Optimum Nutrition is the manufacturer behind many some pretty high quality and award winning supplements. Protein powders in general are the most commonly used supplements today. Gold Standard 100% Whey is considered to be Australia’s most popular whey protein powders but is it gluten free?
Gluten free products are becoming increasingly popular and prevalent on shelves today and it’s as to no surprise why. It is estimated that one in every seventy Australian’s are intolerant to gluten. When you think about it, this is in fact a very large number. Gluten intolerance can cause considerable digestive discomfort that can be quite unpleasant. for the individual and can certainly create a negative impact on daily life.
In this guide we will take a glance at the ingredients of 100% Gold Standard Whey. We will also cover the flavours that are gluten free and the difference in the product labelling so you know exactly what to look for.
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a composite of proteins that can be found in many grain such as wheat, rye, barley and oats. Gluten is what gives glutenous foods their structure and texture and is required for many food products that we commonly consume in our everyday diets. Without gluten, many products simply would not be what they are.
What is Gluten Intolerance?
Gluten intolerance, also called gluten sensitivity, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, or non-celiac wheat sensitivity, (yes it has many names) is classed as a disorder where your body reacts quite poorly to eating gluten, gluten containing products or gluten derived ingredients.
For individuals who may be sensitive to gluten or know that they have a gluten intolerance, a flare-up of symptoms as such can be incredibly uncomfortable and highly inconvenient due to the distress gluten can cause in the digestive system. Typically following a gluten free diet is vital to avoid any digestive distress.
The most prevalent complaint from those suffering from sensitivities to gluten-containing foods is bloating and stomach discomfort. More specific gastrointestinal symptoms of gluten sensitivity have been identified as –
- Discomfort in the upper abdomen and lower
- Brain Fog
- Immune responses
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Gluten Free Ingredients
Optimum Nutrition 100% Gold Standard Whey is a comprised of a whey protein powder blend of whey protein isolates, whey protein concentrate and whey peptides and is the most popular whey protein around.
The primary ingredient in ON 100% Gold Standard is whey protein isolate. Whey protein isolate is currently the purest form of whey used today. With the formula being comprised of mostly whey protein isolates you can expect it to be an extremely pure formula.
Each serving provides 24 grams of rapidly digesting whey protein. It has low levels of fat, cholesterol, lactose, sugar and other additives.
ON 100% Gold Standard Whey, like other whey protein powders has an extremely good amino acid profile. This is crucial if you re looking to maximise muscle gain and improve their recovery post workout. Improving recovery is actually a key driving force behind the formula. It contains naturally occurring glutamine, glutamic acids and branched chain amino acids added to enhance both recovery and muscle protein synthesis.
Within the Optimum Nutrition Whey Protein Gold Standard flavours, not all are considered to be gluten free. Unflavoured whey protein powder supplements overall do not contain any gluten. There are ingredients and certain sources of food that can contain gluten and derivatives of gluten which then deem the product not to be gluten free.
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Gluten Free Flavours
In regards to gluten free protein powders, whey is a complete protein source. It contains all essential and non-essential amino acids that our bodies require for our biological and physiological processes.
As whey protein is bland in taste companies have chosen to incorporate other ingredients to enhance flavour. This creates mouth watering flavours that delight even the most harshest of critics. Who wants to drink a boring old protein shake anyway??
A perfect example of a flavour not being gluten free would be Optimum Nutrition’s Cookie & Cream flavour. This flavour contains added cookie crumbs, which are great for added flavour and crunch however they do contain gluten.
Within the range there is a large array of flavours so we suggest to check the entire ingredients list. Gluten may be found that you might not be aware of, so it is handy to check the ingredients first.
Other gluten-containing ingredients commonly found in protein powders are –
- Artificial colours
- Modified starches
Optimum Nutrition’s 100% Whey Gold Standard is a protein powder containing mostly whey protein isolates. The protein powder is used as a dietary supplement to help increase lean muscle mass, improve recovery, for satiety and for some to ensure that adequate daily protein requirements are met.
One rounded scoop of protein powder contains –
- 120 calories when mixed with water
- 24 grams of protein
- 1 gram of fat
- 3 grams of carbohydrates
- 60 milligrams of sodium
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Flavours
ON 100% Gold Standard Whey has a very extensive list of flavours, however not all are labelled as being gluten free.
Amongst Optimum Nutrition’s Gold Standard 100% Whey range some flavours are gluten free including –
- Double Rich Chocolate
- Extreme Milk Chocolate
- Banana Cream
- Delicious Strawberry
- Vanilla Ice Cream
- Blueberry Cheesecake
- Caramel Toffee Fudge
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Gluten Free Labelling
Optimum Nutrition are the manufacturers of high quality nutritional supplements in basically every category that you can identify on supplement store shelves. Not all of their products are considered to be gluten free however and in their Gold Stand Whey protein range, several are not labelled as being gluten free.
In regards to labelling on the back of the product you will clearly see the “Gluten Free” label in bold. This has made it relatively easy for customers to identify and means that the flavour is indeed gluten free.
For the flavour that do contain gluten, this can be found underneath the nutritional panel specifying i.e. “Contains: Milk, Soy & Gluten.”
If you are gluten intolerant it is important to avoid proteins that contain glutamine peptides as most cases they are derived from wheat. ON Gold Standard 100% Whey does use top quality proteins such as whey protein isolates which are not gluten free, so just keep in mind that you will need to check individual flavours.
What Makes a Flavour Not Gluten Free?
As whey protein powder itself is very bland in flavour and texture, most protein powders have additional ingredients added such as flavourings, stabilisers and preservatives included in the formulas to enhance the taste and mixability of the product. What this means is that some powders are in fact made with gluten-containing ingredients.
Something to also be aware of is that if a whey protein powder is manufactured in the same facility as other products containing gluten then there is a inherent risk of cross-contamination. Even with the highest and most stringent quality control measures there is a risk even if the product itself does not contain a glutenous ingredient.
Ingredients to avoid in protein powders if following a gluten free diet
When seeking out nutritional supplements such as protein powders, you should aim to be aware of certain ingredients that may go unnoticed as containing gluten or being gluten derived.
The following list are some of these such ingredients that you may not be aware of:
- Oats (unless they are certified gluten free)
- Some natural and artificial flavours
- Certain types of food colouring
- Brewer’s yeast
- Graham flour
- Hydrolyzed wheat protein
- Modified wheat and food starch
You may need to be on the lookout for these ingredients in particular on products that are not labelled as being gluten free. If any of the above are listed on a product that is labelled as being gluten free then you can be confident that the product and it’s ingredients do not contain any gluten.
A note on whether ON 100% Gold Standard Whey is a soy free protein powder. Soy lecithin is used as an emulsifier in the instantising process, which is why Gold Standard 100% Whey mixes up so effortlessly in both cold water or milk. There is such a small amount of soy lecithin in each serving and it is considered to be gluten free.
The Take Home
It can be extremely challenging at times when you are looking for a whey protein supplement that is gluten free. Although whey protein is naturally gluten free many, some flavours of ON 100% Gold Standard Whey do contain gluten due to the additional ingredients and flavouring added to make them into what they are.
ON 100% Gold Standard Whey do clearly label their products to identify which flavours are gluten free and those which are not.
When you are aiming to find a suitable gluten free protein powder there are in fact several gluten-free whey protein options are available to help you build muscle and improve your performance. ON 100% Gold Standard Whey is a great go-to with plenty of flavour options that are gluten free and taste absolutely delicious.