Whey protein – harm or benefit?

Whey protein – harm or benefit?

Wanna know what the modern science thinks of powder whey protein and should you really use the whey protein? Then we present to you all the truth abou

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Wanna know what the modern science thinks of powder whey protein and should you really use the whey protein? Then we present to you all the truth about whey protein.

Whey protein hasn’t been the nutrition element only in bodybuilding for a long time now, it’s now a mainstream product and it’s a part of healthy and active lifestyle.

 What is the whey protein? 

Whey protein is a byproduct of cheese production, which is sold as a food supplement as a water-soluble protein powders and cocktails. Several dozens of years ago the whey protein was being thrown out as a production waste by cheese producers.

Every time we eat some protein, our organism uses 20 amino acids (which are the separate protein components) to restore the bones, muscles, and almost all organism tissues. If the source of protein has all 9 essential amino acids (amino acids, which should get into the organism along with the food),then this protein is called a «complete» protein.

«Complete» proteins are such products as meat, milk products, eggs. On the other hand, the majority of plant proteins is called «incomplete» proteins, because they lack one or several essential amino acids. Whey protein is classified to the «complete» proteins, it contains all necessary amino acids, it is also quickly absorbed by the organism. Whey protein is an absolute champion of the speed of absorption, it’s far ahead of all other types of «complete» proteins.

Advantages and pros of the whey protein 

Despite the fact that whey protein can’t replace the natural unprocessed diet, it still can be useful for the people, who need the additional source of the protein of high quality.

Benefit, advantages and pros of the whey protein are extremely broad, they are referred not only to aesthetic aspects, but also to the health at large. Here’s the small list of 10 properties, which argue in favor of whey protein:

  •         Weight loss
  •         Helps in increasing the muscle mass
  •         Assistance in cancer treatment
  •         Increases glutathione (one of the most important antioxidants, which is produced by our organism)
  •         Reduction of the symptoms of HIV-infection
  •         Decrease of triglycerides (neutral fat, form of fats’ storage in the human’s organism)
  •         Decrease of «bad» cholesterol
  •         Increase of function of immune system
  •         Increase of performance in sport
  •         Reduction of time of rehabilitation and overtraining symptoms

Various amino acids have various functions in the human’s organism. Whey protein contains a lot of ВСАА (branched-chain amino acids). Such amino acids include valine, leucine and izoleucine and there are more of these amino acids than any others in the muscle protein of human’s organism. Leucine plays very important role in the protein synthesis, this molecule is a special anabolic, which stimulates the growth of phosphorylation inducers. Amino acids BCAA are important in muscles restoring and preserving, they help to stimulate the additional muscle growth and they will protect you from the loss of muscles in case of low-carbohydrate diet, which is aimed at the weight loss or during the cutting.

Another useful advantage of the whey protein is that it increases the level of glutathione. Glutathione is one of the most important matters in our organism! Glutathione is a very powerful antioxidant, which neutralizes the negative influence of free radicals. Glutathione is made of three main amino acids – cysteine, glutamic acid and glycine. However, the exact mechanism of why the whey protein increases the level of glutathione is unknown, but majority of scientists thinks that it’s connected to relatively high amount of amino acid cysteine in the whey protein.

If you look at the list of useful properties of whey protein from above, then you’ll see that the majority of those advantages (help in cancer treatment, HIV, reduction of rehabilitation time etc.) as a rule is connected to the increase of glutathione production.

Harm and cons of the whey protein 

As a rule, most of complications, which are connected to whey protein consumption, come in the form of digestive disorders, such as bloat, abdominal distension, headache, seizure and fatigue. None of these side effects of powder protein are dangerous for life and if you feel any of these symptoms, then they are most likely are caused by artificial sweeteners or because of lactose of whey protein.

The biggest harm and con of use of whey protein lies in the fact that too much protein is bad for kidneys. High-protein diet can aggravate the existing problems with kidneys, however this has nothing to do with healthy people. If you don’t have kidney disorders, then you don’t have to worry about higher consumption of protein.

 Types of whey protein 

If you think of purchase of whey protein, then the first question you have is «why is there so big difference in price policy of various protein supplemenst?».

There are three main types of whey protein: (1) whey protein concentrate, (2) whey protein isolate and (3) whey protein hydrolysate. The differences among these three types are the way of processing and filtration of the protein, therefore the amount of pure protein without any other particles of milk products, such as fat, lactose (milk sugar) and various immunoglobulins is also different.

  1. Whey protein concentrate (WPC) — this is the least processed of the three, containing anywhere from 55 to 89% of whey protein. Other 11-45% are fats, lactose and various useful peptides such as alpha-lactalbumin and immunoglobulin. As a rule, it’s the cheapest of three.
  1.   Whey protein isolate (WPI) — this has the highest concentration (90%) of whey protein and has the least amount of carbohydrate and fat as lactose. This preserves many useful properties of a concentrate. Isolate’s manufacture is more expensive.
  2.   Whey protein hydrolysate (WPH), also called hydrolyzed whey protein — is highly processed in that is goes through a process that breaks down enzymes so that the protein is easier to digest and quicker to digest than other forms of whey protein. It consists of pure protein for 99%. This is the most expensive one of three types however, it tastes the worst.

When is it necessary to take the whey protein? 

Since the whey protein is quickly absorbed, the only time you need to take the whey protein is right after the training. Multiple investigations prove that in comparison to other types of protein, the whey protein after the physical activity far stronger pushes the protein synthesis, stimulates the muscle growth and decreases the cortisol level. In any other time, you should prefer natural, unprocessed sources of protein.

Nevertheless, if you still have desire to quickly drink a cocktail during the day, you can add the nuts, avocado or a little of fish oil there in order to slower the protein digestion. Combination of oil can slower the digestion of the whey protein, thereby keeping the sense of satiety for a longer time and decrease excessive appetite and keep the normal level of insulin longer.