Whey protein is a mixture of proteins which are less or more soluble in the aqueous solutions and are isolated from the whey. Whey or milk plasma is a by-product of the manufacturing process of cheese and is used on a large commercial scale to produce whey protein. Whey protein is a mixture of serum albumin, beta-lactoglobulin and alpha-lactalbumin. The major protein fractions in whey also comprise of immunoglobulins.
There are three major forms of whey protein: hydrolysate, concentrate and isolate. The hydrolysate form is predigested and is partially hydrolyzed. Concentrate form, on the other hand, contains higher levels of carbohydrates in the form of lactose and bioactive compounds and is low in fat and cholesterol. Moreover, concentrates are 30%-85% protein by weight. Isolate form is more than 90% protein by weight and is lower in bioactive compounds, lactose and fat. It is milky in taste and is a wonderful source of the natural protein. Whey Isolate is easily absorbed and is rich in branch chain amino acids (BCAA’s) which is essential for rapid gains in lean muscle. Protein is digested to peptides which are the preferred form for absorption by the body, particularly during/after intense exercise.
There are numerous effects of protein on the health of humans and it can also be successfully used to reduce the disease risks as well. The researchers have investigated that whey protein exhibits anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. It reduces the risks of numerous diseases such as cancer, heart attack and coronary heart disease and can be used as a possible supplementary treatment for those diseases. Furthermore, whey also makes a wonderful source of amino acids especially branched chain amino acids which stimulate protein synthesis and provide energy to the working muscles.
As whey protein has an amazing ability to be digested very rapidly, it can be used by regular gym users and body builders to help muscle rebuilding and re-growth. The use of protein after heavy workouts not only increases levels of amino acids in one’s blood and adds muscle mass, but it also helps open up blood flow in the arteries by inhibiting an angiotensin-converting enzyme which constricts the veins. This in turn, ensures a better supply of oxygen and nutrients to your vital organs, tissues and muscles to help rebuild and repair muscle tissues.
Whey protein is commonly ingested as a dietary supplement and you should use one that provides your body with a constant supply.