Whey Protein is almost a household name for every gym-goer. We must have seen a big muscle guy drinking his protein shake for fulfilling his bodybuilding requirements. But, this is not it. One can consume Protein powder irrespective of the gender, people, who want to prepare a lean body or building muscle, or who wants to fulfil the protein requirements of his/her body.
It is an easy way to replace the whole foods in the form of Whey Protein because what matters is a complete protein and nutrients diet should go in our body for perfect bodybuilding.
Each type of protein is made by different methods and techniques; but not all protein created is the same!
One of the best and natural types of protein is Whey Protein that is much better than any other. It contains an incredible amount of amino acids that get ingested (absorbed) quickly.
Research and studies show that whey protein can help you increase strength, gain body muscle and shed a large amount of body fat. However, Whey is not just a protein. It is more than that! It contains various other nutrients and micronutrients, few with strong biological effects.
Indicatively, it is found to be the best-researched supplement on this planet. Let us move to the detailed information about Whey Protein – we will see what it is, how it works, and how it can assist you in accomplishing your desired fitness and health goals.
What is Whey Protein?
Whey protein is a blend of segregated proteins from whey, which is a by-product of cheese making. Milk has two main types of proteins: 80% casein and 20% whey. Whey is the liquid portion of milk that is separated, as a by-product during the cheese-making process.
If you have ever noticed the yoghurt container with liquid floating on the top layer, that liquid is whey. This top layer of liquid was usually discarded by the cheesemakers; until they came to know its commercial benefits.
After the separation of whey from cheese, it goes through various processing steps to form the product generally known as Whey Protein Powder. Protein powder can be used in different ways like protein shakes, protein bars, and you can prepare a meal from whey protein powder as well. Honestly, Whey Protein does not taste good if consumed on its own, which is why it often comes in different flavours. However, strawberry, Vanilla and chocolate-flavoured powders are popular amongst the fitness freaks.
Studies recommend checking the ingredients list before buying as it may have some unhealthy additives like refined sugar, or any artificial sweeteners and preservatives etc. Consuming whey protein is an easy way to include protein in your daily intake. It can be very beneficial for gym-goers, bodybuilders, as well to the people who want to lose weight or are looking to fulfil the protein consumption in the body.
Usually, the flavoured proteins are delicious and can be used to add in meals like pancakes, smoothies, or even can be used to make your favourite sweet dish. It is a never-ending list! All depends on how big foodie you are, wherein you start creating your way to remain fit without impacting your taste buds 😉
P.s: Although Whey Protein powders are usually tolerated by lactose intolerants as well it does not harm to be extra careful.
Benefits of Whey Protein Supplements in Boosting Protein and BCAA intake
We very well know that proteins are the building blocks of the human body. They help the body in the formation of tendons, organs, and skin; and also, hormones, enzymes, and various molecules in our body.
Proteins are gathered from amino acids (amino acids are smaller molecules linked together like beads on a string). Our body’s cell produces some of the amino acids whilst others are provided, by the food we eat. The ones that we should get from food/eatables are essential amino acids.
Proteins that provide all essential amino acids are the best, and whey protein is stacked with them. It is notably high in BCAAs (abbreviated as branched-chain amino acids) like leucine and cysteine. Leucine is the growth-promoting amino acid, and cysteine helps in boosting the levels of cellular antioxidants in the body.
Whey Protein is very effective at stimulating growth in humans that could be seen in the growing kids. For instance, human breast milk is 60% whey as compared to whey content in cow’s milk that is 20%. Yes, you heard it right! That is why a baby grows faster when fed with mother’s milk.
Types of Whey Protein
There are numerous types of whey protein, but the only difference lies in the way they are processed.
- Concentrate: Whey protein concentrate has 70-80% protein. It contains some lactose, fat, & has the best flavour.
- Isolate: Whey protein isolate has much higher protein content than concentrate. It is about 90% protein or maybe higher, but it lacks in other beneficial nutrients found in whey protein concentrate. It is also less in fat and has less lactose.
- Hydrolysate: Popularly known as hydrolysed whey, it should be pre-digested so that it can be absorbed quickly. It spikes the insulin level from 28-43%, much faster than isolate.
Whey Protein concentrate seems to be the best option amongst the others. However, many options are available online.
Because of the plenty of lactose and fat content in Whey Protein Powder, it tastes much better and is preferred by almost everyone. Also, the nutrient amount found naturally in whey protein makes it the first choice by many people.
However, if you have a problem in tolerating whey protein concentrate, but you want to emphasize protein whilst keeping low fat and carbs than whey protein isolate or hydrolysate is a better option.
Effects of Whey Protein Supplements on Muscle Strength and Mass
One of the top benefits of whey protein powder is that it helps in increasing strength and muscle mass.
It is popular amongst bodybuilders, fitness models, athletes, or the regular gym-goers who want to give a good shape to their body.
1. Building Blocks: The protein and amino acids in the whey protein powder, serves as building blocks for building lean muscle and also repairs when needed.
2. Quick Absorption: Whey protein is a fast-digesting protein powder. It typically takes 1-2 hours to get digested.
3. Anabolic Hormones: It increases the release of anabolic hormones that build body muscle and stimulates muscle growth
4. Leucine: It is implicated to be the only amino acid responsible for muscle growth and discards the old aged muscles for better functioning.
A lot of researchers concluded that the comprehensive protein intake in the body decides the muscle growth. It includes protein intake from food we eat and the supplements we take.
Whey Protein boost satiety and helps in Weight Loss
A moderate increase of protein will boost satiety and aid weight loss, through reduced energy consumption with fewer calories intake.
Studies show that including 25% of daily calories in protein reduce cravings by 60% and also lessen the desire for untimely and odd hours snacking.
If you want to lose weight, combine whey protein with weight lifting exercise for better impact on weight loss.
Effects on amount of Dosage intake
Generally, experts recommend 1-2 scoops of protein powder (approximately 25-50 grams) per day post-workout. However, it is better to follow the instructions written on the packaging.
Always check that if the protein content in your daily meals is already high, then adding whey protein on the top of present intake may be useless.
Additionally, eating excessive whey protein can cause nausea, irritability, dehydration, intestinal discomfort & indigestion, diarrhoea etc.
May Lower Blood Pressure
May help treat Type 2 Diabetes
Also, it may benefit from inflammatory bowel disease
The Bottom Line
Whey protein is one of the healthiest ways to add protein in your daily diet. It works excellent when taken after weight lifting or any rigorous exercise. It is considered as one of the best protein powders that is absorbed quickly and gives quick results more healthily.
For those who desperately want to lose weight and gain muscle without hampering their diet, whey protein seems to be the best option amongst all other proteins.