Whey protein concentrate has been known to be an excellent source of easily digestible protein for people of all ages, from babies all the way to seniors. The health benefits of whey protein concentrate are many. In this blog post, we will try to cover as many of the health benefits as possible, as well as explain in further detail some of the most important benefits.
When you think of whey protein, what comes to mind? Most people will usually think of body building or loosing body fat/weight loss, but whey protein, specifically whey protein concentrate, goes whey (get it?!) beyond the muscle building and fat loss benefits.
There are many scientific studies that have been done on the benefits of whey protein concentrate. But first, let's understand what whey protein is?
Whey protein is one of the two proteins found in milk. The two proteins found in milk are whey and casein. When using milk to make cheese, a coagulant (renin) is added, which separate the milk into curds (casein) and a water-soluble part of the milk which is the whey.
Absorption of Whey
Whey protein is absorbed faster than other forms of protein which makes it a very easily digestible protein source that your body can utilize.
Benefits of Whey Protein
In Brief, here are the health benefits of whey protein. We will also go into a bit more detail on some health benefits that are important to understand.
- Supports Immune System
- Supports an optimal metabolic rate
- Aids in growth and repair of muscle tissue
- Supports bone health
- Support the growth of beneficial gut bacteria
- Excellent Source of BCAA's (Branch Chain Amino Acids)
- Supports energy levels
- Speeds up recovery from exercise
- Promotes muscle strength and endurance
- Improves protein synthesis after exercise
- Aids in fat burning
- Stimulates Glutathione production in your body (powerful antioxidant that protects your cells and keeps them healthy)
One of the many great benefits of whey protein is that it can provide your body with large amounts of the amino acid L-cysteine, which has the ability to alleviate many debilitating conditions such as diabetes, as well as deficiencies that appear as we age. Whey protein has all essential amino acids which play a key role in improving and maintaining optimal levels of health. These essential amino acids are needed by our bodies more and more as we age, and to recover from physical stress (after a workout), illness or injury.
There is strong scientific evidence that whey protein helps maintain skeletal muscle mass. Studies suggest that whey protein may benefit older individuals and women after exercise. There is also strong evidence that in healthy young men, whey protein increased blood levels of essential amino acids and the creation of muscle protein. Whey protein is considered by experts to be a great protein source.
Appetite Control & Body Fat
There is also good scientific research showing that whey protein is effective in regulating appetite and body weight. It will help the body feel satisfied for a longer period of time after intake, which helps prevent overeating.
Whey protein is known to be rich in the amino acid cysteine which is needed to make glutathione (GSH) in our bodies. Glutathione is one of the most powerful antioxidants that our cells utilize to stay healthy. Low levels of GSH contribute to excessive oxidative stress, causing free radical damage in our cells that may result in various health debilitating conditions, such as impaired recovery from illness and injury. A lack of GSH will also impair recovery from exercise.
Our body has natural defense mechanisms in place to minimize free radical damage, but in order for those natural defense mechanisms to work at their best, they need assistance from various foods that will deliver certain nutrients needed to work at its optimal levels. Whey protein is one of those foods that helps build up our natural defense mechanism to minimize free radical damage.
Whey protein has various naturally occuring whey fractions such as immunoglobulin, lactoferrin, glutamine, and other peptides such as beta-lactoglobulin, lysozome, and alpha-lactalbumin, known in study reviews to have various immune system benefits. Lactoferrin is an iron-binding glycoprotein known to have powerful immune system functions. Lactoferrin is able to chelate iron , which is an essential element of many microorganisms. This makes lactoferrin known to have powerful antiviral and antimicrobial properties.
Immunoglobulins are also known as antibodies in your blood. Antibodies are made by the immune system that protect your body from bacteria, viruses, fungus, animal dander, or cancer cells by attaching themselves to foreign substances so that your immune system can destroy them. If you have low levels of antibodies, your chances of developing infections and/or illness will increase.
Blood Sugar Balance
There have been various studies done on the impact on blood sugar and insulin with the intake of many protein sources, and whey protein has been found to reduce blood sugar in both healthy and those individuals suffering from type 2 diabetes.
Muscle Growth & Improved Athletic Performance
In terms of muscle strength, whey protein has been studied for promoting muscle growth and improving athletic performance and there is good scientific evidence showing that whey protein may benefit both men and women after exercise in improving protein oxidation and blood levels of essential amino acids. Short term studies suggest that whey protein increases muscle mass and strength.
Whey protein may also have benefits for people with cancer, but limited research has been done and further study is needed before conclusions can be made.
Whey protein also include a long list of enzymes, growth factors, nutrient transporters, decease resistance factors, and more.
So as we can see, whey protein has many health benefits that go way beyond muscle building and fat loss. Of course, the higher quality protein you choose the higher chances you will have of getting more of these incredible benefits discussed here. Make sure and always choose a whey protein that is...
- 100% grass fed on pesticide free grass
- minimally processed
- No fillers
- No artificial ingredients of any kind
- No artificial sweeteners of any kind
- No added sugars that affect your blood sugar levels