BSN is a leader when it comes to sports nutrition and their wide range of products make them a very popular choice among every type of consumer.
Their flagship protein blend BSN Syntha-6 is a go-to supplement for many who desire to meet their protein needs, and more. But the flavor and consistency are what really draw a lot of people in because Syntha-6 is not a pure “whey protein”. There are additional ingredients which help make each one more delicious than the average “whey-only” powder.
So, if you’re looking for pure whey protein with few ingredients, then Syntha-6 isn’t ideal for you. However, it does contain a quality protein blend which research shows to be very beneficial due to the fast and slow-digesting protein combination. (1)
We’ll be reviewing a few of BSN’s Cold Stone Creamery series of flavors which are quite different than the traditional Syntha-6 flavors. But, we’ll also review one flavor from the original series, one from the EDGE Performance series, and one from the Isolate series.
Now, it’s important to remember that taste is subjective and you’ll really have to try some out for yourself. However, we can give you our best opinions on each flavor…
Note: To achieve the desired flavor and consistency, it’s highly recommended to mix the recommended amount of cold liquid to powder ratio. If you put too little liquid then you’ll get a sludgy consistency, and too much water will drown out the flavors and creaminess.
You can use either water or milk (dairy or plant-based) depending on your preference but a milk-type product will give a creamier and sweeter shake especially if you use milk with natural or added sugar.
BSN Syntha-6 Ingredients & Nutrition
Macro/micronutrient, vitamin, and mineral amounts are very similar between the Cold Stone Creamery and original flavors. The Edge and isolate versions have a different profile so we’ll provide the nutrition information for each, below our list of reviewed Syntha-6 flavors. (Check your Daily Macros amount)
Cold Stone Creamery – Germanchokolatekake
Does it taste like German chocolate cake? Well, it’s pretty delicious and it definitely has a chocolatey, coconut-like flavor. There are few complaints from most people (and none from us) and even if it doesn’t taste exactly like cake, it’s pretty darn close. The powder has cookie crumbs and cocoa for flavoring.
Our flavor Rating: 8.5/10
Cold Stone Creamery – Mint Mint Chocolate Chocolate Chip
When you mix this flavor with the right amount of cold water or liquid of your choice, it tastes very close to the ice cream. It’s a very refreshing flavor and you won’t be disappointed if you like mint chocolate chip. Each serving has cookie crumbs for an additional exciting element to make the shake really authentic.
Our flavor rating: 8.25/10
Original Syntha 6 – Chocolate Milkshake
The original flavors of Syntha-6 are all pretty delicious and it’s what BSN is known for when it comes to their protein options. Their chocolate milkshake tastes almost identical to chocolate milk. And it has a creamy texture which makes it much more enjoyable to gulp down your daily recommended intake of protein every day.
Our flavor rating: 8/10
Syntha-6 EDGE Vanilla Milkshake
Now truthfully, the vanilla would probably taste great from any of BSN’s series of protein powders. But vanilla is a staple for many people because it’s such a versatile flavor. You can literally mix it in anything and add additional ingredients for a satisfactory shake.
The vanilla is smooth and creamy and tastes about as good as you can get for a vanilla-flavored protein. You’ll really look forward to your shakes with a nice vanilla milkshake flavored treat that fuels your muscles.
Our flavor rating: 8/10
Syntha-6 Isolate – Strawberry Milkshake
Who doesn’t like a refreshing strawberry milkshake? BSN did a pretty good job with their strawberry milkshake flavor and it’s a fan favorite. It’s a great choice when you want to try something other than chocolate and vanilla but still want to stick to a traditional flavor.
The powder does taste like strawberry and it’s got the right amount of sweetness when you mix the right amount to a liquid.
Our flavor rating: 7.75/10
Each line of Syntha-6 will vary when it comes to the ingredient profile.
Syntha-6 Cold Stone Creamery and Original
A serving consists of whey protein concentrate, whey isolate, calcium caseinate, casein, milk protein isolate, and egg albumin.
The concentrate and isolate are fast-digesting proteins which means they are more effective for initial protein synthesis. While the remaining proteins sources are slower-digesting and are more effective for prolonged protein synthesis. (2)
And casein contains more glutamine which is the most abundant amino acid and it’s beneficial for the recovery process and reducing muscle soreness. But other benefits include intestinal and immune health which is why glutamine is an important nutrient. (4, 5)
Additional ingredients include soy lecithin, natural and artificial flavors, medium-chain triglycerides, sucralose, and acesulfame potassium to name a few.
A serving contains:
- 200 calories
- 6g fat (1.5g saturated)
- 65mg cholesterol
- 140mg sodium
- 15g carbs
- 7g fiber
- 3g sugar (1g added)
- 22g protein
Syntha-6 EDGE Performance Series
The EDGE series protein blend is slightly different than the Cold Stone and original formula. It contains hydrolyzed whey which is an advanced and faster absorbing whey and there’s no egg albumin as a protein source. (6)
Additional ingredients are similar but you’ll notice the nutrition facts are a bit different with less of almost everything when compared to the Cold Stone and original Syntha-6 but the EDGE series does have 2g more of protein.
A serving contains:
- 150 calories
- 5 g fat (1g saturated)
- 50mg cholesterol
- 190mg sodium
- 6g carbs
- 1g fiber
- 2g sugar
- 24g protein
- 15% calcium and 10% iron
This formula contains whey and milk isolate which means there are much fewer protein ingredients than what the other series have.
Isolate goes through an additional process to filter out fats and carbs which results in a 90% protein source. This is beneficial for people who suffer from stomach issues when consuming plain whey or dairy-based products. (7)
The formula also has fewer ingredients overall, although you still have the additives, plus the natural and artificial flavors, with sucralose and acesulfame potassium for sweetness.
A serving contains:
- 140 calories
- 2g fat (0.5 saturated)
- 10mg cholesterol
- 150mg sodium
- 6g carbs
- 1g sugar
- 25g protein
- 30% calcium and 4% potassium
Syntha-6 Protein Blend Benefits
Protein is an essential macronutrient for building and repairing body tissue. So when you’re training hard in the gym and breaking down muscle tissue, you need a sufficient daily supply of protein. Now, it’s ideal to get your main protein sources from foods. But… protein powders definitely have their place in a diet regime.
Since whey absorbs quickly, it’s a great protein for immediately following an exercise and anytime during the day really.
Casein protein is ideal for supplying the muscles with nutrition overnight when you’re getting some shut-eye since it’s a slower-release protein.
Protein is just as important for building strength as it is for increasing the size of muscles. And protein not only improves strength when a consistent and intense training program is implemented. But aerobic and anaerobic power is also increased. (8, 9)
Protein is an essential nutrient for helping you feel full which prevents overeating and this also helps the weight loss process.
“Protein is key to promoting satiety, an important consideration for athletes who are often fueling their bodies for long stretches of time,” said Kate Machado, MS, RDN, a sports dietitian at the University of San Diego. (10)
So, a blend of protein will be ideal for encouraging satiety.
How To Maximize Protein Synthesis
You’ve probably heard that there’s a “window of opportunity” to supply your muscles with nutrition to prevent missing out on gains… Well, the theory is not at all far off. In fact, one study says that anabolism is increased for three hours following the consumption of protein after a session of resistance training. (11)
And an ideal post-workout nutritional strategy is to consume a whey shake with at least 3-4g leucine and simple carbs like maltodextrin and glucose to promote maximum protein synthesis. (12)
Amino acids are also very important for stimulating protein synthesis and a good amount is naturally-occurring in protein supplements.
How Much Protein Do I Need?
This will vary between each individual based on age, gender, height, weight, goals, and activity level. And we have a convenient protein calculator to do all the guesswork for you.
But recent research suggests 0.4 g/kg/per meal spread out over at least four meals is sufficient; which should equal a minimum of 1.6 g/kg/day.
An upper daily limit of 2.2 g/kg/day spread over four meals is also appropriate in certain instances, which equals a maximum of 0.55 g/kg/meal. (13)
Who Should Use Syntha-6?
If you’re trying to put on muscle and gain strength, while improving your overall physical performance capabilities, then you can use Syntha-6 protein. However, your goals will determine which series of protein from BSN you should consider.
If your focus is mainly gaining muscle mass, then go with the higher-calorie Cold Stone Creamery options or the original series of Syntha-6. They have more nutrients per serving and the additional calories will help you to remain in a caloric surplus which is necessary for making big gains.
For strength and performance, any of the Syntha-6 options will serve you well in your endeavors.
But if you have a sensitivity to dairy products, then the isolate will be the best option since it contains minimal to no lactose. (14)
BSN Syntha-6 protein is a viable supplement for those looking to maximize results. It may not be the best all-around option because there are artificial substances but if you can look past that, it’s hard to go wrong.
The flavors options are great with a nice variety to choose from but you’ll have to try them out for yourself to see which one suits you best. If you like a certain flavor in another product, then try the same flavor in Syntha-6.
There’s no one best flavor but each series of protein will have something unique to offer according to your goals and taste.