Discovery Fit & Health
Whey is a natural protein found in milk. It makes up about 20 percent of the total amount of protein value in a glass of milk, with the other 80 percent coming from a protein called casein. Many people believe that taking a whey supplement can help you achieve all kinds of body-related goals, from muscle-building to weight loss.
Protein is essential for most body functions. Your body cannot grow, replace or repair cells without adequate protein. Of the 21 amino acids that make up proteins, the body can build 12 on its own. The other nine must come from dietary sources, such as meat, nuts, eggs and beans. Whey happens to supply nine of these amino acids. While whey supplies the body with the same kinds of protein as meat, the body absorbs whey protein much more quickly than it does meat protein. Of course, the sooner the body gets its protein, the sooner it can use it for maintenance and growth. This rapid absorption can be especially useful to bodybuilders and other people trying to increase muscle mass as quickly as possible. In addition, whey has far less fat than meat.
For people who are growing lots of new cells - - specifically, children, teenagers and pregnant women - - whey protein promotes both maintenance and growth. For athletes, whey protein helps build and repair muscles. But that's not all whey protein can do. For example, whey protein isolate makes the ideal supplement for weight loss and a healthy heart. It's fat-free, filling and quickly and completely absorbed by the body. Absorption speed is important, since it affects the protein's anabolic qualities.
Whey is safe for many people who have milk allergies, since casein is usually the allergen that causes the reaction. However, if you suffer from lactose intolerance or allergic reactions to dairy products, you should still take caution when adding a whey supplement to your diet. Whey also comes with several possible side effects, including weight gain, gout and kidney stones. As usual, it's best to check with a doctor first.
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