Whey protein is the protein found in whey when the milk separates during the production of cheese. There are two kinds of protein present in milk; casein and whey wherein whey is the liquid part found in milk. During cheese production, cheesemakers separate the liquid form of whey.
Before coming up with the actual product, whey protein has to undergo various processing steps first until it becomes a powdered drink.
You might have seen some people use this as a supplementation before or after working out. Well, basically speaking, whey protein is the powdered drink that is often used as a meal replacement.
Whey on its own doesn’t have a pleasant taste. This is why almost all whey protein comes with a flavor.
Most especially for gym goers and bodybuilders, whey protein has been an essential part of their active lifestyle. This is because whey protein isn’t just protein itself. It also has a lot of purposes when it comes to fitness and wellness.
Benefits of Whey Protein
Whey protein is a perfect choice if you’re lacking some amount of protein to complete your daily macros. You can get from 25 to 50 g of protein per serving.
As mentioned above, whey protein comes with a variety of flavors. You can never go wrong with whey protein since aside from it being flavorful, it can also help you achieve your dream body.
Promotes weight loss
Most people think that whey protein is only useful for those who are trying to gain weight – wrong. Whey protein when used properly, could also help you lose fats. Again, you have to use it properly. Most fitness enthusiasts would also agree that this powdered drink could promote weight loss if and only if, you take full control when consuming it. Just like how you try to check out the nutritional label of the foods you buy, you also need to do the same with whey. Depending on your fitness goal, you need to look at the carb content, calorie content, and as well as the sodium content.
Boosts protein intake
Protein is an essential macronutrient. This is because it is considered a main building block of the body. It also is needed for producing and developing hormones, neurotransmitters, tendons, molecules, and even organs. Protein which is the main component of whey protein also has amino acids.
Well, our body also produces amino acid on its own. However, there are essential amino acids that we need to get from foods such as meal replacement, whey protein. Some studies suggest that both amino acid and whey protein are necessary for human growth.
Muscle mass production and strength increase
Muscle mass production is actually the most common benefit of whey protein. This is why this powdered drink is usually famous for those who are after aesthetics. So if your goal is to increase muscle mass, then it is best to consume whey protein either before or after a workout.
Some people would also suggest that you can get protein from other sources such as foods. Well, that is also true. However, if you’re lacking protein at the end of the day, whey protein could surely supply you with the right amount that you need. You can get protein from sources such as chicken breast, fish, and egg whites. But remember that including whey in your diet could also better the results.
Take note that you may also drink whey protein any time of the day. Since as suggested, this drink could be considered as a meal replacement so if you’re doing a protein diet, you can use whey protein as a substitute for snacks.
Other health benefits
Whey protein is not just for protein supplementation. But what’s good about whey protein is that it contains various beneficial nutrients too.
Due to the high content of amino acid, whey protein is also said to be useful in lowering blood pressure and blood sugar, lessens risks of cancer, reduces symptoms of stress and depression, as well as hepatitis. On the other hand, it also is good at improving bone mineral density and immune function most especially for patients who have HIV.
There are different types of whey; (a) concentrate, (b) isolate, and (c) hydrolysate.
Whey protein concentrate is low in carbohydrates and fat content. It’s protein content usually ranges from 30 to 90%.
Whey protein isolate contains 90% of protein or even higher. This type of whey is usually processed that’s why it contains less lactose and fats.
Whey protein hydrolysate is also known as “predigested” protein since it undergone the process of hydrolysis – a process that makes it faster for the body to absorb protein.
Among the three, whey protein concentrate is the most popular. Aside from it’s the cheapest, whey consumers consider it to be the most flavorful. It also contains most of the essential nutrients, these are why most gym goers would prefer it over the remaining two.
Possible Side Effects
Upon consuming whey protein, it is best that you follow the recommended scoops per day. There is a serving guide on the packaging itself or you may even consult your fitness coach if by chance you have one.
Keep in mind also that whey comes from milk. So primarily, people who are allergic to milk will most likely be allergic to whey as well.
If you are calculating your protein intake on a daily basis, you need to be sure you’re not consuming too much protein. If your protein intake is already high, it would be unnecessary to add some whey to your meals. Too much protein could also lead to some health issues such as kidney damage, liver issues, nausea, diarrhea, cramps, and flatulence.
Remember that’s it’s always a matter of trial and error. If you think whey protein concentrate doesn’t work for you, then you can try isolate and hydrolysate. But if it comes out whey protein isn’t suitable for you, then you can always go for foods that are rich in protein.