An introduction to Whey Protein

Welcome to Whey Protein Site – your one stop place for the best Whey protein reviews and recommendations. Whey protein products vary highly in price and quality and so we at Whey Protein Site will continually offer reviews on whey protein products and also find the best prices for high quality but cheap whey protein from among the many different retailers on the net. And if you’re thinking of starting on protein supplements, you’ll also find plenty of information and guides here.
Protein

Protein is the building block of muscle. So, you’re protein requirements will increase with any form of training. A lack of protein will result in muscle loss, a weaker immune system, and slower recovery time and less energy. So if you want to lose fat while retaining your muscle mass, you’ll need to ensure that you’re taking enough high quality protein.

Protein consists of both essential and non-essential amino acids. Non-essential amino acids are amino acids that your body can create out of other chemicals present in the body while essential amino acids cannot be created and must be taken from an external source. Protein makes up for a substantial amount of body weight. While the average human body is made up of about 60% water and 20% other minerals such as calcium, protein makes up for the remaining 20%.

What is Whey Protein?

Whey Protein is made as a by-product of cheese which is from Cow’s milk. The resulting curds are dried and processed with the fat being removed to extract the whey. Although it has been overlooked for years, recent research has proved that whey protein is one of the best sources of protein you can take, especially if you want to build muscle.

Whey protein is a collection of globular proteins and is made up of four main protein fractions and six minor fractions. These main fractions are beta-lactoglobulin (65%), alpha-lactalbumin (25%), bovine serum albumin (8%) and immunoglobulins. This balance of protein fractions means that whey protein has the highest Biological Value (BV) of any protein which ensures fast muscle growth. Basically the higher the BV of the protein you use, the more nitrogen can be absorbed into the body.

To put this into perspective, whey protein has a BV of 104 while egg protein coming in at a close second at 100. Milk protein has a BV of 91 and beef protein is further down with a BV of 80. Plant based proteins such as soy have 74 while bean proteins have the least at 49.

Why is Whey Protein important?

Since protein is basically the building block of muscle, not enough protein in your diet leads to muscle loss because your body starts to use it’s own sources of protein for energy. And since muscle is made up of protein, you will start to lose muscle which leads to not only a loss in strength but also a lower metabolism. That’s why if you’ve been weight training for some time and seem to be hitting a plateau, it may be because you aren’t taking enough quality protein.

The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of protein is 0.36 grams per pound of body weight or 56 grams of protein a day for the average male and 46 grams for the average female. For people with an active lifestyle the protein requirements jump to 1.7 grams of protein per kilo of bodyweight. If you want to build muscle as fast as possible, you will need at least 2.5 grams of protein per kilo of bodyweight.

Whey protein in particular contains amino acids such as leucine which increases protein synthesis and speeds up recovery time. Studies have also shown that whey protein increases cellular glutathione levels. Glutathione is an antioxidant which combats free radicals in the body and helps to reduce cancer.

Losing weight with Whey Protein

Most people think that in order to lose fat you basically need to expend more calories than you consume. There’s more to this however, because when you start eating less and exercising more, your body starts to use it’s own muscle protein. To counteract that, you need to find an external source of high quality protein otherwise you’ll lose muscle and your metabolic rate will slow down – making it harder to lose weight.

Scientific studies have also proven that protein keeps you fuller for longer reducing food cravings and making you eat less. That is why many weight loss programmes recommend a high protein low carbohydrate diet.

How do I take Whey Protein?

Whey protein comes in different forms:

  • Protein Powder
  • Protein Bars
  • Protein Shakes
  • Protein Capsule Drinks

The most popular is the powdered form which is mixed with either water or milk and turned into a shake. Protein Bars look like flapjacks and are useful when you’re on the move and don’t have a blender handy. Ready made protein shakes come in cartons and can be drunk straight out of the box, with no preparation required. Lastly, protein capsules contain liquid protein in testube-like vials and are useful when you’re in a hurry and need a protein hit.

Protein powder is pound for pound the least expensive form of protein there is and because it’s taken in liquid format, it is more readily absorbed by the body.