Whey Protein Health Benefits, Side Effects You Must Know: Whey protein is a widely used protein supplementation. They help you to make your body’s muscle protein synthesis better. Also, they also increase the growth of lean muscle mass when paired with proper exercise and diet.
Whey is a protein separated from milk during the formation of cheese. It’s essentially a by-product. It is a complete protein because it has all the nine amino acids present. It has numerous health benefits. However, there are side effects as well if you do not use it well. We will now talk about the health benefits, side effects and dangers of whey protein in detail.
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Not all protein is created equal. Some forms of protein, such as whey, are better than others. Whey protein contains an incredible range of essential amino acids, which are absorbed quickly. Numerous studies show that it can help you increase strength, gain muscle and lose significant amounts of body fat. However… whey is more than just protein. There are tons of other nutrients in there, some with potent biological effects. Whey protein has also been shown to have benefits for depression, blood pressure, blood sugar and even helping to treat symptoms of HIV and cancer.
In fact, it is one of the best studied supplements in the world. This is a detailed article about whey protein… what it is, how it works and how it can help you achieve your fitness and health goals.
What Is Whey Protein?
Whey protein is a mixture of proteins isolated from whey. Whey is the liquid part of milk that separates during cheese production. Milk actually contains two main types of protein: casein (80%) and whey (20%). Whey is found in the watery portion of milk. When cheese is produced, the fatty parts of the milk coagulate and the whey is separated from it as a by-product.
If you’ve ever opened a yogurt container to see liquid floating on top, this is whey. Cheese makers used to discard it before they discovered its commercial value. After being separated during cheese production, whey goes through a series of processing steps to become what people generally recognize as whey protein… a powder that is added to shakes, meal replacements and protein bars. Whey protein doesn’t taste very good on its own, which is why it is usually flavored. Chocolate, vanilla and strawberry flavored powders are popular.
It’s important that you read the ingredients list, because some of them can have unhealthy additives like refined sugar. Taking whey protein is a convenient way to add 25-50 grams of protein on top of your daily intake. This can be important for bodybuilders and gym enthusiasts, as well as people who need to lose weight or are simply lacking protein in their diet. Most flavored whey proteins are also pretty delicious and can be used to make healthy recipes (like smoothies) taste incredibly good. Whey is generally well tolerated, although people with lactose intolerance need to be careful with it. There are also some people who are allergic to whey.
Types of Whey Protein:
Let’s discuss Whey Protein types. There are three main types of whey protein. These are Whey Protein Isolate (WPI), Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC), and Whey Protein Hydrolysate (WPH).
- Whey Protein Isolate (WPI): Whey Protein Isolate generally contains at least ninety percent protein. They are processed to get rid of all the lactose and fat.
- Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC): Furthermore, Whey Protein Concentrate is another whey protein type. They have low carbohydrate and fat levels. The concentration level is inversely proportional to the protein percentage in them. Higher end concentrates have about 90 percent protein, whereas lower-end concentrates contain about 30 percent protein in them.
- Whey Protein Hydrolysate (WPH): This whey protein type is processed via partial hydrolysis. This is a necessary process for the body in absorbing protein. As a result, the WPH is known as the ‘Predigested’ whey protein form. So, the protein does not need the same digestion level as the other two. Also, it is used in infant formulas as they are digested better and have lesser allergen potential. Also, for the same reason, the WPH is used in medical protein supplements as well.
Fun Facts about Whey Protein:
Before we carry on with the aforementioned points, here are some fun facts on whey protein that will increase your knowledge.
- Whey is made up of immunoglobulins, alpha-lactalbumin, beta-lactoglobulin, and bovine serum albumin.
- Some of the many benefits of whey include weight loss and controlling cholesterol level.
- If used excessively, whey protein can cause stomach aches and nausea. However, when used in adequate dosage, it does not harm your body.
Health Benefits of Whey Protein:
Whey protein has several health benefits. However, not all benefits have been strongly backed by evidence. We will now talk about some of them.
Source of High-Quality Protein:
As mentioned earlier, whey protein is a liquid that separates from milk while producing cheese. Whey protein is high-quality complete protein. It is because it has all the nine essential amino acids. Besides, the protein is easily digestible than other proteins. Among the three different whey protein types, WPC is the cheapest and dominating in the market. Whey protein widely used by bodybuilders, athletes, and any person who wants additional protein source in their diets.
Helps In Losing Weight:
A popular way to lose weight is to consume more protein in your daily life. The protein helps you to lose fat, and in turn, weight in three ways. They boost your metabolism. As a result, your body burns more calories than before. Also, protein lessens your appetite. So, your calory intake is also decreased. Also, even when you lose weight, it helps you to grow muscle mass.
Supports Muscle Growth:
As I have said in the aforementioned point, whey protein helps in muscle growth. In general, your muscle mass lessens as you age. As a result, your body store more fat, and it leads to many diseases. But there is a way to prevent this event. Whey protein, coupled with proper training and diet aids in growing the muscle mass. It can do so as whey protein is rich in leucine, a branched chain amino acid. It promotes muscle growth more than any other amino acids. Although, you need to keep in mind, that if your diet and training is not right, no amount of add-ons such as whey protein will able you ever.
May Prevent Cancer:
The journal Anticancer Research recently published a paper. In it, scientists have claimed to found that regular use of WHC in cancer treatment showed positive results. However, this is subject to more extensive research.
The British Journal of Nutrition published a study, seventy overweight men and women for twelve weeks were subjected to whey protein and casein in two different groups. In this time, scientists measured their insulin and lipid levels among other things. After this period, the people who took whey protein supplements had lower cholesterol levels than the casein group.
May Lower Blood Pressure:
Hypertension or high blood pressure is a serious health issue. Whey protein can help you lower your blood pressure. It does with the help of lactokinins. Lactokinin is a component of whey protein that helps in reducing blood pressure in humans.
Helps In Curing Asthma:
In a recent study with eleven children, whey protein proved to be helpful in curing asthma. Scientists gave the children ten grams whey protein for a month. They gave it to them twice daily for a month. The whey protein improved their immune response to asthma.
Treat Type 2 Diabetes:
Impaired insulin function and high blood pressure result in type 2 diabetes. Insulin is a hormone responsible for stimulating the uptake of blood sugar. It also keeps the blood sugar within safe limits. Whey protein increases the insulin amount in your blood. Also, it also increases its sensitivity level. In this respect, whey protein is far superior to the other protein sources such as egg white and fish. In fact, it is similar to the antidiabetic drugs at this point. So, if you consume a whey protein supplement with a high-carb diet, it would keep your blood sugar under control and would fight type 2 diabetes.
May Reduce Inflammation:
Furthermore, whey protein helps to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is essentially your body responding to damage. Although it is helpful to you, it can cause issues in certain circumstances. Chronic inflammation may be a symptom to bad lifestyle habits or unnoticed health hazards. It can be harmful and a serious risk factor for you. In a recent study, scientists saw whey protein reduces C-Reactive Protein (CPR) in your body which is the main marker for inflammation.
May Help With Inflammatory Bowel Disease:
Inflammatory bowel disease is the chronic inflammation of the digestive tract lining. It is a relative term for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis as well. Scientists found that whey protein is useful in treating this condition in both rodents and humans. But keep in mind that further research is essential in this matter.
Increase Antioxidant Defenses of The Body:
Whey protein is rich in cysteine. Cysteine is an amino acid responsible for producing glutathione. Glutathione is the most important antioxidant in the human body. Antioxidants act against the body oxidation. As a result, it lessens oxidative stress. In turn, it helps to reduce aging and reduces the risk of several chronic diseases. So, consuming whey protein helps in achieving that effect.
May Help Reduce Hunger Due To Its Satiating Nature:
The fullness you get from eating a meal is satiety. Among the macronutrients, protein is by far the most satiating. Whey proteins, as you already know, is rich in protein. So, when you take whey protein supplements, it reduces your appetite.
Side-Effects And Dangers of Whey Protein:
Whey protein is particularly unusual as it does not have a natural equivalent. If you take it in proper amount with your diet, it can work wonders for you. However, many believe that it is not an ideal product due to its high protein content. Although this is not true, it is not all wrong either. The accepted dosage of whey protein is 25-50 grams per day, that is, one to two scoops. But some people consume it excessively, thinking their muscle would grow faster. However, nothing could be farther from the truth.
When taken in excessive amounts, whey protein can cause health issues. Some of these issues include stomach ache, bloating, nausea, headache, cramps, fatigue, diarrhea, and flatulence. Also, regular high dose intake of whey protein for long periods can result in acne.
You need to realize that just taking more amounts of protein does not mean you would grow faster. Your body can not process that much at once. So, be cautious, take only the proper amount and give your body time to grow.
These are the health benefits, side-effects and dangers of whey protein for you. If you think I have missed something, or there is something else you would like to see, please let me know in the comments section below. Also, ask anything you have in mind.
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