Mumbai, April 12: Researchers have raised concerns about the quality of protein powders sold in India. The observational analysis, the first of its kind, evaluated 36 brands and found that nearly 70% had misleading protein content information, with some providing only half of the claimed amount.

The study, published in the Journal Medical, was conducted by clinical researchers from Rajagiri Hospital in Kerala and a US-based technology entrepreneur. It also discovered that 14% of the protein supplements contained harmful fungal aflatoxins, and 8% had pesticide residues. Post-Ramadan Routine: 5 Easy and Healthy Tips To Transition Back to Everyday Life.

Toxins in Protein Powder

Highlighting the need for stricter regulation, the authors stated that most herbal protein-based supplements in India are of poor quality and contain liver-toxic botanicals. Dr Cyriac Abby Philips, the lead investigator, emphasised the lack of proactive analysis of protein supplements in the literature, particularly those widely used in India.

The findings underscore the need for stringent scrutiny and basic safety studies in the protein-based herbal and dietary supplement industry before marketing products. The study also sheds light on the need for consumer transparency and the medical community's role in educating the public about the potential benefits and harms of food and diet supplements. 'Zombie' Drug Threat Looms Over UK: US Warns Britain of Xylazine Aka Tranq Dope Addiction That Makes People Act Like 'Zombies'.

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The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has not commented on the findings. However, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya previously informed the Lok Sabha that numerous civil and criminal cases had been lodged for non-conforming food samples, including protein powders.

The analysed protein powders included blended, plant-based, and whey-based formulations, with some herbal extract blends. The study's revelations call for immediate attention to consumer rights and safety regulations in the dietary supplement market.

Study Raises Concern Over Protein Content

A recent study has raised concerns over the accuracy of protein content labelling and contamination in protein supplements. Out of 36 products tested, 25 (69.4%) were mislabeled, with actual protein content per 100g being less than advertised, varying from a 10% deficit to over 50%.

The analysis, which included plant-based and whey-based powders, revealed that *nine products had less than 40% detected protein content, while the remainder boasted above 60%. Notably, two products from a single manufacturer contained 62% and 50.4% less protein than claimed, and a popular brand from a reputed company was also found to have approximately 30% less protein than its label indicated.

The study also uncovered that some brands contained more protein than labelled, indicating either high-quality protein sources or the practice of "protein spiking"—the addition of cheap amino acids like glycine and taurine to inflate protein content artificially.

Furthermore, five out of the 36 samples (13.9%) were contaminated with aflatoxins, dangerous toxins produced by certain fungi, with some exceeding the safe limit of 10 μg/kg. Pesticide residue was detected in three samples (8.3%).

In light of these findings, Philips took to social media to criticise specific brands. BigMuscles was labelled as the "worst brand," Amway's product was the "worst plant-based," and Protinex, Ensure, and B-Protin were called out as the "worst brands advertised as the best." Philips also cautioned against Elements and Nutrilite by Amway due to their fungal toxin content.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 12, 2024 04:12 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).