboard. Scoring 4.6 out of 5 stars, this protein powder comes in twenty-three different flavors and six different sizes, from 1.8 pounds to ten pounds, so there’s something for everyone!

You’re not just limited to the basic vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry, either--pick from flavors like cake batter, caramel toffee fudge, and even mocha cappuccino! Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard contains 24 grams of protein and plenty of essential amino acids to aid in muscle recovery after a workout. If you’re just using it as a meal replacement to aid in losing weight, don’t worry! The high amount of protein will help keep you full for hours. This is absolutely one of the best shakes for weight loss on the market.

BSN SYNTHA-6 Protein Powder

best weight loss shakes

Another product from one of our best brands! This protein powder comes in seven flavors and four sizes. It rates well on Amazon, scoring a 4.6 out of 5 stars. The 22 grams of protein in this shake will keep you full all day (read – best shake for weight loss), and it’s perfect to drink both before and after a workout--before to give you energy and stamina, and after to give your muscles the nutrients they need to repair.

BSN brags of the rich, creamy milkshake taste and texture of this shake, showing that it’s not going to be reminiscent of the traditional grainy protein shake. This product is also an excellent source of fiber and a nutritious and multi-functional supplement. If you’re looking to drink a weight loss shake for your general health, this could be your pick! It’s filled with necessary nutrients, but can also easily get you through a workout if need be.

Orgain Organic Protein Plant-Based Powder

best weight loss shakes

This organic product could be the best fit for someone who is limiting their diet to organic food or has other dietary restrictions. The product doesn’t contain dairy, lactose, soy, gluten, or GMOs. This really opens up the range of people that this product is available to. Although there are only two flavors, creamy chocolate fudge and vanilla bean, reviewers brag that it is the best-tasting organic protein powder they’ve ever had.

Their proprietary organic protein blend contains organic brown rice protein, organic chia seed, organic hemp protein, and organic pea protein, so even though you’re not getting whey, soy, or casein, you’re still reaping the benefits from a variety of protein sources. Orgain is designed to meet the needs of a broad number of consumers and is meant for not only athletes, but also busy professionals, moms on the go, and general weight management.

This powerful shake mix was designed by Andrew Abraham M.D. who is both a physician and a cancer survivor.

Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein Powder

best weight loss shakes

This product features 100% premium whey and 60 grams of protein per serving, which is by far the one of the largest amounts of protein I’ve seen thus far in a protein shake; usually it averages between 15-30 grams, so this mix is impressive. This protein powder is definitely meant for the more active consumer or for someone who is looking to bulk up and gain muscle.

There are four different flavors and the price is low compared to similar products. Combined with healthy eating and exercise, this product can lead to weight loss and muscle gains in little time. The amino acids it contains will help to support and heal your muscles after a long workout, and the insane amount of protein really fuels energy levels. Reviewers simply say that it tastes great and yields results.

CytoSport Muscle Milk Lean Muscle Protein Powder

best weight loss shakes

CytoSport explains, “When Muscle Milk was first introduced, we attempted to emulate human mother's milk, one of nature's most anabolic, complete and balanced foods. In doing that, Muscle Milk created a new category of protein products, while setting a new standard for both taste and performance. As a result, Muscle Milk has become America's favorite protein drink.”

An interesting concept turned into a real-life product, there is no shortage of acclaim for it, especially when it comes to the taste. Although a few Amazon reviewers complain about a slightly higher fat and sugar content, others argue that the amounts are absolutely reasonable and well within range for a healthy diet.

There are a wide variety of flavors of Muscle Milk available, so you won’t get bored with the same old vanilla shake day after day. Instead, try a flavor like cinnamon bun or peach mango! Muscle Milk isn’t only meant for bodybuilders, either. The manufacturer recommends it as a meal replacement too, which can definitely help with your weight loss goals or simply provide convenience when you need it.

Other Quality Weight Loss Shakes

Pure Protein 100% Whey Powder

25 grams of protein supports lean muscle and strength with a delicious vanilla cream flavor.

Nature’s Bounty Optimal Solutions Protein Shake  

With four flavors, this product supports energy metabolism with a range of B-vitamins, as well as electrolytes, omega-3s, and other vitamins.

Almased Multi Protein Powder

Although you’ll have to mix in your own flavor, Almased supports weight loss, optimal health, and maximum energy. Dig deeper by reading this Almased review.

Slimquick Pure Protein Powder

Designed specifically for women, this product claims to help you lose three times the weight with BioPure Green Tea as an active ingredient.  You can get all the fact in this review of SlimQuick.

Isagenix Isapro Supplemental Whey Protein

Intended to help with healthy aging, athletic performance, and losing weight.  Learn more in one of our favorite reviews on Isagenix.

Buying Guide for the Best Weight Loss Shakes

Top rated weight loss shakes will hit these sweet spots:

  • Type of protein - Depending on any dietary restrictions, you might want to stay away from specific types of protein. If you’re just starting out with protein or weight loss shakes, I would recommend whey. It’s the most common and there is a huge variety to choose from. Also, look at how much protein you’re getting per serving. You generally want at least 20 grams of protein in a shake in order to either serve as a meal replacement or get you through a workout.
  • Flavor -  You could buy the most expensive product with the highest amount of protein possible, but if you can’t stomach the flavor, it isn’t worth it. Check out the different flavors the product comes in and read reviews to see if they really taste as good as they sound. If the product is unflavored, take into consideration the fact that you’ll have to take extra time preparing it. If you’re a busy person and want to just throw the shake together and go, then an unflavored protein powder is not for you.
  • Price -  If you’re just starting out with protein powders and weight loss shakes, I wouldn’t recommend spending your life savings on a giant tub of protein powder. Start out small and gradually work it into your lifestyle if you like it. Additionally, check different vendors to see if you can get the same product at a lower price.
  • Sugar and fat content -  For some this is a big deal and for others it doesn’t matter so much. If you’re the type to stick to a very strict diet and limit the amount of sugar and fat you can consume, look into the nutrition facts of the product before you buy it.
  • Convenience - Is the shake easy and quick to put together? Can you take it with you on the go? You may want a protein drink for dinner or even a meal replacement shake for breakfast.
  • Results - Read the reviews on vendors’ websites. See if reviewers have used the product properly and achieved the kind of results you’re looking for. If the manufacturer’s claims aren’t true, you don’t want to purchase the product.

The video below will give you further information about protein powders from a man who has used them to lose weight himself.

Conclusion

As you can see, there is much more to weight loss shakes than first meets the eye: Types of protein, amounts of different ingredients, flavors, sizes, prices, and so much more! Remember that along with drinking these shakes, you should also be following a healthy diet and exercise regimen in order to see results! Hopefully with this in-depth look at our favorite weight loss shakes, you’ve gained some knowledge and now know which option is right for you, as well as what to look for if you’re still shopping around for the perfect fit.

Product images via their respective pages on Amazon.com

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