Whey protein comes from cow's milk and is one of the two types of protein that is found in cow's milk (the other protein is casein). Whey protein offers the most nutritious type of protein available in foods, which is why these supplements are so popular among body builders and weight trainers.
In order to get whey protein from milk companies use the same process that cheese companies do to produce cheese. Of course, companies producing whey protein stop the process at the point the whey protein is separated from the milk rather than continuing the process to make cheese.
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Whey Protein Production Process Without getting too scientific, whey protein is separated from the milk in a series of steps starting with whole milk. The casein is separated as is some of the milk-fat from the whole milk. This leaves liquid whey. After this, the process depends on the... more
Without getting too scientific, whey protein is separated from the milk in a series of steps starting with whole milk. The casein is separated as is some of the milk-fat from the whole milk. This leaves liquid whey.
After this, the process depends on the manufacturer. Some companies sell lactose free whey protein while others don’t. The companies that do remove the lactose then filter the whey protein from the lactose and any other ingredients that are remaining in the mild to leave pure liquid whey.
There are some companies that continue to put the whey protein through more processes, such as an ion exchange, but that simply depends on the manufacturer. The last step for all manufacturers is to remove the water from the whey protein so that whey protein powder can be produced and consequently sold in a supplement form.
To start with, there is no doubt that protein is extremely beneficial to the human body. Without protein humans would be unable to survive. This means that whey protein can provide the means to create amino acids in the body.
However, whey protein itself has never been used in human studies to prove the benefits that manufacturers purport for it. For example, some companies claim that whey protein can prevent cancer growth. There are no studies to back up this claim, not even animal studies!
It is important to note that there have been studies that show that whey protein is a great source of protein. In addition, there are ongoing studies, that won’t be published for several more years, to determine if whey protein can benefit general health.
Some of the benefits that whey protein does provide is for muscle health. Because amino acids are used for building muscle and protein aids in this process, whey protein can offer this benefit.
You do need to be careful however, as whey protein isn’t some miracle product that can make your muscles start growing exponentially. With the right exercise and a healthy diet, whey protein can offer a healthy benefit.
If you don’t exercise and eat right, then taking whey protein is both a waste of time and of money.
It is very rare for a protein deficiency to occur. There are many different foods that contain protein, but meat is the food with the highest levels of protein. Here are some foods that contain high levels of protein:
Whey protein isolate is whey protein with low amounts of fat. Whey protein concentrate is whey protein without the milk fat being filtered out. In addition, whey protein isolate has little to no lactose in it while whey protein concentrate is not lactose free.
As you can imagine, whey protein isolate is considered the best option for anyone who is using whey protein in order to build muscle and lose body fat. While milk fat is good for children, it isn’t so good for adults, which means you want to choose a product with the lowest amount of fat possible.
In addition, because whey protein isolate has less fat and low to no lactose that means that it has more protein than whey protein concentrate. Most athletes want the purest form of protein possible, which means whey protein isolate is the better choice.
Naturally, this also means that whey protein isolate is much more expensive than whey protein concentrate. If you have a budget issue, you will find that often whey protein concentrate costs about half as much as whey protein isolate.
There are many mixed messages about how much protein the human body needs. Whey protein is another form of protein, so you need to follow the guidelines set by the FDA. Don’t follow the guidelines set by supplement companies and/or sports nutrition companies, their bottom line is that they want you to use their products, the FDA isn’t trying to sell you anything!
According to the FDA men need no more than 62 grams of protein a day while women need no more than 53 grams of protein a day. This is 30% higher than the daily recommended dosage of the FDA and all that your body can tolerate without your liver and kidney being affected.
Supplement companies usually tell you to take triple or even quadruple doses of whey protein than the FDA recommends. It is up to you to keep your body healthy as supplements aren’t regulated by the FDA and aren’t required to provide you with studies to show proof of the benefits that they claim.
There is some truth to the idea that you will need a little more protein if you are exercising on a regular basis; however, this doesn’t mean that you need to triple or quadruple your intake, just increase it up to the 30% mark as recommended by the FDA. If you are a serious athlete or body builder talk to both a trusted personal trainer and your doctor to determine safe and effective amounts.
When you take more than the recommended amount of whey protein, then you can experience certain side effects. These side effects included:
If you don’t exceed the FDA recommendation for whey protein, then you shouldn’t experience any of these side effects, although sometimes stomach cramps are reported by individuals who start taking protein.
Because, as mentioned above, a protein deficiency is rare, this means that you are probably getting a good about of protein in your diet, unless you are a vegetarian or vegan. It is important to know how much protein you are getting in your food so that you know how much protein that you should take without it being harmful to your body.
Most whey protein manufacturers will tell you that taking whey protein is completely safe. However, new studies show that too much protein can damage the kidneys and the liver, especially after long-term use. This only applies to taking too much whey protein, if you take safe doses you shouldn’t have any health issues.
There is only one known drug interaction with whey protein and that is an interaction with Levodopa. Basically, whey protein prevents the body from absorbing Levodopa the way that it should. Levodopa is a drug that increases dopamine in the brain.
There are several other medications that whey protein MAY interact with. These medications include:
If you have any medical conditions or are taking any medication, you should talk to your doctor before taking whey protein. In addition, if you are nursing or pregnant, talk with your doctor to ensure that taking whey protein won’t negatively impact your unborn baby or newborn.
Children under the age of 18 shouldn’t take whey protein or other supplements with out a doctor's input. These are designed with adults in mind. Find whey protein options with the free supplement finder now!
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