Protein shake recalled due to nerve damage risk

A protein shake manufactured by a leading sports nutrition firm has been recalled owing to high levels of selenium. Consuming too much of the compound can cause a serious condition known as selenosis.

Sunday, 13th March 2016, 5:17 pm
Updated Monday, 14th March 2016, 7:26 am
Protein shake health warning

A batch of USN Diet Fuel Ultralean (vanilla cream flavour) Nutrition Shake is being withdrawn by USN UK Limited because high levels of selenium may pose a risk to consumers.

A statement from the Belgian manufacturer read: “While occasional consumption would not be of concern, longer-term consumption of this product could result in selenosis and should be avoided.”

Selenium is found naturally in foods such as eggs and Brazil nuts but over-consumption can lead to rashes, nausea and even nerve damage.

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Protein shakes and other supplements have exploded in popularity in recent years.

According to Euromonitor figures worldwide sales of sports related protein products grew from £2.5bn in 2007 to £4.9bn in 2012 and are likely to reach £7.8bn in 2017. In the UK sales increased from £73m in 2007 to £170m in 2012 and are expected to reach £358m by 2017.

Protein supplements are popular with bodybuilders, but have found popularity with gym goers of all levels.

According to Chris Schmidt, a research analyst at market research firm Euromonitor International, demand for protein-rich products has grown as more people take an interest in their health and wellbeing.

Said Schmidt: “The bodybuilders were followed by professional athletes, then amateur and college athletes.”

“They turned into these lifelong users and that was a big part of what broke the stigma, because a guy from across the street used it, not some Arnold Schwarzenegger bodybuilding guy.”

USN UK Limited has confirmed no other flavours manufactured at the plant are affected.