I had no idea football quarterback Tom Brady was in the supplement business until someone told me about it. Sure enough, he has a website that sells various sports supplements and even exercise gear too. One of the products on his website is an Instant Whey Protein Isolate supplement. Is it better than other whey protein supplements? Who makes it? Is it worth the cost? These are some of the things I'll be looking at in this TB12 Protein supplement review.
The TB12 Protein Container
It was the container for TB12 protein that first grabbed my attention. The packaging is silver and gives the impression it's made from stainless steel. My guess is this is to give people the impression that they will be unbreakable, like hardened like steel if they use this supplement.
The container I saw had 1 pound of whey protein isolate (454 grams) and there were 21 servings per container. A serving (scoop) of Tom Brady Protein powder is 22 grams. This is a smaller serving size than other protein powders I've seen. More about that below.
TB12 Whey Protein Ingredients
The product label tells us it has 2 ingredients:
- Whey protein isolate (from milk)
- Sunflower lecithin
The lecithin supplies “a trivial amount of fat.” That means it’s a very small amount. The specific amount of fat is not given.
TB12 Protein Nutrition Information
According to the label seen at TB12Sports.com, 1 scoop of the protein powder is 22 grams. The container has 21 servings and the following nutrition information:
|Amount Per Serving||Percent Daily Value|
|Calories from fat||0|
|Total fat||0 g||0% DV|
|Total Carbohydrate||0 g||0% DV|
|Protein||20 g||40% DV|
|Calcium||10 mg||1% DV|
|Sodium||170 mg||7% DV|
I believe TB12 Sports is using the old version of the Supplement Facts label. This is evidenced from the smaller font size used for calories and the lack of information for Added Sugars. There is now a Daily Value for added sugars but this info is missing too. Information on potassium and vitamin D is also missing. I'm sure eventually the labeling will be updated as more companies adopt the standard.
As can be seen from the table above, each scoop (22 grams) of TB12 powder contains 20 grams of whey protein. To put things in perspective, there are 28 grams in 1 ounce so it's giving people a little bit less than an ounce of protein. By providing 20 grams of protein per scoop, TB12 is in line with many other protein powders.
The label also mentions each scoop has 2.5 grams of leucine. Leucine is one of the branch chain amino acids (BCAAs) along with valine and isoleucine. Leucine is a popular amino acid due to evidence it might improve muscle protein synthesis (muscle growth). The amount of leucine – 2.5 grams per scoop – is a respectable amount and within the “leucine threshold”, that is, the idea that older men might need more leucine (reach a threshold) to kick-start an anabolic effect.
A possible downside to leucine is however, is that due to its anabolic effects, some have speculated it may also play a role in cancer development. More research is needed to better understand how leucine effects tumor growth.
Who Makes TB12 Protein Powder?
The company is called TB12 LLC, where TB obviously refers to Tom Brady and 12 is his football jersey number. The senior vice president of the company is Jeffrey Surette who has an MBA from Harvard.
The company website – TB12Sports.com – lists this address 240 Patriot Place in Foxborough, MA 02035. This address corresponds to the TB12 Sports Therapy Center. As reported by the Boston Globe, the TB12 Sports Center is owned by both Tom Brady and his therapist, Alejandro Guerrero.
This however is not where TB12 supplements are made.
As can be seen from the canister, TB 12 Protein powder is manufactured in America by a Canadian dairy company called Agropur Inc. Agropur, is one of the top 5 dairy producers in North America. So, as I understand this, Agropur supplies the whey protein and some company in the US, puts it all together -container, label etc – and ships the product out to customers. It's common for most supplement companies to work like this.
What Is BiPro?
The label for TB12 whey protein states it’s “Powered by biPro.” What is that? Well, BiPro (Bi Pro) is a trademarked name for the whey protein isolate provided by Agropur Inc, the company that supplies the protein Tom Brady supplements use. As can be seen from the the website BiProUSA.com, it's a high quality whey protein that has no artificial ingredients, fillers or added sugars.
Whey protein supplements often come in 2 different varieties:
- Whey protein concentrate
- Whey protein isolate
What’s the difference? Well, whey protein isolate has a higher percentage of actual protein (usually 90-95%) compared to whey protein concentrate. It tends to be more expensive and has less lactose too. That’s not to say that whey protein isolate is always better though.
Remember, there is more to milk proteins then just whey protein. One can make the argument that the health benefits of whey protein concentrate might be better because it offers a more broader spectrum of milk nutrients than whey isolate. At the end of the day, what’s better depends on who you are and what your needs are.
Ironically while the bilPro website (BiProUSA.com) does state it is a “widely used protein for weight loss patients”, the TB12 packaging states it is not to be used for weight loss.
Does TB12 Protein Have Casein Protein?
No. The only protein in TB12 is whey isolate. Casein, the other main protein in milk differs from whey in a few ways such as:
|Whey Protein||Casein Protein|
|Generally more expensive||Generally less expensive|
|Mixes well||Mixes less well|
|Faster digested||Slower digested|
|More protein synthesis effects (more anabolic)||Less protein synthesis effects|
|Less anti-catabolic effects||More anti-cabolic effects|
As can be seen there are some difference between whey and casein proteins. While most take note of how whey protein tends to have more anabolic effects than casein, it's important to note how casein has more anti-muscle breakdown effects (anti-catabolic effects). As such, I often think a combination of whey and casein would be better than either protein isolated by itself. That is my two cents. Take it for what it is.
How Much Does TB12 Protein Cost?
When this review was created, 1 container of Tom Brady's protein powder cost $54. While I think that is a lot for protein powder in general, I believe it becomes more expensive when you look at the cost per scoop. Let's do the math and see.
Each container of TB12 has 21 servings. If we do the math, $54 /21 servings, comes to $2.57 per scoop.
Lets compare this to IsoPure Zero Carb Protein, which is one of the most popular protein powders on Earth. Isopure costs around $38 and has 44 servings per container.
Doing the same math, Isoprue costs $38/44 = 0.86 cents per scoop!
So, 0.86 cents per serving vs. $2.57 per serving.
That's a huge difference.
TB12 Protein vs. BiPro Protein
Remember that TB12 uses a trademarked brand of whey protein called biPro (BiPro). It turns out BiPro whey protein powder is the same thing as TB12 whey protein – and costs a LOT less.
Does TB12 Contain Lactose?
The product has no lactose. That's because BilPro protein (the brand of protein in Tom Brady's supplement) is lactose free.
TB12 Workout Gear
Tom Brady's website also has a variety of sports gear, including:
- Exercise bands
- Medicine ball
- Agility ladder
- Weighted exercise vest
- Vibrating foam roller
While I admit I was intruded by the vibrating foam roller, the one thing that was glaring at all these things was the price. They are all way over priced. Every single item on Tom Brady website can be purchased for a LOT less money elsewhere.
For example, the vibrating foam roller costs $150 on TB12sports.com but I saw one for less than $70 on Amazon
The exercise mat – or as they call it, “ TB12 Performance Mat” – is another grossly over priced item, selling for a whopping $80 on TB12Sports.com. A roll-up foam mat for $80? You can get an exercise mat for $20 at any local sporting goods stores. Amazon has them too in that range. I actually felt a little sorry for Tom Brady when I saw these prices.
Bottom line to all this is if you like to workout with Tom Brady exercise gear, great. Have at it. But, if seeing his name as you workout is not important to you, I'd advise you to save money and look elsewhere.
How To Return TB 12 Protein
Before you buy Tom Brady's protein powder, you need to be aware the product website (TB12Sports.com) states that “purchases of TB12™ Protein are final sale and may not be returned.” In other words, you CANNOT return the protein powder if you don't like it.
That’s pretty sad they don’t take returns.
Now for other products – like the exercise gear, it does appear returns are accepted. The company website has an online form where people have to enter their email address and order number. I did not see any phone number that people could call. Personally, I didn't like that. Tom makes a LOT of money.
He can afford to hire someone to pickup the phone.
Is TB12 Protein Certified?
Yes. TB12 Protein powder is NSF certified for Sport. Supplements that bear the NSF certification mean they will not cause an athlete to fail a drug test. Supplements that are NSF for Sport Certified are tested to be free of over 180 banned substances. NSF stands for the National Sanitation Foundation. Their website is NSF.org.
Is It Made In America?
While the company – Agropur Inc – that supplies the protein is Canadian, it does say TB12 protein is manufactured in America. But what about the other items – workout gear, hoodies, hats and workout journals? Are they also manufactured in the US? I can't say. When this review was created, no mention of country of origin was listed on the TB12Sports website.
TB12 Protein Side Effects
Like all whey protein supplements, this product is safe in healthy people. That said, one “warning” appearing on the packaging did get my attention: “Not intended for children under 4 years of age.” Under 4? I don’t think I’ve ever seen an age that young on any supplement before. Who is giving protein supplements to healthy 3 year olds?
Are they saying it's OK to use TB12 Protein in kids who are 4 years old? While protein isn’t going to hurt anyone who is healthy -especially the low amount in the TB12 – I can’t think of any reason to use a protein supplement in healthy kids.
Just let them eat food.
For those who are not so healthy or who have kidney or liver problems, I'd speak to a doctor, pharmacist or dietitian first.
Tb12 Protein Pros Cons
Here’s what I liked and didn’t like about TD12 Protein powder
|What I liked||What I didn't like|
|NSF certified for sport||Overly expensive|
|Uses a high quality whey protein from a respected company||Returns - on protein - not accepted|
|Can't speak to a person when returning products|
These are what I noticed when I reviewed the product. What is important to me may or may not matter to you. Take this for what it is.
Is TB12 Protein Powder Good?
I can't recommend Tom Brady TB12 protein powder. The main reason is the price. It's too expensive. The same thing goes for all the other stuff on the TB12 website too. It's just too expensive – sometimes crazy expensive. If you think you need a protein powder to compliment your workout, there are many quality brands out there to choose from that will provide more servings per container at a lower cost. Any powder providing 18-25 grams of protein per scoop will be just fine for most people.