What is whey protein?
Whey protein is derived from cow’s milk and consists of a high quality protein powder that can be split into two separate types of protein:
- Casein ( roughly 80%)
- Whey Protein (roughly 20%)
Whey Protein vs. Whey Protein Isolate
- Whey protein isolate is the most pure as well as the most concentrated form of whey protein available. It contains around 90% or more protein and very little fat and lactose. Because it contains trace amounts of lactose, it is also a much better option for those who are lactose intolerant or who have an allergy to dairy products.
- Whey protein concentrate is not nearly as pure as whey protein isolate, and is comprised of anywhere between 29% to 89% protein, depending on which brand you buy (and believe me, there are TONS of different brands out there). Typically, whey protein concentrate or whey protein blends contain significant amounts of fat, lactose and cholesterol, which is why you’ll want to be somewhat selective with the brand that you purchase.
Why should I care about whey protein isolate?
- repair and build tired muscles
- strengthen bones
- have enough energy for endurance training
- properly metabolize energy that the body needs [source]
5 Natural Sources of Whey Protein
According to Muscle and Strength, the following are five sources of protein found in everyday foods:
- Lean Red Meat (20% protein)
- Chicken and/or Turkey (20% protein)
- Fish (20% protein)
- Eggs (6-8% protein)
- Cheese (10-30% protein, but high in fat)
Side Effects of Whey Protein/Whey Protein Isolate
Although whey protein is extremely beneficial, there are also some drawbacks.
UPSET STOMACH (bloating, gassiness, diarrhea, nausea, queasiness, etc.)
Why this might be happening:
- You’ve consumed a whey protein blend/concentrate that contains additives such as sucralose or lactose that your body is disagreeing with.
- You are lactose-intolerant.
- You’ve chugged down your protein shake too quickly before or after exercising at a moderate-intense level.
- Switch to a 100% pure whey protein isolate mix.
- Take whey protein isolate with water instead of milk.
- Consume a smaller amount of the whey protein isolate than what is recommended. Do this to start out and then gradually increase the amount of protein that you consume throughout the week/month, according to how your body feels. Consuming too much concentrated protein in one sitting can (and will) often lead to bouts of bloating, queasiness, diarrhea, nausea or other stomach discomfort if you’re not careful.
5 Benefits of Whey Protein Isolate
- Increased Physical Performance | Because whey protein isolate is the purest form of whey protein available, it is unsurpassed as a source of the essential amino acids required in the daily diet. Rich in Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs), athletes especially benefit from whey protein isolate because it is metabolized directly into the muscle tissue, replenishing your body post-exercise and rebuilding lean muscle tissue [source].
- Fast Post-Workout Recovery Meal | According to the International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN), making a protein shake and consuming it immediately following a fitness/endurance workout provides athletes with a healthy alternative as well as a source of nourishment.
- Stabilizes Blood Sugar | Whey protein slows down the assimilation of carbohydrates into glucose in the bloodstream, which is a good thing for those who are pre-diabetic [source].
- Raises Glutathione Levels | Whey protein enhances the immune system by raising the body’s levels of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that is produced by the body in order to protect cells and neutralize toxins [source].
- Encourages Bone Growth | Especially for women, making sure that you consume adequate amounts of protein can help to ensure bone growth, thus preventing osteoporosis as well as other injuries, such as stress fractures.
How much protein do I need?
Simple Whey Protein Isolate Shake
- (2) scoops whey protein isolate
- (1) TBSP nut butter
- (1/2) cup water
- Blend together and enjoy!
To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art. -La Rochefoucauld
- Energy First | Frequently Asked Questions About Whey Protein
- Wealthy Choices | Whey Protein Side Effects
- Muscle and Strength | Whey Protein Information & Product List
- Whey Protein Institute | Benefits of Whey Proteins