Nutrex Plant Protein Explained: Vegan & Natural, yet Stevia-Free!

Is this the Best Vegan / Plant-Based Protein Powder?!
Nutrex Plant Protein is HERE!

In May 2019, Nutrex Research teased the Nutrex Naturals line, advertising vegan-friendly, advanced formulas that tasted great while using natural flavors.

Nutrex Plant Protein

Gourmet Taste in a Plant Protein is here! Nutrex Plant Protein launches in three flavors, uses four types of protein, and has no stevia but uses monk fruit instead!!

The first supplement from the new line has been announced, and we’re honored to be able to take part in the news:

Introducing Nutrex Plant Protein!

After last year’s successful return to protein powders with IsoFit, the next step was naturally to go… natural! And that’s exactly what they’re doing, with Nutrex Plant Protein, an all-natural, 100% plant-based protein powder that’s vegan friendly, with a few twists, including three initial flavors!

Nutrex Plant Protein highlights: This one’s different

We’ll start with the biggest news up top:

  • Stevia-Free!

    Nutrex Plant Protein is actually based off of monk fruit extract, which we’ve found to be sweeter but also far more expensive. This alone should interest nearly anyone who enjoys protein!

  • 20g protein from four protein sources:

    Pea protein, silk brown rice protein, pumpkin seed protein (as Compound Solutions Smooth Protein™), and sunflower seed protein

  • Three launch flavors:

  • Less than 1g sugar added

We have a sneak-peak in our interview with Nutrex’s Director of Product Innovation, Max Fairchild, but first, make sure you sign up for our Nutrex news alerts so you get notified when all these new products and flavors are live!

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Nutrex Plant Protein: Team PricePlow Interviews Max Fairchild

The label is now live, but before it was launched, Max let us in on a few secrets:

Note: The above video was cut from the overall discussion with Max, which spanned a number of health topics. Subscribe to our YouTube channel above to get notified when the full video is live!

Max made some big claims on the taste and texture, and he said that he simply wouldn’t bring a product that didn’t give their team something to be excited about. He was 100% right – this product is beyond legit – even for users who are used to drinking whey milkshakes!

Nutrex Plant Protein Nutrition Facts

All of those ingredients sum up to an excellent nutritional profile for Nutrex’s Plant Protein. In each 31.5g scoop, here’s what you’re getting:

Nutrex Plant Protein Ingredients

Quite a clean protein powder, and that extra saturated fat is from uber-healthy MCT! This is the Cinnamon Cookies flavor.

  • Calories: 130
  • Protein: 20g
  • Carbohydrates: 4g
    • Fiber: 3g
    • Less than 1g of sugar!
  • Fat: 3g
    • Saturated Fat: 1g

That’s some solid nutrition! The macros above are for the German Chocolate Cake flavor, which based on our taste review up, tastes as good as it sounds. The other flavors (Vanilla Caramel and Cinnamon Cookies) may carry slightly different nutritional profiles, but they all should be around what we have listed here!

Below you’ll also see that you’re getting 1g of saturated fat from super healthy sources like MCTs, so we never worry about that number. Toss in a solid dose of fiber, barely any sugar, and 20g of muscle-building protein, and you got everything you need for a satiating, effective protein powder.

Nutrex Plant Protein Ingredients

Nutrex really bucks the trend here, as most protein powders are loaded with stuff that can’t be tagged as “natural”. In this case, we’ve got an entirely natural and vegan label… but it gets even crazier — no stevia! What kind of concoction could lead to such a great-tasting, pure label?

We start with the protein blend, but then, just like with Nutrex’s IsoFit (whey protein isolate), we look to the thickeners and gums to bring it all together like nobody else:

  • Vegan Protein Blend – Pea, Brown Rice, Pumpkin Seed, and Sunflower Seed!

    Nutrex draws on multiple different protein sources in order to deliver a complete vegan protein that both tastes great and mixes well.

    • Pea Protein

      Pea Protein

      Pea Protein and Whey Protein were both significantly better than placebo (not surprising), but not significantly different from each other.[2]

      When discussing vegan protein powders, you’ll almost always see pea protein as the primary protein source. Sure, it may have a bit more of a “grittier” texture than other proteins, but based on the research, it’s likely the most superior vegan protein source out there.

      You probably already know that eating complete proteins (ones that contain all 9 of the essential amino acids, or EAAs) is crucial when it comes to building and maintaining muscle. Luckily, pea protein is a complete protein,[1] providing you the building blocks you need. In fact, pea protein has been demonstrated to be equally effective as whey protein when it comes to building muscle![2]

      If you didn’t know that, then that makes you rethink vegan proteins a bit, huh? But now it’s time to up the texture and flavor a bit:

    • Brown Rice Silk

      Backing up the amino acid-induced effects of pea protein, brown rice protein seems to be just as effective! It too is a complete protein,[3] and despite only containing around 70% of the EAA profile of whey, you don’t have to worry about losing any nutritional value.[3] Studies have shown that, when it comes to markers of improved body composition and improved exercise performance, no differences were found between rice and whey.[4]

    • Smooth ProteinⓇ

      Rounding out the protein blend are pumpkin seed and sunflower seed protein, both from our friends at Compound Solutions. Smooth ProteinⓇ is made in a couple different variations, but Nutrex decided to go with both the pumpkin seed and sunflower seed options. This is the first product we’ve seen using the sunflower seed variety, and needless to say, it clearly hasn’t disappointed.

      Compound Solutions Smooth Protein

      Compound Solutions Smooth Protein comes in several options, all vegan-based!

      There’s not a ton out there in regards to analysis of the amino acid profiles of either seed, but their high nutrient and antioxidant content is well-documented.[5,6,7] One study from 2009 suggests that pumpkin seed protein isolate can be used to treat liver disease, due to its high hepatoprotective effect![8]

      Bringing top of the line texture?

      While we haven’t used these proteins alone, we’re led to believe that their key benefits are in terms of texture, as Compound Solutions markets them as Smooth ProteinⓇ.

      All in all, Nutrex is giving you a mix of different protein sources – each of them vegan, and bringing their own unique benefits to the table!

  • The flavoring, sweetening, and thickening agents

    • C8VantageⓇ MCT Powder

      Coming from NNB Nutrition, this patented form of MCT powder is an optimized form of the highly beneficial fatty acids.[9] Medium-chain triglycerides are one of the trendiest health foods on the market right now, and for good reason. They offer a variety of potential benefits, from helping to burn more fat to reducing risk factors for various forms of disease.[10]

      C8Vantage MCT

      Research has shown C8 (caprylic acid) to be the most powerful and speediest of the MCTs

      C8VantageⓇ actually isolates caprylic acid, also known as C8, which seems to be the most powerful of the three MCTs. Nutrex is using it here to help flavor, and potentially even thicken, the powder, but any ancillary health benefits are much appreciated.

      Gone are the days of anyone believing the massive lie that “saturated fat is unhealthy”. This epic saturated fatty acid is one of the best of them all!

    • Organic Agave Inulin

      Keeping things natural, Nutrex has decided to forgo any artificial sweeteners in Plant Protein. In the place of things like sucralose and aspartame, we first find inulin. Derived from plants, inulin is a fructan,[11] which is a chain of fructose molecules linked together in a way that makes its digestion a bit unique. It’s not broken down by the small intestine like other sugars; instead, it acts as a prebiotic,[11] digested by the body as a fiber. Studies show that inulin is not only easily digested by the body,[12] but can boost gastrointestinal health as well![11]

      Nutrex Plant Protein Preview

      We got ’em in early! Subscribe to PricePlow on YouTube and follow us on Instagram to see what we thought!

      Inulin also has a natural sweet taste to it, deeming it a suitable sweetener in food products. So, not only does this stuff taste good, but it helps grow healthy gut bacteria, too? Sign us up!

    • Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

      Pink Himalayan sea salt is seen more and more these days, and Nutrex decides to take advantage of its widespread availability here. Essentially, it’s a lesser processed form of salt, making it a more natural option when compared to regular table salt. While there may be some advantages in terms of electrolyte balance and hydration, it’s more or less used here strictly for taste.

    • Monk Fruit Extract

      Monk fruit extract helps carry much of the flavoring system here, along with inulin. This is what is used instead of stevia, essentially – and it seems to be a difference maker given the initial taste testings, that’s for sure!

      Monk fruit extract is about 100-200 times sweeter than sugar,[13] which is especially crazy given it has zero calories when extracted well enough. Monk fruit gets it sweetness from a high content of antioxidant mogrosides, which research has shown do not affect blood glucose levels[14]!

      While the exact amounts may vary with the flavor of Plant Protein, the overall flavoring system used here definitely delivers an exceptional taste for this natural, vegan protein powder!

    • Binders – Guar and Xantham Gum

      Nutrex Plant Protein Cinnamon Cookies

      The Cinnamon Cookies Flavor is the one that left us simply stunned!

      In order to avoid a that “watery” texture that some protein powders have (it’s called a protein shake, isn’t it?!), guar and xantham gums come save the day.

      Guar gum is a complex polysaccharide that actually bonds with hydrogen to serve as a thickening agent within solutions.[15] Research shows that it may aid digestion, especially in people experiencing digestional issues.[16] Because guar gum is also a soluble fiber, it carries the same blood sugar-lowering and increased satiety effects other fibers do![17,18]

      Xanthan gum is also a polysaccharide, but is actually yielded when fermenting sugar with a bacteria called “Xanthomonas campestris.”[19] This thickening substance has been shown to aid digestion,[20] increase fullness,[21] and lower blood sugar,[21] reinforcing the effects of guar gum.

      Potential issues averted by smart formulation

      The old saying “too much of a good thing isn’t necessarily a good thing” applies here. While these gums can offer some health benefits, they can cause some problems, too, as Nutrex formulator Max Fairchild discussed in the podcast interview shown on this page. Too much can cause you to need way too much water in your shake, and nobody wants to drink 20oz just to get one serving of protein.

      Monk Fruit

      Also known as Luo Han Guo, Monk Fruit can be extracted for its non-nutritive constituents that are insanely sweet. You just don’t see it as often as stevia because it’s expensive and tougher to stabilize.

      But worse, with poorly formulated products, excessive amounts of these thickeners can result in some undesirable outcomes, such as bowel obstruction from guar gum[22] and laxation with xanthan gum.[23] That being said, Team Nutrex has taken care of the issue (as you don’t need that much water to make these shakes work) and these kinds of problems only arise when consuming a massive amount of this stuff.

      The FDA recognizes each substance as safe, and research suggests that around 20g per day is where these issues come about.[24] We’re only talking milligrams in Nutrex Plant Protein, but if you’re really amping up your thickening gum intake, then this may be of concern to you.

We also want to point out the sodium content here, which is around 300mg. While we are never concerned about it, some readers watching their sodium intake may be. The addition of pink himalayan sea salt is the likely suspect here, but unless you’re monitoring how much salt you’re consuming, the flavor (and performance) gains are well worth it! For the vast majority of us, salt is not the enemy – sugar and seed oils are!

Flavors Available

    Again, our sample taste review is up above. We’ll have more content coming, so subscribe to the PricePlow YouTube channel and follow PricePlow on Instagram to get notified!

    In the meantime, sign up for our Nutrex news alerts, it sounds like this is a series you won’t want to miss!

    Nutrex Plant Protein - Deals and Price Drop Alerts

    Get Price Alerts

    No spam, no scams.

    Disclosure: PricePlow relies on pricing from stores with which we have a business relationship. We work hard to keep pricing current, but you may find a better offer.

    Posts are sponsored in part by the retailers and/or brands listed on this page.

    Official Nutrex Plant Protein Renders

    Nutrex Plant Protein Cinnamon Cookies

    Cinnamon Cookies

    Nutrex Plant Protein Vanilla Caramel

    Vanilla Caramel

    Nutrex Plant Protein - German Chocolate Cake

    German Chocolate Cake

    The Full Nutrex Plant Protein Label

    Nutrex Plant Protein Label

    The full Nutrex Plant Protein Label (Cinnamon Cookies flavor)

    About the Author: Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto is a research scientist and water sports athlete who founded PricePlow. He is a biohacker with extensive experience in supplementation and dietary modification, whose personal expertise stems from several "n=1" experiments done on himself.

    Mike's goal is to bridge the gap between nutritional research scientists and non-academics who seek to better their health in a system that has catastrophically failed the public.

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    References

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    2. Babault, Nicolas et al; “Pea proteins oral supplementation promotes muscle thickness gains during resistance training: a double-blind, randomized, Placebo-controlled clinical trial vs. Whey protein.”; Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition; vol. 12,1 3; 21 Jan. 2015; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4307635/
    3. Kalman, Douglas S; “Amino Acid Composition of an Organic Brown Rice Protein Concentrate and Isolate Compared to Soy and Whey Concentrates and Isolates.”; Foods (Basel, Switzerland); vol. 3,3; 394-402; 30 Jun. 2014; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5302255/
    4. Joy, Jordan M et al; “The effects of 8 weeks of whey or rice protein supplementation on body composition and exercise performance.”; Nutrition journal; vol. 12 86; 20 Jun. 2013; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3698202/
    5. Phillips, Katherine M, et al; “Phytosterol Composition of Nuts and Seeds Commonly Consumed in the United States.”; Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry; U.S. National Library of Medicine; 30 Nov. 2005; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16302759
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    7. Guo, Shuangshuang et al; “A review of phytochemistry, metabolite changes, and medicinal uses of the common sunflower seed and sprouts (Helianthus annuus L.).”; Chemistry Central journal; vol. 11,1 95; 29 Sep. 2017;https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5622016/
    8. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/0712/0b38b15247ae808d526a8cd3e9f11f80e04a.pdf
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    11. Meyer, D, and M Stasse-Wolthuis; “The Bifidogenic Effect of Inulin and Oligofructose and Its Consequences for Gut Health.”; European Journal of Clinical Nutrition; U.S. National Library of Medicine; Nov. 2009; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19690573
    12. Holscher, Hannah D, et al; “Gastrointestinal Tolerance and Utilization of Agave Inulin by Healthy Adults.”; Food & Function; U.S. National Library of Medicine; June 2014; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24664349
    13. Insight, Food; “Everything You Need to Know about Monk Fruit Sweeteners.”; IFIC Foundation; 25 Apr. 2019; https://foodinsight.org/everything-you-need-to-know-about-monk-fruit-sweeteners/
    14. Zhou, Ying, et al; “Insulin Secretion Stimulating Effects of Mogroside V and Fruit Extract of Luo Han Kuo (Siraitia Grosvenori Swingle) Fruit Extract.”; Yao Xue Xue Bao = Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica; U.S. National Library of Medicine; Nov. 2009; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21351724
    15. Thombare, Nandkishore, et al; “Guar Gum as a Promising Starting Material for Diverse Applications: A Review.”; International Journal of Biological Macromolecules; U.S. National Library of Medicine; July 2016; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27044346
    16. Russo, Luigi et al; “Partially hydrolyzed guar gum in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome with constipation: effects of gender, age, and body mass index.”; Saudi journal of gastroenterology : official journal of the Saudi Gastroenterology Association; vol. 21,2; 2015; 104-10; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4392570/
    17. Aller, Rocio, et al; “Effect of Soluble Fiber Intake in Lipid and Glucose Levels in Healthy Subjects: a Randomized Clinical Trial.”; Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice; U.S. National Library of Medicine; July 2004; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15163472
    18. Rao, Theertham Pradyumna, et al; “Post-Meal Perceivable Satiety and Subsequent Energy Intake with Intake of Partially Hydrolysed Guar Gum.”; The British Journal of Nutrition; U.S. National Library of Medicine; 14 May 2015; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25851425
    19. “Effective Variables on Production and Structure of Xanthan Gum and Its Food Applications: A Review.”; Biocatalysis and Agricultural Biotechnology; Elsevier; 21 Feb. 2017; https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1878818116301116
    20. Daly, J, et al; “The Effect of Feeding Xanthan Gum on Colonic Function in Man: Correlation with in Vitro Determinants of Bacterial Breakdown.”; The British Journal of Nutrition; U.S. National Library of Medicine; May 1993; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8329363
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    22. Lewis, J H; “Esophageal and Small Bowel Obstruction from Guar Gum-Containing ‘Diet Pills’: Analysis of 26 Cases Reported to the Food and Drug Administration.”; The American Journal of Gastroenterology; U.S. National Library of Medicine; Oct. 1992; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1329494
    23. Woodard, G, et al; “Xanthan Gum: Safety Evaluation by Two-Year Feeding Studies in Rats and Dogs and a Three-Generation Reproduction Study in Rats.”; Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology; U.S. National Library of Medicine; Jan. 1973; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4686784
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