Whey protein is one of the best quality sources of protein you can get for optimal health and wellness.
Studies have linked whey protein with a stronger immune system, a healthier heart, increased tissue repair and chronic disease prevention. Many of whey protein’s touted health benefits arise from its ability to increase levels of glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant.
What is whey protein?
Milk is made from two proteins: casein and whey. Whey is the liquid portion that is separated from milk or created during the process of making cheese. It is a complete protein containing all 9 essential amino acids. It contains healing proteins such as immunoglobulins, bovine serum albumin, beta lactoglobulin and alpha lactalbumin. Whey is very low in lactose content and has low allergy potential.
Whey protein comes in three main forms: concentrate, isolate, and hydrolysate. Whey protein concentrate is the least processed form of whey and contains healthy fats and carbohydrates.
Top 8 health benefits of whey protein:
- 1. Lowers inflammation
- Research has shown that whey protein can significantly reduce C-reactive protein (CRP), a major marker of inflammation in the body (Source). Another study showed that supplementing with whey protein reduced IL-6, a pro-inflammatory marker, by 70.99% (Source). Supplementing with whey protein regularly could be beneficial for lowering chronic, systemic inflammation in the body.
- 2. Promotes weight loss
- Increasing protein intake is a great weight-loss strategy. Eating more protein boosts satiety (the feeling of being full), increases muscle mass and stimulates metabolism. Protein, like whey protein, has the highest thermic effect of food. This means that your body has to burn a lot more calories to digest protein compared to other macronutrients such as fat or carbohydrates.
- 3. Boosts glutathione antioxidant
- Whey protein is rich in the amino acid cysteine, which is the precursor to glutathione. Glutathione is the body’s master antioxidant and it is produced by the body. Foods rich in cysteine, like whey protein, are great to boost glutathione levels internally. Increased levels of glutathione decrease the levels of oxidative stress and prevent the risk for chronic disease.
- 4. Reduces blood pressure
- Whey protein has bioactive peptides (small protein components) that act as angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors (ACE-inhibitors) and can significantly reduce blood pressure (Source). The ACE-inhibitory proteins in whey are called lactokinins and they have been shown to aid in the prevention and treatment of high blood pressure in various studies (Source).
- 5. Normalizes cholesterol levels
- Research suggests that whey protein may lower LDL cholesterol, also known as the “bad” cholesterol (Source). A study published in 2018 showed that whey protein supplementation significantly increased HDL cholesterol by up to 67.86% (Source). The study concluded that chronic whey protein consumption could regulate lipids in the blood and therefore protect against atherosclerosis.
- 6. May help treat Type 2 Diabetes
- Whey protein has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce levels of the hormone insulin, both of which are protective against Type 2 Diabetes. A study published in The American Journal of Nutrition concluded that whey protein, when taken with carbohydrates, stimulates the release of insulin and thereby rapidly reduces blood glucose post-meal (Source). Regulating blood sugar with whey protein supplements is an effective tool to prevent or manage Type 2 Diabetes.
- 7. Has anti-cancer properties
- Whey protein has been shown to increase glutathione status, which helps to boost the immune response and fight off free radical damage (Source). Other research points to evidence that whey protein can have anti-tumor effects in some cancers (Source).
- 8. Increases muscle growth
- Whey protein is rich in the branched chain amino acid leucine, which is one of the most anabolic (or growth-building) amino acids there is. Whey protein is one of the best sources of leucine and it promotes muscle growth. It also prevents muscle loss, which is important as muscle mass declines with age.
Where can I get the best whey protein?
We recommend our New Zealand grass-fed whey protein concentrate found in our Daily Defense protein powder. This is the purest and most nutritionally bioavailable form of whey protein. Our whey protein is cold processed to ensure it remains highly nutrient dense and retains all its micronutrients and amino acids. It is also easy to digest, complete with digestive enzymes, prebiotics and probiotics.
Whey protein has so many therapeutic effects. Take 2 scoops of our Daily Defense in water, nut milk, raw milk or smoothie. Two delicious flavors.