Quest Protein Powder shake Review: Does it work?

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Expert rating: 2.7/5

Customer rating: stars-icon voted

Intro: What is it?

Quest Protein Powder shake is a meal replacement available in Cookies and Cream, Salted Caramel, Chocolate Milkshake, Vanilla Milkshake, Banana Cream, Strawberries & Cream, and a Multi-Purpose flavor. The company fails to add much information about what the benefits are of this shake, other than it’s meant to be a tasty shake mix.

The do add a video that mentions Quest supplements offer the full range of macronutrients. Though they don’t add many details about what their protein powder has to offer. It’s clear the company makes products they feel appeal to sweet tooth’s, but without any added sugar that spikes blood sugar. The company is known to produce low glycemic foods with artificial sweeteners. Is there any benefit to this brand? What kind of results can be expected? Read on to find out the truth about Quest Protein Powder.

Quest Protein Powder Ingredients

Here are the vanilla milkshake ingredients:

Whey Protein Isolate Micellar Casein Natural Flavors Cellulose Gum
Sunflower Lecithin Steviol Glycosides Salt Carrageenan

Some ingredients to look into:

Cellulose Gum: Thickener and emulsifier which are often added to processed foods, laxatives, toothpaste, and more. The International Weekly Journal of Science studied this ingredient and showed it could lead to:

low-grade inflammation and obesity/metabolic syndrome”

This means it could lead to an increased risk for obesity, damage to metabolism, and an increase in inflammation. Inflammation is typically only found when the body is recovering from a harmful additive.

Carrageenan: Extract of seaweeds used to stabilizer and thickener. It has been banned by the European Union for use in baby food. A Cancer Research group showed it could lead to:

“colorectal carcinogenosis”

It raised the risk for colon cancer in lab mice. Science Direct also performed a study which showed it could lead to:

ulceration in the large intestine”

Several clinical studies have linked this ingredient to the mentioned side effects. There is a bit of fiber provided by this ingredient, but its’ unknown what kind of effect it has since it’s only offered at less than one gram.

Sucralose: Sweetener that isn’t fully digested by the body. It’s almost 1,000 times sweeter than sucrose.  The American Diabetes Association released a study showing negative effects, it:

affects the glycemic and insulin responses”

The Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health also released a study showing negative effects including:

numerous adverse effects”

“increased fecal pH”

“reduction in beneficial fecal microflora”

Reduced gut bacteria can lead to many issues such as a lowered immune system health.  Also, it increased the amount of a protein that is released only when the body is combating a contaminant. Therefore, these clinical studies reveal that when introduced to the body, Sucralose is considered a harmful substance.

Macronutrients and Calories

Calories 100 Cholesterol 15mg, 5% Sodium 150mg, 6% Potassium 80mg, 2%
Total Carbohydrate 3g, 1% Dietary Fiber <1g, 3% Sugars <1g Protein 22g
Calcium 25% Iron 2% Magnesium 6% Phosphorus 15%


No calories come from fat; it’s a 100 calorie per serving protein drink. This is a low amount of calories.


There’s less than 1 gram of sugar that comes from Sucralose, an artificial sweetener. As mentioned before, this sweetener has been linked to many different issues including insulin and metabolism issues.  There is Steviol Glycosides as well which comes from the Stevia plant. This plant provides a sweet taste without adding any increase in blood sugar.


There’s less than one gram of fiber, this means any and all appetite suppression has to be left to the protein. Also, the quality of fiber comes only from thickeners which are often inside processed foods. This reduces the overall quality since it’s a cheap source that may potentially cause side effects.

The Quality of Quest’s protein

Each serving provides 22 grams of the following:

Whey Protein Isolate: Quick absorbing protein extracted from the cheese making process. It has all the amino acids, and it’s around 90% protein by weight. Usually Whey Isolate is mixed with Concentrate in order to provide both fast and low acting protein.

Micellar Casein:  Dairy protein extracts which is found in around 80% of the protein content in milk. It promotes a clot in the stomach, and it allows for a slow acting amino acid source. This form of protein is considered a generic ingredient, since it doesn’t reveal exactly what kind of protein is provided.

A Chinese study revealed that when taking 10% casein protein that it increases the risk for cancer. The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed it could lead to:

coronary heart disease (CHD)”

The same study also showed a risk in type 1 diabetes.

Since it’s mixed together, its unknown how much is the potentially damaging Micellar Casein, or the healthier Whey Protein Isolate.  Also, no explanation is provided as to what the exact amino acid profile is. This is important for determining how good of an effect it has for promoting lean muscle growth, as well as the overall quality of the protein.

The Price and Quality of Quest Protein Powder

2 pounds worth that provides 29 servings for $39.99. This amounts to a daily price for 2 shakes at:

$39.99/14.5= $2.75 a day for 2 shakes.

There’s a limited amount of micronutrients, and there’s not much fiber added. Also, the quality of the protein is mixed with one high quality source, and another potentially damaging protein.  Since the company fails to provide any benefits of what the protein powder has to offer, it’s unknown what the expected benefits are meant to be.

Micronutrient profile

The product has only the following micronutrients:

Iron: 2%

Calcium: 25%

Phosphorus: 15%

Magnesium 6%

There’s no addition of copper, selenium, b vitamins, vitamin A, C, D, E, K, and much more. It’s recommended by Web MD to get:

“a third of daily vitamins and minerals”

This is the standard set for the average decent meal replacement. Quest Protein Powder fails to provide a vast majority of the nutrients.

They also recommend getting:

“3-5 grams of fiber per serving”

This brand provides less than 1 gram. Therefore it lacks the nutritional profile to be a well-rounded meal replacement.  Even with 2 full servings this brand still fails to provide the proper nutritional profile.

It’s already considered expensive by many different customers, to not have the nutritional profile required for full satiety and for proper function, you have to spend money on other foods.

Without any mention of whether or not this brand is a meal replacement, it’s hard to determine what purpose this brand serves. Since it does have a lot of protein it might be considered a meal replacement, however there’s also a lack of essential minerals, so in either case it’s lacking as either an occasional supplement or as a full meal.

No explanation of benefits

The only claimed benefit of using Quest Protein Powder is that it provides a tasty mix of protein powders. No explanation is given as to if it has any weight loss benefits, or what the ratio of amino acids is.

They also fail to provide any information on what you can expect in terms of appetite suppression, or nutrient density.

Without knowing these key details, it’s unknown what kind of benefit is expected. It also makes it impossible to judge what others have gained, since there are no testimonials or clinical studies offered.

The only gain this brand is set to provide is a mix of sweet flavors. Though this comes through the addition of Sucralose, this has been linked to metabolism disorders and an increase in obesity.

The company does offer a brief description of each ingredient, though none of it is backed up by clinical studies.


Quest Nutrition LLC is known for their protein bars. The company can be reached through the following:

Phone Number: (888) 212-0601

Address: 2233 E El Segundo Blvd

El Segundo, 90245

The FDA sent them a warning for violating laws:

  • The FDA mentioned they made claims which are not verified. They claimed the companies chips were not healthy, even though the company claimed it was. The company responded back by trying to appeal the judgment, claiming that it was healthy. It’s unknown what has been done since then.

Customer Opinions

Multiple reviews are available on

“not healthy at all”

“most expensive protein powder out there”

“Bad taste and clumps up”

“Blegh. Not food-too fake sweet”

People who reviewed the ingredients disliked the addition of the artificial sweetener Sucralose. There were also many complaints about the lack of consistency, and there are negative reports about the taste. People mentioned they didn’t feel like it mixed well, and that it had a medicinal and artificial taste.


Some key points to consider about Quest Protein Powder:

  • There’s artificial and less than optimal ingredients included: Sucralose, Cellulose Gum, and Carrageenan have been shown to produce side effects in numerous clinical studies. These same reports mention there’s a possibility for it damaging metabolism and increasing blood sugar. This can potentially lead to an increased risk for obesity. Combining these 3 additives together has not been tested, therefore it’s unknown what kind of an effect it may have. These ingredients are also cheap substitutes for more wholesome ingredients. The company claims these additives are healthy, but they fail to cite any clinical studies to prove this.
  • Customers have complained about the taste and quality: People mention that even with the added stabilizers that the consistency is chalky and hard to drink. There are also reports that there’s an artificial after taste. People also didn’t appreciate the addition of Sucralose, which has been linked to numerous side effects. People who understood the ingredients label mentioned they didn’t feel like it was worth the expensive price tag.  Some of the common complaints are about the medicinal and artificial taste.
  • The company fails to provide any information about the benefits: The only claimed benefit of using these products is that they offer multiple ranging flavors. There’s no mention of any clinical studies or proof of weight loss. They also fail to mention what kind of effect it may have on the body in any form. Without knowing these details, there’s no way to understand what the intended results are. It also makes it impossible to determine what you can expect.
  • It’s expensive for what you’re getting: At $39.99 for just 14.5 servings if you take 2 shakes a day, there should be more nutrients provided. The product has very few ingredients, and most of them are flavorings and stabilizers. Only 2 of them provide protein, and one provides fat. The others are simple additives which may produce unwanted effects.  This means that you don’t get the full benefits of a meal replacement. It’s pricy at this point, since it means you have to supplement with other foods in order to make up for the lack of nutrients.
  • There’s a lack of important nutrients: This brand cannot be considered a proper meal replacement since it’s lacking many key nutrients. There’s a negligible amount of calcium and phosphorus. There’s less than 10% of potassium, iron, magnesium, and sodium. No vitamin A, B, C, D, E or other minerals are included. This requires extra supplementation with other vitamin sources causing a further increase in the overall price. Also, without these key nutrients it might be hard to supplement with whole foods due to the high protein. At 22 grams it might lead to appetite suppression which makes it hard to get your daily dose of nutrients.

Not much information is provided by the manufactures. There’s a lack of key nutrients and much of the ingredients are commonly found in other protein shakes. Customers have complained about the artificial sweetener, and the overall lack of quality for the price. There’s also been concern over the taste and lack of consistency.  Clinical studies have shown that some of the additives can potentially cause damage and increase the risk for obesity.

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