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Protein Shakes for Hepatitis C

Protein Shakes for Hepatitis C

Finding a healthy source of protein can be tough when you have liver disease. Too much ammonia can create problems for your brain. Too little and your body can’t perform important functions for tissue growth and repair. This is especially true while treating for the Hepatitis C Virus. One easy way to make sure you are getting enough protein is by drinking a protein shake. They are a quick and easy way to insure that you are taking good care of your liver.

You may think that protein is not for you. I mean, just because you have a virus and are on medication does not mean you are ready for the nursing home and that little can of protein that they give your grandma. On the other hand, those drinks that are for bodybuilding is the last thing on your mind. Let me tell you that protein shakes are for everybody, including you!

Most stores and pharmacies carry a “ready to serve” protein shake. They come in a variety of flavors like chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. You want to look for one that has at least 12 grams or more of protein to make it a satisfying meal replacement. Watch for sales and coupons so that you can stock up. These are great to keep in the fridge for those times when you don’t have the energy to prepare a meal.

The powder mixes have about 20 grams of protein per serving. They are easy to make with a plastic cup and a shaker ball. You simply add cold milk and shake it up for a quick drink within a couple of minutes. It doesn’t’ have to be boring though. Make it fun and jazz up your drinks sometimes. You can invest in an appliance that will easily blend your powder with milk. All you have to do is add some fruit to get a real treat with your protein. By using frozen fruit, you can have an icy smoothie that is quick and delish!

Most powder mixes will use a single main source for protein. The popular ones are soy, whey, hemp, chia, and pea to name a few. Choosing one is mostly a matter of price and taste. Some are easier on the stomach too. The texture can also vary. For instance a lot of fiber will make a shake very thick.

Protein shakes have come a long way in recent years. There is a whole industry built around protein supplements. That makes it easy to find a healthy and good tasting brand in most stores. You can make a shake a day and get your protein needs met with only cents per serving. You may have to do some trial and error to find out which brands taste the best to you. Buying a sample size can give you an idea of which flavor you like best. Be sure and run the ingredient list by your doctor if you have advanced liver disease. If you are like me, a protein shake will become a part of your daily mean plan!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Barb
    4 years ago

    Hi Karen my liver doctor told me that some of those protein shakes are really bad and I had to stop drinking mine because it had Stevia in it – the sweetener. I read that it can cause liver problems. But I wonder if there is any such thing as a protein powder with sugar in it instead of stevia or xylotol. The reason I say this is because I was drinking a protein shake for a year right when I had very high liver enzymes and I was taking too many supplements, too. I had to stop everything. I am sure you know what you are talking about though. Just wondered what shakes you recommend. The doctor is still testing me monthly and I will keep an eye on my tests.

  • Karen Hoyt moderator author
    4 years ago

    Hi Barb,
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I’ve heard different viewpoints about Stevia. Some gastro’s say it’s safer than sugar. I tend to go on the conservative side when possible. I’m very cautious about what ingredients are in my shakes and run it by my doctor always.
    With that in mind, he once told me that many people like me tend to not get enough protein due to fear of using one with the wrong ingredients. In that case, it may be better to use a basic protein mix with little or no vitamins and supplements added. That way you won’t run the risk of malnutrition. The liver needs protein to heal.
    I’m glad you shared. I am positive that it has probably happened to others. That is the thing with liver disease, everyone is different and it’s important to talk to your doctor about your blood work when making decisions.
    xo Karen:)

  • Barb
    4 years ago
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