Fitness and sports concept with a scoop of protein powder necessary nutrition for muscle recovery after an intensive workout, next to a protein shaker
Last updated: June 19, 2020

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During a workout, it’s super important to stay properly hydrated and nourished. It doesn’t matter whether you’re working out to lose weight, just for fun or to lead a healthy lifestyle, protein shakers have become key tools for fitness enthusiasts for this reason. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you’re a novice to physical activity or a professional athlete — Nutrition and hydration is the cornerstone of achieving optimum stamina before, during and post-training.

These containers are best known for being used to mix protein shakes. However, they can also be used to hold any other supplement combination you may need throughout your workout. The Canadian market is flooded with shakers of all sizes, and materials, with a variety of accessories, which may make it difficult to find the right one. To help you out, we’ve created this guide with all the things to know about how this trendy fitness accessory can make a big difference in the way you train.

Key Facts

  • Protein shakers are great tools in allowing you to remain well-nourished and hydrated before, during and after your training session.
  • Shakers are now made of different materials, such as plastic, stainless steel, and even glass models have emerged. When choosing a plastic shaker (the most popular material for shakers) make sure it’s free of toxins harmful to your health and well-being. The main toxic component to watch out for in plastic items is: BPA (bisphenol A).
  • Some protein shakers offer different kinds of accessories. Some accessories include funnels, strainers, mixing balls and/or measurement indicators. You can choose the optimal feature combination to best suit your needs.

The best shakers on the Canadian market

In order to lead a healthy lifestyle, it is important to find a good balance between training, eating well and staying hydrated. The number of times a week your workout doesn’t really matter, a protein shaker will always help you get all the supplements and nutrients you need for increased energy and an overall improvement in your fitness levels. This next section includes the top 5 protein shakers available to Canadians, check them out:

Beyond – Classic Protein Mixer Shaker Bottle (28 oz.)

This multi-functional, simple, yet extraordinary mixer bottle has a thoughtful design that is your perfect workout companion. This set has a total 20-ounce/800 ml holding capacity. It comes with a primary bottle that holds 18-ounces of liquid, detachable protein powder box and a 3 in 1 capsule storage container, which all hook together for one perfect storage unity protein shake bottle. Its convenient sport look makes it easy to carry anywhere.

The twist and lock protein box provide storage for powders, supplements and more. It has a leak-proof seal flip cap with a secure screw-on lid that you can carry with you wherever you go due to its user-friendly, hook-able top and non-slip exterior design. The interlocking jars are designed to be used with or without the bottle. This bottle by Beyond is BPA and phthalate-free and comes in a sleek black and red design.

PerfectShaker — The Last Jedi Series Star Wars Collection Protein Shaker Bottle

Represent your inner Jedi during your pre, present, and post-workout. The shakers by PerfectShaker offer top quality performance and lets you show off a bit of your personality at the same time! This protein shaker bottle is specially designed to endure the wear and tear of chaotic physically active environments, ensuring that no matter what, it does not leak. The patented action rod technology is developed based on the laws of motion. During the blending process, the agitator and rod combine to form a high-performance piston, colliding with momentum in opposite directions.

The rapid collision builds momentum as the fluid mixture accelerates and the impact intensifies. This explosive impact results in instant emulsification and a perfectly blended drink every time. The duraplex plastic is completely shatter-resistant. Performa PerfectShaker bottles use a specialized blend of polymers that ensure maximum shock absorption and elasticity, preventing cracks and breaks. These shaker bottles are 100% BPA-free and dishwasher safe.

RO-HITS — Protein Shaker Bottle (22 oz.)

This protein shaker bottle by RO-HITS is built with a 3-layer twist and lock storage system. It has a premium design with a durable 16 oz/500 ml main body, two 3 oz jars, a 2 oz pill, and a whisk mixer net. It’s leak-proof, expandable and unbelievably power, making it perfect for gym sports. The extra storage is available for storing powders, protein, vitamins, nutritional supplements, keys, hair bands and more. The bottle is an all-in-one solution for serious athletes.

The interlocking jars can be used with or without your shaker bottle. They can be the perfect storage container to throw in your purse or backpack. The whisk mixer net is the secret behind these bottles great emulsifying power. It allows you to mix your drinks to a smooth consistency and keeps ice or fruit skins away from the bottle nozzle, avoiding clogging of the mouthpiece. This bottle is made of 100% food-grade material and is BPA-free.

Evlution — Nutrition Blender Bottle (28 oz.)

This blender bottle by Evlution has a transparent black design that makes for easy measuring of protein shakes, smoothies, nutritional supplements or water for simple hydration. It has embossed ounce and millimetre markings to track your fluids precisely.  There is a patented BlenderBall that allows you to mix your drinks thoroughly for a smooth, easy to drink beverage every time.

This blender bottle holds up to 28-ounces and comes with a leak-proof seal. It has a durable design and will stay intact and crack-free no matter how much it is dropped or thrown around. Consumers love how it doesn’t smell of plastic and keeps the flavours of your shake just as they should be. It has a smooth design with grips on the side for comfortable holding. This is a simple, but high-quality shaker at an extremely affordable price.

BlenderBottle — Classic Loop Top Shaker

The protein shaker by BlenderBottle is Amazon’s #1 Bestselling shaker bottle. It is one of the best quality shakers at the cheapest price. It has a simple, one container design with a patented 316 surgical-grade stainless steel BlenderBall that mixes ingredients with ease, whether that be protein powders, smoothies, shakes or other supplemental powders. It has updated features that include a loop carry top and a flip cap with a tapered spout. The snap-on flip cap prevents spills while the twist on top prevents leaking.

While prices will vary, this product is available in 20-ounce, 28-ounce, and 32-ounce designs; allowing you to choose the bottle that will satisfy all your individual needs, providing you with the proper supplementation and hydration for your body. Its dishwasher safe, BPA and phthalate-free and comes in over 20 different colors for you to choose from.

Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about protein shakers

A great way to lead a healthier lifestyle is to incorporate shakes for functional and nutritional purposes. Choosing the right protein shaker can make adding these boosters into your training routine very easy. However, the relevant criteria for choosing the best shaker is not straightforward. In this next section, we have gathered all the information you need, as well as answered the most frequently asked questions among users.

Professional bodybuilding athlete relax after exhausting training. Athlete relax and drink water from sport bottle in gym interior.

When buying a shaker made of plastic, make sure it is BPA-free.
(Source: Golubovy: 54302299/ 123rf.com)

What is a protein shaker exactly?

A shaker, protein shaker or mixing cup, is a container that is often made of plastic and designed to make mixing food supplements with liquids easy and efficient. These containers allow you to make a nutritional drink on the spot. This makes it easy to have all the nutrients you need before, during or after a workout or physical activity. These items should make your life easier by being practical, light, easy to carry and transport.

The main part of any shaker is the compartment that looks like a large cup or tall bottle, this is where the liquid is stored. It is not uncommon for a protein shaker to come with an extra compartment to keep dietary supplements. Some of the newest designs also come with accessories like mixing balls, funnels or strainers — these are meant to help you produce a smooth, lump-free shake.

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A protein is made up of a cup or bottle with a tight-sealing lid. The lid often includes a drinking spout. The mixer helps integrate protein powder with liquid and break up lumps to create a smooth and homogenous drink.

How to use a protein shaker?

Most protein shakers come with 2 separate compartments. The main compartment is the cup intended for storing liquids. The extra compartment is for food supplements, such as protein powders or pre-workout supplements. Eventually, everything should be mixed inside the cup, with the goal of achieving a smooth and tasty beverage.

These are the basic steps to making a shake:

  • Pour a base liquid into the main compartment. In the case of protein shakes, some sort of milk or juice is recommended to facilitate the absorption of nutrients in the body.
  • More often than not, the supplement will be best when made fresh. Make sure to add the dry supplement to the liquid base on when ready to consume.
  • Make sure to shut the container properly and tightly before beginning to shake vigorously. Continue to do so until the shake is homogeneous and smooth.
  • If you have them, use a mixing ball, the strainer or filter, to properly dissolve possible lumps in the mixture.

Most protein shakers have measurements engraved on the side of the main compartment, these are meant to help you calculate the right proportion of liquids and supplements. We recommend reading the label of each supplement to know exactly what the suitable portions are. If you have any concerns, make sure to consult a professional.

Why are protein shakes needed in a training routine?

Protein shakes or fruit shakes are very popular among fitness enthusiasts because they help them replenish the nutrients and energy they lose while training. They are also great tools to stay hydrated and avoid the risk of fainting or feeling ill. Last but not least, the most basic use of protein is to gain muscle mass when combined with training.

“Neil

“Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. It is no wonder bodybuilders are snatching, grabbing, and gulping down protein shakes.”

What ingredients or supplements can be used with a protein shaker?

The most common ingredient used with protein shakers is water, probably because it mixes well with most supplements. The second most common base liquid is milk, which combines particularly well with protein supplements. The fat in milk makes it easier for the nutrients to be well absorbed by our organisms. In most mixtures, the liquid will fill most of the cup.

When looking at supplements, in Canada the most common supplement to consume is protein, whether in the form of powder or capsules. Nonetheless, fruits, creatine capsules, nuts, seeds, peanut butter, cinnamon or yogurt are also common ingredients in these shakes. It is important to note the if the products you’re mixing are not natural, you should consult a professional to ensure safe consumption.

Whey protein powder in scoop with vitamins and plastic shaker on wooden background

A protein shaker is made up of a cup or bottle made with a tight-sealing lid and a drinking spout.(Source: Lecic: 38674579/ 123rf.com)

Can shakers be dangerous to our health?

In the past, some plastic shakers contained bisphenol A, better known as BPA. This substance was found to be carcinogenic and highly toxic to our organisms. Even though in Canada the use of BPA is condemned, it is still important to check that every container you purchase, clearly shows it’s BPA free item and that it doesn’t contain other harmful chemical compounds, such as phthalate.

If you make sure this is the case with the item you choose, protein shakers should not pose any risks to your health. Of course, this is as long as you clean them well after each use. Nonetheless, as mentioned before, special attention should be paid to the dietary supplements that you decide to mix together, as some health conditions may require special care. For example, it’s important to keep in mind the relationship between protein and the kidneys.

Mackenzie WalserNephrologist M.D.

“When protein is ingested, protein waste products are created. Healthy kidneys have millions of nephrons that filter this waste. It’s then removed from the body in the urine. Unhealthy kidneys lose the ability to remove protein waste and it starts to build up in the blood.”

How to clean a protein shaker to prevent it from smelling?

Because these items are mostly used when playing sports and not often cleaned properly, they are known to develop smells over time. The best way to keep your shaker clean is to wash it directly after use. Rinse it with hot or warm water and a little detergent to remove dirt such as excess protein or fruit from the bottom and sides of the container and the lid.

If you are away from home and do not have dish soap, add a little water inside the shaker and mix it around well to remove as much residual shake as possible. When you get home, make sure to give it a thorough clean with hot water and detergent. Some shakers may also be dishwasher safe, making this process easier than it already is. When storing your shaker, make sure to leave the lid to allow air to flow.

Mike RoussellPhD – Pennsylvania State University

“According to research from the National Institute of Medicine, you can safely eat 30 percent of your calories from protein with zero concern about kidney or liver problems (commonly touted dangers of a high-protein diet). Aside from not eliciting any kidney or liver problems, eating more protein is actually better for you.”

What is the best protein shaker material?

Although plastic shakers are clearly the most popular presentation in Canada, some great protein shakers can be made of stainless steel. If you’re considering a plastic protein shaker, make sure to know the differences between common plastic, poor quality plastic, and reinforced plastic. To help you understand these terms, the following table highlights the advantages and disadvantages of each type:

Advantages Disadvantages
Common plastic Lightweight and portable. May contain BPA or other toxic substances.
In general, they are not biodegradable.
They can accumulate odours over time.
BPA-free plastic They are lightweight and portable.
They do not contain toxic substances.
They’re made tough.
They do not give off odours.
Generally, they are not biodegradable.
Stainless steel They are very resistant.
They hold temperatures better, both hot and cold.
They don’t contain BPA.
They’re heavy.
In general, they are not very easy to hold due to their slippery surface.

What are the benefits of drinking shakes while being physically active?

Protein shakes and supplements can have many benefits when combined with a healthy diet and physical exercise. Below we outline some of the key benefits of these types of shakes:

  • Shakes make it easy to quickly ingest many essential amino acids, necessary to maintain and repair muscle tissue.
  • They are meant to stimulate the synthesis of muscle protein after rigorous physical activity.
  • For endurance purposes, they help reduce muscle mass.
  • These mixes often provide added energy, which in turn helps promote muscle growth and faster recovery.
  • They allow athletes and fitness enthusiast to maintain balanced nutrition, which also supports muscle growth, recovery and overall health.

When should shakes be taken?

Often, the function and effects of the mixture you’re taking will dictate when and how you should ingest it. In the table below, you’ll notice that technically, protein shakes can be beneficial at any point before, during or after training:

Intake time Effect
Before training Ensures more intense and energised training.
During training Ensures muscle gain, less fat accumulation, and less stiffness after the session.
After training Aids in muscle regeneration and energy recovery.

Shopping Criteria

If you’re looking to add nutritious shakes to your exercise routine, a protein shaker will come in very handy. Before purchase, it’s important that you consider some important criteria concerning these items. This next section is a list of the most important aspects to keep in mind before buying a protein shaker. Even Though you’ll find a plethora of models, there are certain standards that every good shaker should meet:

Locking system

Having the contents of your shaker leak is not only costly, but it’s also annoying and it could ruin your day. No one likes to start a training session by opening their bag to find the contents of the shaker all over your belongings. For this reason, it’s super important that the container you choose is completely airtight when sealed. Always make sure how effective the closing system is before deciding on a product.

guy bodybuilder tired in gym hold shaker with sportive nutrition - protein of shaker , vertical photo

Protein shakers make staying nurtured and hydrated much easier.
(Source: Aleksey Mnogosmyslov: 48713474/ 123rf.com)

Durability and material

Although the vast majority of protein shakers in Canada are made of plastic, there are varying levels of durability within this category. You should keep in mind that reinforced plastic is much more resistant than the typical plastic used for disposable bottles. Also keep in mind that you will use your protein shaker when training and moving around a lot, so they must be able to withstand accidental impacts or being dropped.

Extra compartments

Basic protein shakers usually will only have one main compartment, basically making it a mixing and drinking bottle. To really make the most of a protein shaker, it is important to choose an item that includes extra compartments for protein, capsules, fruits, or other supplements. This will make it easier to carry and prepare a nutritious and hydrating blend.

Mixing mechanism

Naturally, a protein shaker should not fail in its main function: to properly mix the contents. A good mixer is what makes the difference between a smooth shake and a shake full of chunky lumps. In this regard, shaker accessories are super important, for example, the mixing ball can be of great use in helping avoid this annoying issue.

man makes a protein cocktail after a workout

A protein shaker should have removable parts that are easy to clean. (Source: Alexander Alexeev: 55153187/ 123rf.com)

BPA free

As mentioned a few times before, you should always ensure that any plastic product you buy is 100% BPA-free. As you know, this substance is highly toxic to our bodies and it can even be a cause of cancer in some cases. Although it’s hard to find products that contain BPAs in Canada today, if you don’t see the product explicitly states it’s free of BPAs, don’t risk it.

Capacity

When purchasing a protein shaker, capacity is another crucial aspect to consider. In Canada, at the moment shaker capacities range between 300 to 500 millilitres. When considering its capacity, keep in mind the different supplements and proportions you’ll need to mix in the container. For instance, if you only want to mix water and juices, a smaller capacity should be enough.

On the other hand, if you want to mix whey protein, fruit, water, and milk, it would benefit you to choose a larger shaker. It should be noted that when the capacity of the shaker exceeds 750 ml, it becomes a lot less practical. If you want to take your shaker with you wherever you go and be able to shake the mixture easily, your best option is a 500 ml container. 

Whey protein powder with shake and plastic shaker on wooden background

Plastic protein shakers are the most commonly used shakers in Canada. (Source: Serezniy: 38051657/ 123rf.com)

Easy to clean

Although this aspect may seem trivial at first, the parts of a good protein shaker should be easy to remove and clean. Make sure to check the structure and materials of the shaker before you buy it. Making sure it has an easy to clean, removable lid is an absolute must… if it’s dishwasher safe, well, that’s also a nice bonus.

Summary

Remember that even though you can find a great selection of shakers in Canada, not all shakers are made equally. A good protein shaker can be the perfect tool to stay nourished and hydrating during physical exercise. If you’re considering making one of these items your newest fitness companion, make sure to asses the quality of the material and whether or not it includes an added compartment or accessories.

Remember that when it comes to protein shakes, or any other supplement you decide to take, it’s important to know the right dosing and ingredient proportions. This will ensure you get the most out of your supplements while lowering the risk of any negative interactions. Lastly, the material of the shaker should be 100% BPA free to lower any other possible health risk. In short, a well-designed shaker can be a great addition to any health and fitness routine.

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(Source of featured image: Tiwaz: 94584355/123rf.com)

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