We all understand how important a healthy and balanced diet is to our overall health. Without proper nutrition throughout the day, our bodies won’t function the way we need them to. We wouldn’t be able to do the things we love and would struggle to lead a happy and healthy life.
With that said, some of us have a hard time getting the nutrients we need through our normal diet. In fact, some of us have an extremely fast metabolism that results in us needing to eat more macronutrients than the rest of us — which is quite difficult for some people to do regularly.
The good news is there are ways to help your body get what it needs without having to add an extra meal or two to your diet, and they’re called weight gainer shakes. There are a lot of different brands and formulas on the market today, but we’re going to break down one in particular.
What Is The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix?
Total Mass Matrix is a weight gainer shake brought to you by The Protein Works — also known as TPW. They’ve been dedicated to innovating the sports supplement market for nearly ten years, with their website officially launching in December 2012 — that’s a long time ago!
The Protein Works is home to hundreds of different products, including Creatine Monohydrate, Whey Protein, weight gainer shakes, Protein Powders, protein foods, baking ingredients, pre-workout and post-workout supplements, Amino Ccid powders, and much more. They truly have it all when bulking up and adding weight.
TPW prides itself on offering premium ingredients, genuine innovation, and insane-tasting products. They know they’re not the cheapest product out there, but they’re not trying to be — nor do they want to be. Instead, they genuinely want to help you gain weight the healthy way.
Before we dive into the Total Mass Matrix ingredients and supplement facts, we’re going to detail a little background information about weight gainer shakes, whether they’re healthy or not, how to take it responsibly, what to look for in one, and how much protein you actually need per day.
Are weight gainer shakes healthy?
Weight gainer shakes are healthy and can help you achieve your desired weight, so long as they’re taken properly and responsibly. You should also take into account the fact that not all weight gainer shakes are created equal — so the brand and formula are extremely important.
For the most part, a weight gainer shake is healthy if it’s being used as a supplement or addition to your normal, everyday diet. You shouldn’t underestimate the power of a well-balanced, whole food diet, but a weight gainer shake can help you add calories and protein to that normal diet.
With that said, you should never use a weight gainer shake as a meal replacement. This is when weight gainer shakes can lose their effectiveness. We absolutely need whole foods in our system, and simply replacing it with a weight gainer shake won’t provide the nutrients we need.
What are the five pillars of weight gainers?
When searching for a weight gainer shake, there are really five factors to consider when looking at the nutrition facts — calories, protein, carbs, dietary fiber, and fats. These are found in every weight gainer shake, but the amounts of each differ. Let’s take a closer look at each one.
- Calories – a unit of energy determined by the protein, carbohydrate, and fat content. Protein and carbs provide 4 calories for every gram, while fat provides 9 calories per gram.
- Protein – the building block of all life; protein helps the body with energy production, building muscle, strengthening bones, enhancing the immune system, and recovery.
- Carbohydrates – the body’s main source of energy, carbohydrates are broken down into glucose, which is then used to produce ATP (the energy messenger of the body).
- Dietary Fiber – a type of carbohydrate, dietary fiber is unique in that it isn’t digested by the body. Instead, it helps improve the digestive system and helps with weight management.
- Fat – while most people think negative thoughts when they hear the term ‘fat,’ there are also healthy fats that are essential to your diet. They’re stored in the body for protection, warmth, and energy.
Ensuring your body gets enough of those five nutrients is very important to daily health and function. If you’re struggling to — either due to a fast metabolism or an active lifestyle — a weight gainer shake can certainly help get your numbers up in a quick and easy fashion.
How much protein do you need daily?
One of the more misunderstood macronutrients in the human diet is protein — especially for those that work out and want to build muscle. When most people hear the term ‘protein,’ they immediately think to themselves, ‘more is better.’ The more protein, the more muscle you build.
The proper amount of protein needed each day is 0.36 grams per pound of body weight. For someone that weighs 150 lbs., that comes out to 54 grams of protein. For someone that weighs 250 lbs., that comes out to 90 grams of protein. That’s a lot less than what most people think.
Of course, lifestyle plays a major role in this as well — so does metabolism, age, gender, and many other factors. For the most part, those that live an active lifestyle should aim for around 0.7 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight — about twice as much as the normal amount.
What’s the best way to take a mass gainer?
There are plenty of ways to take your weight gainer shake, and it largely depends on your preference. With that said, it’s best to take it in between meals or, if you workout, 15-20 minutes after you conclude your workout. This is because it helps with the workout recovery process.
Since they come in powder form, you’ll need to add it to your choice of liquid. Most people put it in a blender with water or milk, depending on the flavor of the powder. Milk gives it a little more thickness — like a smoothie — and water will leave it a little thinner — it’s completely up to you!
One thing you’ll want to keep in mind is how many grams each scoop of powder is. The more powder you add, the more liquid you’ll need. If you don’t have enough liquid, you’ll get a shake that’s chalky with powder that hasn’t dissolved. With a lot of powder, you’ll have a lot to drink.
The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix Ingredients
Now that we understand a little more about weight gainer shakes and how they can help you gain much-needed mass, let’s take a look at the Total Mass Matrix formula and what makes it so special. First, we’ll break down the nutrition facts so you can see those macronutrient counts:
- Serving – 120g
- Calories – 475
- Fat – 11g
- Carbs – 64g
- Sugars – 15g
- Dietary Fiber – 6.4g
- Protein – 30g
As far as weight gainer shakes go, that’s a very good balance of macros. It has a high protein count but a lower calorie count than you would expect. In fact, more than half of the calories come from protein, which means this is the perfect addition to your workout recovery routine.
Now, let’s take a more in-depth look at the ingredients and types of nutrients used to get those macros — including the carbohydrate blend, protein blend, MCTs, and golden flaxseed.
As we mentioned above, carbohydrates are the body’s main source of energy throughout the day. It’s what your body turns to first and foremost when producing energy for your cells, which is why it’s important we eat enough of them each day. The 64 grams per serving is sufficient.
There are three main sources of carbohydrates in this shake — pure fine oats, dextrose, and maltodextrin. Let’s take a closer look at each:
- Pure Fine Oats – 100% natural Scottish oats that provide a great source of low-GI carbohydrates for sustained energy.
- Dextrose – a simple sugar that’s chemically similar to glucose. It’s made from corn and can quickly be broken down for energy.
- Maltodextrin – a simple sugar high on the glycemic index (GI). It’s made from corn, rice, potato starch, and wheat.
These three carbohydrate sources provide a good amount of energy throughout the day, but shouldn’t be taken in high doses. The 64 grams is safe, but you should be careful when taking multiple servings daily, especially if you have high blood sugar, diabetes, or insulin resistance.
The Total Mass Matrix formula includes a 2:1 carb to protein ratio that ensures proper use of both nutrients by the body. Much like the carbs, there are three main protein sources included in the formula — calcium caseinate, milk protein concentrate, and whey protein concentrate.
Let’s take a closer look at each one:
- Calcium Caseinate – derived from the casein in milk and provides a slow release of protein for sustained amino acid delivery.
- Milk Protein Concentrate – essentially powdered milk with the lactose removed. With both whey and casein involved, it provides a moderate release of protein.
- Whey Protein Concentrate – derived from the whey in milk and provides a fast release of protein for quick amino acid delivery.
Similar to the carbohydrate sources, there are both fast and slow-release protein sources available, which provides a healthy balance of what your body needs throughout the day. That means you won’t use up all the carbs or protein directly after consuming the daily shake.
Golden flaxseed, also known as linseed, is cultivated from the flax plant. It has been used for its health benefits dating back to 3,000 BC in early Babylon. In fact, King Charlemagne — King of the Franks — used to have a law that required his subjects to consume it during the 8th century.
It’s widely known for its omega-3 essential fatty acids (healthy fats), lignans (antioxidant properties), and fiber (both soluble and insoluble) — as well as protein. They can help improve cholesterol, lower blood pressure, control blood sugar, and help suppress your hunger.
Medium Chain Triglycerides
Most fatty acids you consume are either long-chain fatty acids, medium-chain fatty acids, or short-chain fatty acids. The shorter the chain, the more easily the fatty acids are digested in the human body. That means medium-chain triglycerides are a better source of fat than most.
MCTs are largely extracted from coconut oil because they make up more than 50% of a coconut’s fat content. The two most common types of medium-chain triglycerides are caprylic acid and capric acid. This type of fatty acid provides a lot of health benefits when consumed.
For example, MCTs can promote weight loss, act as a good energy source, reduce lactate buildup, can use fat for energy, fight yeast, and bacterial growth, and manage blood sugar levels.
Total Mass Matrix Dosage, Packaging, and Pricing
Total Mass Matrix comes in your typical weight gainer powder bag. It’s black on the front and back but has an eye-catching orange side to it. Most of the lettering is either white or orange for an attractive contrasting look and style. There aren’t a lot of claims, keeping a minimal style to it.
It’s available in a 2kg, 5kg, or 10kg bag, depending on how much powder you’re looking to stock up on. Each serving is 120 grams of powder, so there are approximately 16 servings in one 2kg bag. That means you’ll need two bags if you plan on taking it every day for one month.
Luckily for you, there are a variety of flavors to choose from. Total Mass Matrix is available in Banana Smooth, Chocolate Silk, Birthday Cake, Chocolate Mint Brownie, Cookies and Cream, Strawberries and Cream, and Vanilla Creme. They use natural flavors, so it tastes really good.
Each 2kg bag will cost you $40, which is a little expensive compared to others. If you act quickly, you can save $15 for a total of $24 — which is much more affordable. If you’re buying two bags, you’ll end up paying about $50 for a one-month supply of Total Mass Matrix.
Currently, the 5kg and 10kg options are out of stock.
Total Mass Matrix Pros vs. Cons
It doesn’t matter how hard you search or how optimistic you are, you will never come across a weight gainer shake that’s perfect. Even worse, they’re not all created equal, and they each come with their own unique set of pros and cons — making your purchase even harder.
Luckily for you, we’re going to detail everything we like and don’t like about Total Mass Matrix in a simple, easy-to-read pros vs. cons list. This will give you a brief overview of what to expect from this shake, helping you better decide whether or not this formula is the right one for you.
Let’s get started!
- Plenty of flavors to choose from
- 2:1 carb to protein ratio
- Has slow, moderate, and fast release protein sources
- Has both slow and fast carbohydrate sources
- MCT oil is a healthy fat that’s used as energy
- Golden Flaxseed has omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants
- Not a lot of calories, but enough to increase your daily count
- 30 grams of protein is more than enough for one shake
- Available and sold in over 30 countries
- Has a 97% rating with over 160 reviews on their website
- Some reports of it being hard to mix
- Likely need to add a lot of water or milk to mix well
- Can be expensive at around $50 per month
- Taste might take some getting used to
- Be careful with it if you have diabetes, due to the carbohydrate sources
- Calorie count is much smaller compared to other brands
- Should only take one serving to avoid an excess of protein
- No vitamins or minerals
- No additional ingredients to help with your workout
The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix Claims vs. Reality
Total Mass Matrix is an extremely effective and popular weight gainer shake available today. There’s a lot to like about this formula, including the 2:1 carb to protein ratio, the multiple carb sources, and multiple protein sources. This provides the body with a healthy balance of each.
The calorie count is perfect for some, but not enough for others. If you’re looking for something under 500 calories with high protein content, this is perfect. Of course, that means it’s a little low on carbs and fat. If you’re looking for something with more calories, it’s not the best option.
With that said, the additions of medium-chain triglycerides and golden flaxseed provide a good amount of healthy fats and fiber. So, while there isn’t a lot of fat content, they do provide you with a little of the good stuff. Overall, it has a high-quality balance of macronutrients per serving.
Of course, the flavor options have to stand for something, as well. You’ll have to find which one you like the most, but a lot of people seem to enjoy the Chocolate Silk. You might need a good amount of liquid to mix it, but that’s okay if you’re fine with enjoying a larger drink than normal.
Total Mass Matrix Competitors & Alternatives
Over the past decade, weight gainer shakes have become a hot commodity in the supplement community. People of all walks of life are turning to these macro-filled shakes to help them gain weight, increase their calorie count, and enhance their protein intake on a daily basis.
With that said, Total Mass Matrix by The Protein Works is far from your only option on the market today. There are so many to choose from, and you’ll have to find the one with the macros that fit your lifestyle the best. If Total Mass Matrix isn’t it, we have others you might enjoy.
Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs
Transparent Labs is the maker of many well-known supplements, from Transparent Labs Bulk to PhysiqueSeries Fat Burner. Transparent Labs Mass Gainer is also a popular option in the weight gain arena. If Total Mass Matrix didn’t have enough calories, carbs, or protein for you, Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs is an excellent option. It’s a little more expensive, but it gives you more bang for your buck. Overall, it’ll help you build more lean muscle mass in a clean and effective way.
Each serving is 200 grams, which is a little higher than Total Mass Matrix. It contains 790 calories, 14 grams of fat, 145 mg of cholesterol, 610 mg of sodium, 114 grams of carbs, 6 grams of fiber, and 53 grams of protein per serving. Of course, that’s not all it provides.
It also contains MCTs, coconut milk powder, and Creatine Monohydrate for a better workout. The carb sources are tapioca, oat, and sweet potatoes, while the protein source is whey protein concentrate. Each tub (15 servings) is $69, but you can save money by bundling 2 or 3 tubs.
Mass XXX by GNC AMP
Mass XXX by GNC AMP is a mass gainer with a similar macronutrient count when compared to Transparent Labs. The main difference here are the additional nutrients it provides, which are designed to improve your overall workout performance and recovery. It’s a true mass gainer.
Each serving contains 750 calories, 6 grams of fat, 100mg of cholesterol, 123 grams of carbs, 4 grams of fiber, and 50 grams of protein. It also contains calcium, iron, potassium, and sodium. It’s only available in one flavor — chocolate — and each serving is approximately 205g of powder.
In addition to the macronutrients, it contains a few proprietary blends. The Tri-MG Infusion blend has Calcium HMB and Betaine Anhydrous. The Creatine Matrix Blend has three types of creatine and additional amino acids. Finally, it has three additional key micronized amino acids.
Serious Mass by Optimum Nutrition
Serious Mass by Optimum Nutrition is easily one of the most recognizable weight gainers on the market today. It has a lot to offer and has the highest calorie count on this list. With that said, it’s the perfect option for those that lead an active lifestyle and have a super-fast metabolism.
Each serving, which is a whopping 336 grams of powder, contains 1,250 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 110 mg of cholesterol, 252 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, and 50 grams of protein. It also contains 13 different vitamins and 13 different minerals for a healthy balance.
If that’s not enough to get you interested, each serving also contains creatine monohydrate, inositol, L-glutamine, and PABA. Each 12-pound tub has 16 servings and will cost you $60, or $120 per month. It’s available in Chocolate, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Strawberry, and Vanilla.
Final Verdict: The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix
If you’re searching for a weight gainer shake to increase your calorie intake and add some mass to your body, The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix is definitely an option worth considering. It won’t have a lot of functional ingredients, vitamins, or minerals to help with your workout, but it has the macros.
The MCTs and Golden Flaxseed are certainly an effective addition to this formula and a big reason why we would suggest it to anyone. It might be a little better if it had some more calories, but it’s perfect for those that don’t need a lot of calories added to their normal, everyday diet.
If Total Mass Matrix isn’t for you, don’t hesitate to try some of the other options we mentioned, such as Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs, Mass XXX by GNC AMP, or Serious Mass by Optimum Nutrition. You can’t go wrong with any of those options, so long as you’re responsible.