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Can Expired Pre-Workout Make You Sick, Or Is It Still Safe To Use? Find Out Here!

Published by Kieran
Last Updated on July 28, 2022

Do Pre-Workout Supplements Go Bad?

Some pre-workout supplements will still be safe to consume after the expiration date, but it's more complicated than that. 

Supplements aren't cheap. 

Because of the wide variety and specific blend of ingredients, as well as the expertise needed to create them, pre-workout supplements can be expensive.

They're also not a supplement you regularly take, so you don't use up the entire bottle fast. 

So it's understandable that you want to make the most out of it and are hesitating to simply throw it away when it expires. 

Are Pre-Workout Supplements Still Good After Expiration?

You can still use pre-workouts shortly after their expiration date or use-by date. This is especially true for unopened containers.

As long as they're not off, they should still be safe. Although, they will not be as effective anymore.

The pre-workout ingredients lose their potency over time. 

Like other products, expiration dates on pre-workout supplements indicate the period of time where the contents will maintain their top condition and potency.

Although it may not be as potent, pre-workout supplements could still be okay to consume past the expiration date. This is only true if the container has been properly stored and the contents are not contaminated in any way. 

However, you should also avoid pre-workouts that have long expired.  

Also, there are some common ingredients used in some pre-workout formulas that go rancid, such as fatty acids or omega 3 oils or any ingredients that can absorb water. It's best not to consume expired pre-workouts that contain those.

We mentioned pre-workouts going rancid. Does that mean pre-workouts can go bad?

Do Pre-Workout Supplements Go Bad?

Yes, pre-workouts can go bad.

Pre-workouts can become spoiled with improper storage or because of the ingredients, as mentioned above. 

It's more likely to occur when the container has been exposed to moisture. 

Never try to consume pre-workout supplements that have gone bad. 

How To Tell If Pre-Workout Has Gone Bad?

Check the Smell

One of the best ways to tell if your pre-workout is still safe to consume is to check its smell.

If there's any unusual, especially foul, smell, it's best to throw just out the product.

If you feel like the smell changed, even if it doesn't necessarily smell horrible, it is still a better idea to just toss it.

A bad-smelling pre-workout simply means that the supplement has become spoiled.

If you can't tell while in its powder form, you can prepare a small batch and smell that.

Check for Mould

If any part of your pre-workout has visible mould, no matter how small, throw the whole thing out.  

Evidence of mould is a key indicator that the product should is not safe anymore and should not be used. 

Mould is dangerous because it contains bacteria. If you ingest any of it, you could get food poisoning. 

Check for Discolouration

While checking for moulds, check the colour of the products as well. 

If the product looks lighter or darker than usual or different in any way, it's a sign that your pre-workout has gone bad. 

If you notice discolouration, with or without mould, throw the product away. 

Check the Consistency

A bad, clumpy pre-workout supplement is a bad sign that the powder is not in its ideal condition.

Some small clumps or clumpy textures are normal. But a significant amount of larger clumps, or if the whole bottle became a single lump, indicates that your pre-workout isn't fresh anymore.

Check the Taste

If the product passed the previous checks or there weren't any obvious signs, and you decide to prepare it, taste a tiny amount first before consuming more.

It's important to try out a small amount first in case it is indeed spoiled so that you don't ingest enough to hurt you.

Check your Condition

Aside from the product's condition, you can also know if the pre-workout has gone bad based on your condition after taking it. 

If you couldn't tell if the pre-workout supplement had gone bad or you missed all the warning signs, and you took it. Check your condition afterwards.

Did it make you feel sick? Do you have a gurgling stomach?

If you feel anything weird at all, throw your product away and get some medical help if you feel like you need it. 

It's also possible that you don't get sick after, but if you feel like the supplement did nothing, or the effects aren't as they used to be, it may have gone bad. As mentioned above, pre-workouts can lose their effectiveness over time. So even if it didn't go bad, it's not worth taking anymore, so you might as well toss it and get some fresh ones. 

Health Risks Of Taking Expired Or Spoiled Pre-Workout Supplements

Even though it should generally still be safe to consume expired pre-workouts, it still has some risks. On the other hand, consuming spoiled pre-workout is just a bad idea. 

Possible Effects of Taking Expired Or Spoiled Pre-Workout Supplements

Gastric distress (Possible symptoms: constipation, bloating, reflux, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain and cramping)

Allergic reaction (Possible symptoms: irritated eyes and throat, chest tightness, and difficulty in breathing)

Food poisoning (Possible symptoms: nausea, vomiting, watery or bloody diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and cramps)If you experience any of these after taking a pre-workout, even if it's not supposed to be expired or spoiled, it's better to seek medical help immediately just to be safe.  

Related Questions

How Long Will Pre-Workout Supplements Last After Being Opened?

Unopened pre-workouts are designed to maintain their quality until their expiration date.

But once opened, most pre-workouts will be in their peak condition for 8 to 12 weeks (or until the expiration date if it comes first)

How Long Will Pre-Workout Supplements Last After Mixing?

Prepared pre-workout supplements will generally stay good within 12 hours. 

They're meant to be consumed shortly after mixing, so it's best if you do so. 

You can technically put it in an air-tight container and refrigerate it, but some of the ingredients will break down, lose effect, and even go bad after being exposed to moisture, aka when you add water to it.

How To Prevent Your Pre-Workout From Going Bad

It's such a waste if your pre-workout supplement goes bad before it even reaches its expiration date or supposed shelf life. 

To prevent that, do the following:

  • Don't break the vacuum seal until you're ready to start using it. The earlier your open the container, the earlier the day that the product goes bad will come.  
  • Store them correctly in a cool, dry place away from direct contact with sunlight. It's also crucial to keep them away from moisture. Even a bit of water may cause clumping, mould and even bacterial growth.
  • Seal the lid tightly after use. Make sure to close the lid tightly to prevent any moisture, air, and bacteria from contaminating and ruining the product. It's ideal for placing them in an air-tight seal.
  • Leave the Desiccant or Silica Gel packet that it comes with inside the container. Those packets are there to absorb any moisture and prevent your product from going bad.
  • Mix, shake, or stir the contents of the tub regularly. Doing any of these will prevent the product from clumping. 

Final Words

When in doubt, throw it out. 

It may feel like you're wasting money throwing out a product you bought but think of it the other way. You saved the money you could've spent on treatments and medicines if you took an expired pre-workout supplement and got sick. 

Hope this article helped. See you on another one!

About the author
Published by Kieran
A star athlete during his school days, Kieran quickly excelled at sports and in particular; football. Kieran's true passion lies in home exercise equipment, and so was was built as a source for all of Kieran's thoughts to be put down on a medium. Here he guides you through various nuances of working out at home, tips, guides, reviews and more.The only other thing Kieran enjoys more than working out, is writing about it.
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