You’ve taken a swig out of your liquid protein shake and found out that it is past its expiration date. You are probably wondering now, is it bad to drink an expired liquid protein shake?
Like other products, protein products like ready-to-drink protein shakes and protein powder also expire but that doesn’t mean that you can’t drink them at all.
Keep on reading to find out more about protein products’ expiration dates, signs of spoilage, risks, and more.
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Is It Bad To Drink Expired Liquid Protein Shake?
Well, it all depends on the quality of the protein drink. Oftentimes, products like liquid protein shakes or protein powder that went past their expiration dates are safe to drink as long as they are sealed and stored in a suitable environment and temperature.
In addition, they should not have any signs of spoilage. Visible signs of spoilage in the drink mean that it has already lost its quality. Therefore is not safe to drink.
Below, we discuss the following signs in more detail.
Signs that your liquid protein shake is already not safe to drink
It is easy to find out if the protein product is already not safe to drink through its physical characteristics.
When you see these signs on your drink, it is best to treat yourself to a newly opened protein product.
- Rancid Odor
The United States Department of Agriculture explains that spoiled foods naturally develop an off odor due to naturally occurring spoilage bacteria.
Any food that develops such a rancid odor is not safe to eat and is best to dispose of immediately.
- Unpleasant Taste
Apart from the odor, spoiled foods can also have an unpleasant taste caused by spoilage bacteria. This makes the food totally unhealthy and not suitable for consumption. The taste of expired protein shakes can be sour or bitter.
- Change In Color
When a food or drink spoils, there is a strong possibility that its color fades or darkens.
Some drinks may change in color but not go bad, so always check for the odor and taste first to know whether the expired protein shake is still safe to drink.
- Change In Texture
You may notice the shake to have a thinner or thicker consistency. For powder proteins, clumping can also take place.
The texture is not always a strong sign that your protein shake has already gone bad so always check for the smell and taste first.
Why You Shouldn’t Drink An Expired Protein Shake
Even if the liquid protein shake has retained its quality and is generally safe to drink despite being expired, we still can’t recommend drinking expired liquid protein shakes.
Here are the reasons why:
- The protein shake may offer less effectiveness
As the protein drink becomes older, it can be less effective. Although the protein doesn’t easily break down when properly stored.
The other nutrients and fats in the protein product can decline or spoil over time. Hence, you may not be able to get the full benefits of the product.
- Possible gastrointestinal side effects
Expired or spoiled products may develop harmful microorganisms that can produce toxins. These toxins can irritate the stomach and intestines resulting in inflammation and pain.
You may experience food poisoning symptoms like constipation, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Do Expiration Dates Actually Matter?
There is a reason why expiration dates are important. These dates are a guideline for consumers like you so you can consume the food accordingly and get the product’s best quality and benefits.
After the expiration date, the products will not be of their best quality and safety.
Terms like “use by”, “best by”, and “sell by” are also printed on the product’s label and used to indicate the best date to consume food.
The “use by” date is the date when the product should be eaten to ensure the best quality. On the other hand, the “best by” date indicates when the product should be eaten to get the full quality and ensure safety for consumption.
“Sell by” dates serve as a guideline for store owners on how long the product should remain on their shelves. Products that go beyond the “sell by” dates are often disposed of but are still safe to eat.
How To Prevent Liquid Protein Shake From Getting Bad
Food items naturally go bad but there are ways to avoid this situation. If you are having trouble preventing your protein shakes or other food items from going bad, these tips are for you.
- Take Note of The Expiration Date
Taking note of the product’s expiration date is important to ensure that you get the quality that you paid for. It is also important for your safety.
Furthermore, it can help you decide which to consume first. By taking note of the expiration date, you can consume the drink that is closer to the expiration date.
In addition, knowing the expiration date helps you decide when the best time to dispose of your food items.
- Store Properly
Unexpired food and drink can easily go bad when not stored properly. Keeping your protein products in moist and unsanitary places can make them go bad faster. Always follow the storage instructions on the product’s label.
Apart from the storage, you should also keep in mind to keep the protein product’s packaging sealed and undamaged. Damaged packaging can affect the quality of the product and raise safety concerns.
- Only Buy The Amount of Protein Shake That You Can Consume
Seeing how many protein shakes and products you have in store may motivate you to do your daily tasks or meet your fitness goals.
However, this can cause you to oversupply in the long run. Hence, we highly recommend only buying the amount that you can consume.
You may opt to restock weekly or monthly so you can keep track of your protein products and prevent them from going past their expiration dates.
Buying only enough stocks of protein products doesn’t just keep you safe from having bad protein shakes but can also save you some money.
Liquid protein shakes are a great way to refuel the muscles and replenish the body when working out.
However, like other consumable products, they can also go past their expiration dates. Expired protein shakes are generally safe to consume as long as there are no spoilage signs like rancid odor, unpleasant taste, and change in color, and texture.
Despite being safe for consumption, expired protein shakes may not have the same effectiveness and cause possible gastrointestinal side effects and food poisoning symptoms like constipation, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Hence, it is best to always pay attention to the expiration date of the product so you can get its full benefits and prevent consequences.