Many people and fitness enthusiasts have unlocked the secret to a healthier and fitter life with whey protein. If you are a gym-goer or just want to improve your overall well-being, you might have heard about this amazing supplement. But like any other dietary choice, you need to essentially weigh the pros and cons of whey protein as indicated by doctors. Let’s go through a brief analysis of whey protein's benefits and side effects so you can understand it better.
As per Statista, the estimated market size of the whey protein industry will surge from 2021 (10.3 billion) to 2029 (18.12 billion). These figures show how much people will consume the supplement to stay fit and strong. Some reasonable pros of whey protein are:
Well, muscles are all about protein. Without enough protein in your diet, you won't be able to build muscle. Whey protein is a type of complete protein that contains all nine essential amino acids that our bodies need but can't make on their own. Whey an ideal source of nutrition for athletes and bodybuilders looking to build muscle mass. One scoop of whey provides around 24 grams of high-quality protein, making it an excellent choice when trying to increase overall daily intake.
People also use whey protein as a weight-loss supplement these days. The powder is also low in calories but keeps you fuller for longer. This is what makes it easier for you to stick to your diet. Since whey protein helps build muscle mass and not fat, it improves your body composition dramatically.
Certain foods, like fruits and vegetables, contain compounds known as antioxidants. These compounds help to prevent oxidation caused by external factors such as toxins, stress, poor diet, and excessive sun exposure. Excessive oxidation can lead to free radicals in the body and cells. According to studies, whey protein can boost glutathione levels in your body. It’s an essential antioxidant which is known to reduce oxidative stress.
It may be hard to believe, but amino acids found in whey protein also help repair damaged skin and tissues. Due to the antiseptic properties, whey protein can help your wound heal faster. It helps promote tissue growth, reduce inflammation and improve blood circulation. So, if you have undergone a surgery or have recently faced an injury, whey protein supplement is a good option for recovering.
A study has shown that whey protein supplementation can lower total cholesterol and LDL levels. The credit goes to amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. Amino acids help reduce cholesterol absorption from food and increase its elimination from the body, leading to lower cholesterol levels.
There are lots of good reasons to add this supplement to your daily routine. However, there are some cons of whey protein which can be dire if you don’t heed to the side effects.
Mostly, side effects of whey protein occur due to higher consumption among users. If you consume whey protein without exercising or in excess, it could cause harm to your liver over time. Although it is beneficial for building muscles, using it inappropriately can lead to undesirable effects. This is because the liver has to process the protein, which can eventually cause damage.
Excessive consumption of whey protein may also lead to dehydration due to its diuretic properties. You must drink plenty of fluids when taking this supplement to avoid dehydration.
Whey protein can cause digestive issues such as gas, bloating, and abdominal pain if it's not taken with the right amount of water or foods that may help alleviate digestion. Those lactose intolerant should avoid this supplement altogether as it contains a significant amount of dairy products which could worsen symptoms.
If you have any allergies to milk, eggs, or soy, whey protein may trigger an allergic reaction. It’s best to consult your doctor before trying out this supplement if you suffer from food allergies.
Consuming whey protein can impact kidney function by raising plasma urea content, calcium excretion, and volume. This can strain your kidneys and increase the risk of kidney stones. To mitigate this risk, increasing your water and fiber intake is important if you are consuming whey protein.
Ultimately, understanding the intricacies and nuances of whey protein makes it easier to decide whether it's worth adding to your fitness regime. There are pros and cons when considering whey protein as part of your diet, but ultimately, the decision is up to you. If you have any underlying health conditions, discussing them with your physician before introducing whey protein into your diet is better.
Whey protein may be right for you if you’re looking for an easy way to supplement a healthy lifestyle. Quality and quantity should always be considered when adding something new to your nutrition regime, and tracking progress for long periods can give insights into how the body is adapting to the change in dietary habits. Don't let a moment of doubt prevent you from taking charge by improving yourself — strive towards personal growth and add whey protein to your fitness regime.
Whey protein may cause stomach pains and cramps when taken in high amounts. It's possible for individuals who are allergic to milk to also have an allergy to whey protein. However, in moderate amounts, whey protein usually does not lead to any negative effects.
Elevated levels of cholesterol, specifically LDL (considered harmful), contribute to the likelihood of developing heart disease. Research conducted on overweight individuals revealed that consuming 65 grams of whey protein daily for 12 weeks decreased both total and LDL cholesterol.
If you are lactose intolerant, you may be allergic to whey protein and experience breathing difficulties such as wheezing. It is important to seek medical attention if you experience these symptoms.
In general, whey protein is considered safe for consumption, and most people can take it without any issues. The recommended daily dosage is typically 1 to 2 scoops, equivalent to 25 to 50 grams.