Whey Protein a “TRUE” Miracle Food – Part 5…The Prequel
Many of you have said you've enjoyed my whey protein articles over the last few weeks but a few people have requested that we just go over the basics of whey protein for those people who are new to using supplements.
So for those people who don't know much about whey protein, here’s the lowdown…
Whey protein is simply a protein naturally found in milk. Milk is made up of water, sugar (lactose), fat and some minerals and vitamins. If we look at “semi-skimmed” / “2%” milk, it has about 12 grams of sugar, 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fat per cup. So less than 30% of milk’s calories come from protein.
Of that protein, whey makes up about 20% - the rest is made up of the protein casein. Human mother’s milk is about 60% whey protein and 40% casein – so humans seem to need a higher proportion of whey protein for optimum growth. Whey protein is made by simply removing most of the other stuff in milk that’s not whey protein – so the lactose, fat and casein is separated from the whey protein and then most of the water is removed and voila, whey protein powder!
So think of it as being like making butter but instead of ending up with fat, you end up with protein. So if anyone ever tries to imply that whey protein isn’t a perfectly natural food, then ask them if they consider butter to be a food!
So what’s so special about whey protein? Well, you can find the answer to that in my four previous articles but in a nutshell, it is the best protein for building and repairing muscle, for health and for weight loss…not a bad resume eh?
Part of whey’s advantages come from its superior concentration of the most important amino acids that the body requires for growth, repair, blood flow, immunity and health. Its other effects come from its unique protein content.
The body requires certain amino acids for use as the building blocks of muscle and other organs and whey has the best ratio to satisfy the body’s specific requirements.
The trick with processing whey protein is that you want to remove as much of the fat and sugar as possible but also maintain the special properties of the protein. You see, a big part of the reason for whey protein’s unique nutritional effects is the way its proteins are shaped and the effects of those shapes on the body. Think of the proteins in whey as it gets broken down in the gut as little “keys” that fit various “locks”. If whey protein is processed harshly, with too much heat or acid, the shape of the proteins changes and the keys won’t fit the locks resulting in the loss of some of whey proteins’ benefits.
So that’s pretty much the basics! I probably should have started with this article first but call it a “Prequel”…it worked for George Lucas in the Star Wars movies?? So now that you have the basics, you may want to read the other four articles as they’ll probably make a bit more sense now…and if you have a question or need me to clear anything up, just post it on FitnessInventor.com!
Nutritionist and Supplement Specialist
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