Paleo Diet: A Quick Overview
The Paleo Diet sometimes referred to as the Paleolithic diet, or caveman diet eliminates most modern-day foods and goes back to the foods that cavemen ate. In simple terms, foods falling within the guidelines of the Paleo diet are those which can be hunted and gathered.
Essentially, Paleo-friendly foods include those which were consumed prior to the discovery of technologies that gave us cheese, legumes, and grains. On the other hand, protein powders of any type are forms of processed food, and by definition, should not fall within the rules of a Paleo diet.
Most Paleo’s however, look past the processed element, by searching for the purest and cleanest ingredients possible.
Following is a list of foods that typically fall under the Paleo Diet:
- Nuts and Seeds
- Healthy Natural Fats
- Healthy Oils
- Spices and Herbs
The following list contains ingredients that are not Paleo friendly:
- Processed and most packaged foods
- Grains including flour, pasta, and bread
- Dairy products
- Sugars which have been refined
- Potatoes, Beans, Lentils, Peanuts, and Peas
A true Paleo diet does not include any dairy products, however, many who follow a Paleo lifestyle will include certain types of proteins derived from dairy as the process involved in creating the Paleo protein powder isolates any egg remnants from the protein powder.
How To Choose A Paleo Protein Powder
The protein powder market is flooded with hundreds of different products, each targeting a different segment of the market such as women, men, bodybuilders, daily energy seekers, keto dieters, multi-flavored, unflavored, and of course, Paleo dieters.
Venturing into the local supplement store or searching online, can be a very daunting task. Without being armed with little information, it is easy to make the wrong decision and waste a lot of money.
Since the basis of the Paleo diet is to choose and eat non-processed food, which reaches the highest-level quality and purity, that should be the standard in choosing a Paleo protein powder.
This is a difficult task for individuals who follow a rigid Paleo regime, and in fact, some may choose not to use a Paleo protein powder at all. Those who see the benefits of incorporating a Paleo protein powder into their diets, must bend the Paleo rules slightly and consider the following prior to choosing a product.
- Ingredient Transparency
Just because a manufacturer of protein powders refers to their product as a Paleo Protein Powder or calls it Paleo Friendly, doesn’t mean that it is. The definition of Paleo, when it comes to protein powders is still a grey area and therefore, it is important that the ingredients match your personal idea as to what is or is not Paleo.
Beware of products that try to hide or disguise the entire ingredient list, as well as those which list a vast number of ingredients to make the product appear that is greater than it really is.
- Less Is More Approach
When searching for a good Paleo-friendly product, the “less is more” approach is a great rule to follow. In other words, the fewer ingredients on the label or supporting marketing materials, the greater the chance that the protein powder will meet Paleo standards. When you see a long list of ingredients, most of which are difficult to pronounce, it is likely time to move on.
For example, many protein powders will state that their product contains only 1 ingredient or 2 ingredients. Others will simply list it on the ingredients label. It is your responsibility to identify this. Finally, if a protein powder seems to meet the Paleo criteria, but includes ingredients you are not familiar with, look them up as they may be beneficial.
- Paleo-Friendly Ingredients
If you are leading a Paleo lifestyle, and following a Paleo diet, it is safe to assume that you are familiar with common ingredients which are Paleo-friendly. In general, you should look for powders that are derived from eggs, beef, chicken, fruits, and vegetables.
In addition, a great number of protein powders are whey protein or casein protein-based, and derivatives of cow’s milk. If you are willing to accept them as Paleo, you should consider them as well.
Since processed sugars and artificial flavors such as Sucralose or Xylitol are not allowed on a Paleo diet, look for natural flavoring from leaves of the stevia plant.
Although difficult to find, look for products that have been certified or verified by industry or government organizations such as the USDA or American Paleo Association.
The 5 Best Paleo Protein Powders In 2018
- Julian Bakery Paleo Protein Grass-Fed Beef Powder with Probiotics
The Julian Bakery Paleo Protein Grass-Fed Beef Powder with Probiotics is manufactured by California-based Julian Bakery, Inc. the largest Paleo manufacturer in the world. This product is 100% Paleo compliant and in keeping with the company, philosophy is gluten and GMO-free.
This Paleo Protein Grass-Fed Beef Powder has no beef after taste and is marketed by Julian Bakery as “A steak in powder form”. In addition, JB uses a proprietary fast freezing process that protects the integrity of the ingredients.
Packed with 25g of protein, 2g of carbs, 108 calories, L-Glutamine, and probiotics to protect the gut, this Paleo protein powder can be taken any time of day. It has proven to build muscle mass, increase strength, and assist in weight control.
The Julian Bakery Paleo Protein Grass-Fed Beef Powder with Probiotics has a 4 Star rating based on 1,456 customer reviews and is our #1 choice in the Paleo Protein Powder category.
- Curbs hunger cravings allowing for weight control and management
- Formulated with high-quality protein and L-Glutamine to build muscle mass and strength
- Includes probiotics to protect the gut and promote a flat stomach
- Easy to mix and is available in a variety of delicious flavors
- Numerous complaints about the taste being too sweet
- Appears to have changed the sweetening agent
- PaleoPro Paleo Protein Powder
PaleoPro Paleo Protein Powder is our second choice in the best paleo protein powder category with a 4.5 Star rating based on 453 customer reviews.
PaleoPro is 100% Paleo Diet compliant as it is gluten-free and contains no dairy, whey, or soy. Proteins in the powder are extracted from grass-fed beef which is raised without using antibiotics or any additional hormones.
Each serving contains 26 grams of protein derived from a combination of the following:
- Whole Egg Protein increases anabolic hormones, calories, and in turn muscle mass
- Egg White Protein which is a low-fat low calorie protein rating very high in terms of protein efficiency
- Beef Protein Isolate contains a protein and amino acid profile like that of whey protein
PaleoPro Paleo Protein Powder has achieved the prestigious Amazon’s Choice status and is an ideal Paleo Protein Powder for anyone on a Paleo diet.
- 100% Paleo friendly containing no gluten, soy, whey, dairy products, or lactose
- Extremely pure containing no preservatives, additives, and not processed with any harmful chemicals
- Delicious taste and naturally flavored from the leaves of the Stevia plant
- Created by Paleo people for Paleo people
- Some find it difficult to mix and may require shaking as opposed to stirring
- Although subjective, some concern about some but not all the flavors
- EQUIP Grass-Fed Beef Protein Powder
EQUIP Grass Fed Beef Protein Powder is again a Paleo-approved Paleo Protein Powder which is very safe for those prone to allergies as the product contains no whey, soy, chicken, or egg protein. In line with the Paleo friendliness, Equip Products use the slogan “Beef is the new whey”, which resonates with those who have adopted the Paleo lifestyle.
Recognizing that many of the protein products on the market include chemicals from the manufacturing process, fillers, synthetic materials, and additives, Equip Products, founded by a Physician, set out to “create the cleanest, most effective blends of nutrients in support of your body’s needs and your overall wellbeing”.
As a result, the EQUIP Grass-Fed Beef Protein Powder contains no artificial colors, artificial flavors, binding agents, preservatives, flow agents, or anything else which might be detrimental to health and well-being.
Sitting at #3 on our list of best Paleo Protein Powders, EQUIP Grass-Fed Beef Protein Powder has a 4.3 Star rating based on 231 customer reviews.
- 100% grass-fed containing no GMO hormones, and antibiotics
- Loaded with gelatin and collagen giving rise to immune, intestinal, joint, hair, and nail health
- Milk, lactose-free providing a great replacement for whey, soy, or egg protein-based powders
- Each serving contains 24 grams of protein
- Naturally flavored with stevia leaves
- Stevia leaves an after taste and some complain that it is too sweet
- The powder does not mix well with all liquids
- Bone Broth Protein Powder – Natural & Pure Paleo
Bone Broth Protein Powder – Natural & Pure Paleo, developed by Necessity Nutrition, is derived from one of the most rudimentary sources of vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, and glucosaminoglycans – bone broth. Some of these include calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and zinc.
Bone Broth Protein Powder – Natural & Pure Paleo includes a high collagen content that promotes the health and wellness of the bones, ligaments, hair, skin, tendons, and cartilage. In addition, collagen promotes the overall health of the tissue system in the body.
This versatile powder can be mixed into smoothies, dressings, sauces, soups, hot drinks, or used in cooking meats or baking.
Bone Broth Protein Powder – Natural & Pure Paleo has a 4 Star rating based on 181 customer reviews and is a tremendous Paleo protein powder.
- High essential vitamin and mineral content
- Paleo-friendly and is derived from one of the original nutrient sources – bone broth
- High collagen content
- Packed with essential amino acids
- Numerous concerns about the mixability. If not done correctly, tuns into a glue-like paste
- Smell and taste could be improved
- Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein Powder
Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein Powder is as close to a homemade broth you will find on the market. Each serving contains 20 grams of protein derived from chicken, and although it has zero carbs and only 100 calories, it is not recommended as a means of weight loss.
Unlike some of its competitors, Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Powder dissolves easily and is available in 8 delicious flavors including pure, vanilla, chocolate, turmeric, banana cream, cinnamon apple, coffee, and greens.
The main benefits of this bone broth powder are:
- Gut health
- Skin health
- Joint health
- Immune system maintenance
- Increase metabolism
Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Powder has a 4 Star rating based on 1,347 verified customer reviews and is a highly recommended bone broth-based Paleo protein powder.
- Contains collagen, gelatin, glucosamine, chondroitin which are nutrients often left out of most diets
- High-quality protein paleo-friendly powder which is dairy-free, soy-free, grain-free, gluten-free
- Available in a variety of flavors and is easily dissolved in water
- Promotes gut, skin, and joint health, while boosting energy, supporting the immune system, and increasing metabolism
- Some complaints about stomach and gas pains
- Mixed feelings on the taste of certain flavors
- Contrary responses from the customer service representative regarding the ingredients
Summing It Up
Choosing a Paleo Protein Powder is a very personal thing as the definition of Paleo differs from person to person. We hope, however, that the information provided helps you make an informed choice.
Our top 5 Paleo Protein Powders meet our criteria of high-quality standards, high rakings based on substantial customer reviews, and is 100% Paleo-friendly by most standards.
The Julian Bakery Paleo Protein Grass-Fed Beef Powder with Probiotics stood out as being #1 as it seemed to be the best all-around Paleo Protein Powder. That being said, the race was very close, and all 5 are tops in our books.