I wanted to provide some information regarding when a supplement is ready to be tossed out. You should always check expiration dates, as they are the best indicator to judge when a product has expired. However, you could run into cases where a supplement’s expiration label isn’t there or is obscured.
Discoloration and Clumping
If anyone has ever opened an expired supplement, they will know the sight I am about to describe. Imagine that you are about to twist open the container of a supplement that you haven’t used in a while. You expect to see a bunch of powder that is all ready to be scooped up. Instead, you are treated to the horrifying sight of a bunch of dark colored clumps. Expired supplement powder actually resembles what would happen if someone was to pour water into your container and then close it off. This sight can be shocking to anyone but if you see it, you only need to do one simple thing: throw it away. I’ve been in desperate times and have tried to use a clumpy supplement, it didn’t work well. I was the person who tried to get those clumps broken up in any way possible. I had tried a sharp knife and an ice pick (almost stabbing my fingers in the process) and was finally able to break up a few chunks in a cup. As you have probably pictured, my mixing attempts were a workout in itself. First, I couldn’t get the giant clumps mixed ups so I had to start mashing my own cup. Many small waves of water cascaded over my kitchen as I was smashing a cup like a crazy person. After my efforts, I finally had a mixed up drink that probably never should have even been made. I was able to complete my workout with a bit more energy but it didn’t come close to that supplement in its prime.
This is probably one of the easier signs to recognize, as it will only take one time. Supplements tastes vastly different and taste itself is subjective but we all know the difference between good and really bad. I remember having an energy supplement that was green apple that I loved. Apparently, I didn’t love it that much because I found a container of it in the back of my supplement closet. I was so excited to get some energy from this delicious green apple product that I didn’t see it has expired. When I took my first drink, all I could taste was water mixed with pepper. I’m not sure if there was actual pepper in that pre workout but it was not the green apple taste I had wanted!
Stops Being Effective
This is something you will have to assess with capsules, more than powders. If a supplement has stopped doing what it is supposed to, it could mean that it has expired. Sometimes, it can be impossible to find an accurate expiration date on your container, I’ve been there. I find that, if I can’t remember if a supplement is expired that means I won’t take it. With capsules, it is tougher to know if something has truly expired. If you try your old standby supplement and find it isn’t the amazing experience it once was, the potency of that supplement may not be there anymore.