TwinLab provided product for review purposes, all opinions 100% my own. Post may contain affiliate links.
Whey protein has become a staple in my diet since living a healthier lifestyle. I incorporate it into smoothies, oatmeal, baked goods or just add to a glass of milk.
Sure, real food sources such as eggs, egg whites, Greek yogurt, lean protein such as turkey and chicken and beans are my first source of protein, but after training hard I need more to repair my muscles, which is where whey protein comes into my life.
When I first started my journey I believed all whey protein powders were created equal, boy was I wrong. A few months in I started reading ingredient labels and was shocked at what some of these had in them. I found a Natural Whey Protein I loved with minimal ingredients that used Stevia and have been using that for months now. But I really did want more. Recently I’ve been searching for non-gmo whey protein powders so when TwinLab reached out for me to review their Whey Protein Isolate from the new CleanSeries line, I was ecstatic. It had everything I wanted in a whey protein…
No artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners
Short ingredient label
Low in sugar
High in protein
No chalky taste
The CleanSeries line of sports supplements just recently launched with each of the products in the line having impressive claims:
-Independently certified by the NSF® International product certification program to verify products meet nutrient label claims
-Certified Gluten Free by NSF®
-Non-GMO tested by an independent third-party lab using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing for genetically modified DNA to a limit of 0.9%
-Batch tested by HFL for banned substances in accordance with HFL’s Informed Choice and Informed Sport programs
So what does this mean to me? It means we as consumers that are looking to supplement can now do so with products that offer high performance and standards. We as consumers CAN trust this line of products.
TwinLab CleanSeries Non-GMO Whey Protein Isolate Vanilla Wave
There are currently five products, like I said I tested the Whey Protein Isolate in vanilla wave flavor. This is a premium cross flow, ultra filtered whey isolate. Each serving (1 scoop) delivers 110 calories, 23 grams of protein, only 2 grams of sugars, 4 grams carbs and no fat. Using this whey protein isolate pre or post-workout will help repair muscles and aids in recovery. I appreciate that this is a low glycemic index powder, meaning this is easily digestible.
This has a very mild vanilla flavor, but what I like most is it doesn’t taste fake, or sugary. Just a natural vanilla flavor like it should, that isn’t chalky. The powder also absorbs quickly when added to water or milk or while blending with fruit. Like I stated at the beginning I mix with oatmeal for a protein boost, and this mixes in well without clumps.
I’m am very pleased with this whey protein isolate. It will now become the staple protein powder in my home. It is pricier than others on the market, but remember this is non-GMO and offers high standards without added junk. The ingredient label looks like this:
Plus there is a ton of essential amino acids and no wheat, fish or egg added and no yeast or starch ingredients.
So far I’ve made a ton of oatmeal and smoothies like my high fiber green smoothie with the powder. Today I’m going to share a pumpkin recipe using the whey protein isolate. It’s fall so pumpkin is in!
These protein pumpkin pancakes are delicious, you would never know a scoop of protein powder was in these if I didn’t tell ya. Enjoy! (Recipe below)
Interview with Celebrity Fitness Trainer Joel Harper
I was able to interview the official spokesperson for the CleanSeries line of products, celebrity fitness trainer and Dr. Oz’s personal trainer, Joel Harper. Joel kindly took a few minutes out of his busy day to answer a few questions for me.
1. The CleanSeries line has everything you could want in a supplement line (low in sugar, low in fat, high in protein and carbohydrates, GMO free), but why do we need so many different products and if we as consumers can only afford just one supplement which should we choose?
CleanSeries is actually extremely simple. The product line is not designed to be used in entirety by a single person — in other words, you don’t need Whey Isolate, and the Sport protein, and the Veggie Protein, and the Soy Protein Isolate, and the new Gainers 600 formula in addition to our Pre-Workout Activator. Instead, choose the one protein that’s right for you, then add the Pre-Workout Activator for added energy and fatigue delay. So why are there so many protein choices? The market is really specialized and it’s based on the specific benefits you’re looking for. Whey Protein Isolate is our premium, and fastest absorbing product. Sport Protein is a great tasting staged release protein which means it contains different sources of protein that release over time delivering more of a feeling of fullness, but also a few more calories than the Isolate. The Veggie Protein is a blend of several different vegetable protein sources and is vegan.com certified, while the Soy Protein is also for vegans. Our new Gainers 600 formula, as the name implies, is formulated to deliver a high calorie (600 as a matter of fact!), high protein profile for the athlete looking to put on muscle mass vs. just support their diet or grow lean muscle. CleanSeries will grow into new areas other than proteins and pre-workouts, but for now, the choice is really simple.
2. I have lost almost 35 lbs since January. I am left with the dreaded excess skin on my lower belly. What exercises if any help strengthen and tighten this more when I can no longer lose anymore weight?
Whenever you exercise you always want to wear this belt on top of your t-shirt. It helps you monitor your stomach. Lots of my clients think they are activating their core while they exercise, but they are mistaken. This helps you feel when you are and when you are not. Here are some great exercises with 3 levels from beginner to advanced http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/joel-harpers-abs-workout You want to work your abs from every single angle with a variety of exercises. Mixing it up each time.
3. What are the best foods to eat after a workout? Top 3 snack foods?
You want to get protein into your body within 30 minutes. I opt for a Clean Series protein shake with flax milk and a banana, 3 egg whites or a protein bar when I am in a hurry. My 3 favorite snack foods are carrots and hummus, apple or banana and Nuttzo, and sea veggies.
4. Time seems to be an option for many busy men and women. If we only have 15 minutes for a workout what move or moves are most effective for that short of time to burn the most calories?
You want to pick a different body part and work it from every angle. So Legs for 15 minutes, next day chest… and go through your whole body. Or you can do very efficient exercises that use multiple muscles simultaneously. Here are 2 examples: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYHJxEPy5LM and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWmiWC-qJv4
5. There is an overwhelming amount of protein bars on the market. They make for a quick snack pre or post workout, but how do we know which one’s to choose and which one’s are junk?
Like many segments in the nutrition industry, there are a lot of choices and it’s tough to determine what’s right for you. Most bars do a good job today of calling out their key nutritional information on the front…is it high in protein? Fiber? Is it more of a meal replacement? Are limiting calories more important to you? How much sugar is in it? What is the serving size? So you’ll need to know what you’re looking for first. From there, typically less is more….fewer ingredients you can’t pronounce, less processed bars are what I recommend if you’re choosing a bar and can’t mix up a quick CleanSeries shake.
6. I don’t have money for a gym or home equipment, what can I do at home that is most effective?
No worries. I am a big believer in using your body weight as your gym. Get workout DVDs they are very inexpensive-roughly $20, you can do them at your convenience and in the comfort of your own home. All top trainers have them. Here are mine www.joelharperfitness.com This way you have a coach and a very clear way of exercising properly.
7. What are three first steps for someone that knows nothing about fitness or eating right?
1) Make sure you drink enough water every single day. Take your body weight, cut it in half and that is how many ounces you should be drinking scattered throughout every day.
2) Be consistent with your workouts. Look at it like brushing your teeth-you want to do a little bit everyday and make it a part of your daily routine. No options not to do it.
3) Make sure you eat 3 healthy meals a day starting with a healthy breakfast and 2 snacks in between. If you are trying to lose weight work on portion control. Make sure nothing on your plate touches.
8. I’ve read many places that it is best to workout in the morning, before your brain works. This isn’t possible for many, does it really matter when you workout?
I personally believe it does NOT. Every one is different. You want to find out what works best for you and stick to it. I have one client who cant workout at night because it keeps him up. He is much better in the morning. I have another client who is the opposite, he can only workout in the late afternoon. He is distracted in the morning and focused on his work day.
9. How do you stay motivated?
Multiple ways-1) I meditate and visualize exactly what I want. Then I create very specific steps to go after them. 2) I find role models of people doing exactly what I dream of and I educate myself on their successes and then I apply it to myself. 3) I don’t let myself down. I analyze my behavior and choices and I figure out ways to improve. 4) I make my path automated and evaporate choices that take me in the wrong direction or waste my time. 5) I try to get as much as possible done each and every single day.
10. Any secrets or tips you’d like to share?
Don’t strive for perfection. It doesn’t exist. I have been fortunate enough to work with some of the greatest and all of them have flaws. The reason they excelled is because they showed up and did the work day after day.
For more information on the complete TwinLab CleanSeries product line visit http://cleanseries.twinlab.com/
Do you incorporate whey protein into your diet?
- 5.3 ounce container plain Greek Yogurt (I use Stonyfield)
- ½ cup old fashioned oats
- ½ cup pure pumpkin
- 1 scoop CleanSeries Whey Protein Isolate Vanilla Wave
- 2 egg whites
- 2 tablespoon milk
- 1 tablespoon raw honey
- 2 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- Add all ingredients to a blender ( I used a Vitamix 5200) and blend til smooth.
- Heat griddle to 300
- Spray lightly with cooking spray
- Place ¼ cup batter onto griddle, continue til batter is gone.
- When golden, flip. Pancakes are done when golden again.
- Enjoy with eggs and fruit.