Whey Protein: Uses, Side Effects, Dosage, and Benefits

The vast majority of scientific research supports the conclusion that people who are engaged in exercise and sport regularly require more protein, either in their diet or via supplementation than people who are not engaged in heavy and regular exercise. This helps them to achieve a positive net protein balance, which means giving the body enough protein which body wants to prevent lean tissue loss also protein helps in recovering tissues and muscles which are cracked during the workout

What is Whey Protein?

Whey protein is a mixture of water-soluble proteins extracted from whey, the liquid material left behind in milk during cheese production is known as WHEY.
                                                                                                             

Benefits of WHEY protein

Exercise stimulates two actions in the muscles simultaneously: breakdown of skeletal muscle and muscle growth In order to sustain a positive net protein balance, individuals need to consume an adequate amount of protein. The more exercise a person undertakes, the more protein they require to sustain a positive net protein balance.

 Types of WHEY protein

CONCENTRATE

Once the cheese and curds have been separated from milk, the mixture left behind is then filtered and neutralised using citric acid. Continuous filtration of this liquid whey concentrates its protein percentage down to around 80% protein. Further microfiltration can boost protein concentration up to 90%. The liquid whey solution is then warmed and spray dried to become a whey protein powder. This is known as whey concentrate and still includes a small amount of fat and carbohydrates
 

ISOLATE

There are more types of whey protein, which are based upon different production processes that are applied to the whey. The first is whey isolate, where water is removed along with most of the lactose and fat to give a 95% protein concentration.
 

HYDROLYSATE

The next form is whey hydrolysate which is partially pre-digested with enzymes. This enzymatic pre-digestion is applied to break down some of the amino acid and protein chains into shorter chains, which accelerate absorption and amino acid availability in the body. Whey protein hydrolysate is commonly suggested to be the optimal form of whey protein where fast absorption is needed such as directly after a workout.
 

Effectiveness of WHEY protein

Weight loss in people with HIV AIDS

 Some research shows that taking whey protein by mouth can help decrease weight loss in people with HIV AIDS. HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). AIDS is the last stage of progression of the virus as it overtakes the immune system. Malnourishment has been found to accelerate the progression of HIV. It reduces quality of daily life in terms of work, family and individual care.
 

Prone allergies and allergic reactions

Research shows that infants who consume whey protein by mouth during the first 3-12 months of life are less likely to be prone to allergies and allergic reactions compared to infants who receive standard formula. However, taking whey protein might not be helpful for treating atopic diseases once they develop.
 

Red, itchy skin

 Research shows that infants who consume whey protein by mouth during the first 3-12 months of life have a lower risk of developing red, itchy skin by the age of 3 years.
 

Red, scaly skin (plaque psoriasis)

 Some evidence shows that taking a specific whey protein extract daily for 8 weeks can reduce psoriasis symptoms.
 

DOSAGE of WHEY protein

First, we need to know the recommended daily allowance advised in a normal healthy adult population. This dosage would be to sustain a balance of protein synthesis versus degradation, to account for differences in protein metabolism and nitrogen losses (via urination and excretion).
 
The recommended dosage for healthy adults (who do not exercise very regularly or aim to grow muscle mass) is suggested to be 0.8g per kg of body weight daily, which for an average 80kg man would be: 0.8g x 80kg bodyweight = 64g protein per day
 

Dosage for strength training

Bodybuilders who are involved in activities needing strength as weight lifting have a need for higher protein content than the endurance activities. The recommended values at around 1.8 grams per kilogram and this very much suits the early stages of training or when exercise volume changes dramatically
 

Bodybuilders

 Bodybuilders are recommended to consume 1.12g per kg per day specifically. When attempting to decrease body fat, intense resistance training alongside calorie restriction can lead to a negative net protein balance, despite 2g/kg protein consumed. Therefore, doses of 2.3-3.1g per kg per day have been suggested for bodybuilders attempting to reduce body fat levels, as a higher intake is proposed to sustain lean body mass, with sufficient carbohydrates and reduced fat intake.
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Cycling

 The normal protein intake should range from 1 gram per kilogram to maximum of 1.6. The maximum value can be reached if you cycle for more than 2 hours daily.
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Swimmers

 Though swimming is also considered within the ambit of intermittent sports, the presence of water makes the task much tougher. Hence the recommended values are 1.6 – 1.8 grams per kilogram of body weight.
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Running

 
A dosage of 1.6g per kg per day meets the protein (nitrogen balance) requirements for experienced runners In an elite running population, this requirement is suggested to reduce to 1.49g per kg per day
                                                                                                                   
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Lean Muscle building

 
Bodybuilders looking for gaining lean muscle mass can easily up the protein supplementation up to 1.8g per kg per day is suggested to stimulate lean muscle mass accretion. However, those who are targeting towards power sports (e.g. Olympic Weight Lifting) can easily exceed the limit of 2.1 to 2.4 g per kilogram of body weight. Strength or power exercise is always thought to increase protein requirements even more than endurance exercises, particularly during the initial stages of training or sharp increases in volume. Bodybuilders targeting to maintain lean body mass who consume sufficient carbohydrates and less fat can up their protein content up to 3.0g per kilogram of body weight.
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Observations while consuming Whey Protein

 People engaged in regular exercises and strength training require more protein than those whose life is totally sedentary
 
Though many documents blame protein for kidney failures, it is also noted that those who have balanced, nutrient-dense meals with protein never experience kidney problems whatsoever.
 
There is too much talk on the bio-availability of protein supplementation. Many people recommend one protein type over the other and offer many reasons but such superiority is yet to be established. As long as the protein consumed is digested well by your body, it is better not to get carried away in these loose talk.
 
BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids) do improve exercise performance and recovery from injuries while and after exercising. There is a repair and rebuilding process and then muscle synthesis is also involved and these BCAAs are much helpful in this.
 
Drinking adequate amount of water can ward off any side effects by flushing out the excessive proteins.
 

Disadvantages of WHEY protein

Despite occasional allegations being made regarding negative effects of high whey protein consumption, there is very little conclusive evidence to support such claims. Claims regarding the impact on the health of the kidneys, bone density, liver and cardiovascular system have all been questioned or entirely disproven.

Kidney Stone Formation

 When you consume whey protein, there is a chance of kidney stone formation While it may not be a direct cause, experts believe that this protein can make the condition worse if you are already suffering from it. To prevent this, you should take adequate quantities pf dietary fiber and water.
 

Risk Of Heart Disease

 Experts believe that consuming too much whey protein can have dangerous effects on people who suffer from heart disease. It can cause cardiac arrest, heart rhythms that are abnormal, and as well as complete loss of heart functionalities.
 

Diarrhea

 Another side effect of excessive whey protein consumption is diarrhea. It is a part of the effect that this protein has on the digestive system. There can even be blood in the stool, especially among infants.
 

Liver Damage

 Having a diet of protein supplements, with no carbs, can push the body to the state of ketosis, wherein the body utilizes fat as the primary source of energy. This leads to high blood acidity levels. Consistent high blood acidity is known to impair liver functions and may result in severe liver disorders.
 

Disturbs Blood Sugar Levels

 If it weren’t for different flavors, protein powders would be absolutely unpalatable. Protein powders, laced with flavors of chocolate or vanilla, contain additives and artificial sweeteners, which may cause an undesirable spike in blood sugar levels. On the other hand, whey protein is known to bring down the blood sugar levels.
 

Conclusion

Whey protein give the perfect opportunity to ensure your body is getting an adequate supply of protein to maximize performance and gains or maintenance in lean muscle mass. They’re a high-quality protein source that’s easily absorbed and provides all essential amino acids required to boost muscle-protein synthesis and develop lean body mass, it is a safe supplement for almost everyone. If you maintain a healthy exercising routine, drink sufficient amount of water daily and have a good night’s sleep, you can conveniently overlook what the Gurus opine on the Internet.

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    • Anchit Behal

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