Spotlight on: Anchor Protein + - Is it all that it’s marketed to be?

I have been having a lot of people ask about the new range Protein + products by Anchor. This new range includes Protein + yoghurts, protein powders, and milk. With all the hype that this product has created, I thought it was about time we went a little deeper to find out what’s actually in these products.

Anchor protein + Yoghurt

Recently we have found that there is an increasing amount of companies marketing their yogurt to be higher in protein. A few months ago, Yoplait brought out a x2 protein yoghurt, and now Anchor has introduced the protein + range.

When we take a closer look at the Anchor protein + yoghurts, the formulation is exactly same as the Anchor “Greek variety” yoghurts that have mysteriously disappeared from the shelf. So in actual fact, there has been no change in formula or change in the protein, just a change in the labelling. As the role of marketing is to entice you, it’s therefore critical to use the label reading guidelines to ensure that you choose an option that is the best choice for your health (<10g sugar and <10g fat per 100g).

The protein yoghurts, and in particular the flavoured varieties, do meet our label reading criteria. But when you take a closer look at the various flavours, the sugar content, despite just meeting <10g per 100g sugar cut off, is higher than the protein – despite the marketing claim of higher protein. So whilst we may think we are choosing the best option in terms of protein content, it is displaced due to the higher sugar content. This highlights that the unflavoured, unsweetened yoghurts are always going to be the best option.

Anchor Protein + powder

When choosing a protein powder its important to read the label, and use our label reading guidelines. Choose a protein powder that has at least 18g of protein per serve and <10g of sugar and <10g of fat per 100g.

When looking at the Anchor protein + range, the flavoured protein powders fall short of the 18g of protein per serve, and have >10g of sugar per 100g, making it not the most appropriate choice.  The natural unflavoured range, despite meeting the criteria of 18g of protein per serve, has >10g of sugar per 100g. Once again making it not the best choice. When comparing these products to the Celebrate High protein meal replacement powder (that doesn’t claim to be protein +) it has 27g of protein per serve, 8g sugar and 4g fat per 100g, making it much healthier option. The Protein 20 range, also from Celebrate, has 20 gm protein per serve, 4 gm fat and up to 4 gm sugar per 100 g.

Anchor protein + Milk

The Anchor protein + milk claims to be high in protein (as the marketing suggests). When comparing the protein content to a standard Calci-trim milk (yellow top), the Anchor protein + has 6.0g protein per 100ml, whilst Calci-trim has 5.8g per 100ml.

Although this is significantly higher than light blue milk which has 3.3g of protein per 100ml, the Anchor Protein + isn’t much higher in protein than the Calci Trim milk that we recommend. Therefore the Protein + milk should not be mistaken for a high protein alternative.

Take home message

This Anchor range demonstrates despite how the clever marketing is, you still need to look closely at a product and read the label fully to determine whether it’s a good choice or not.

Although the unflavoured protein + yoghurts and the protein milk are acceptable choices, they still do not replace a top-level protein, and can be extremely comparable to other products.

With this clever marketing it is important to recognise that ALL diary products are a second level protein. So, regardless of the marketing on front of the packet, it is critical to aim to get a top-level protein (meats or protein powder) with each meal.