Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Benefits of Whey Protein to the Body

Whey protein is becoming an interest in the field of science and medicine because of its therapeutic properties. Clinical studies have shown that whey protein may possess anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory effects. The key to a healthy life may just lie in this mixture of these globular proteins.

A Background on Whey Protein

Composed of mixed globular proteins derived from whey; whey protein is actually a by-product of cheese production, (the liquid material). It is available in the market as a dietary supplement and it is used in alternative medicine. This type of protein sparks interest in the health care industry, as clinical tests show it possesses significant health benefits. In rodents for example, whey protein had been found to exert anti-inflammatory effects. Although human studies are yet to be done, the result of the test can also be related to the processes in the human body.

The process of cheese production gives birth to whey protein. After the milk coagulates, it leaves a liquid from which whey is derived. This liquid contains milk proteins lactalbumin and some minerals. After the coagulated milk is removed, this liquid is further processed to extract the proteins for human consumption. This is where whey protein is born. Processing of the protein involves the removal of fat or lipids from the liquid whey only leaving the essential proteins behind.

The whey derived from milk is composed of several types of proteins, this includes beta-lacatalbumin (occurs in greater amounts), alpha-lactalbumin, serum albumin and immunoglobins. These proteins contribute greatly in human functioning and in health.

Why Do We Need Proteins?

Proteins are called the "building blocks of life". Every inch in our body is composed of proteins, from our hair to our skin, to the muscles as well as to the vital organs. Because every structure in our body is composed of proteins, we need a good supply of protein from our diet. Aside from being serving as the foundation for the structures in our body, proteins also play an important role in regulating our blood pressure, hormonal or enzyme synthesis and immunity. Proteins, such as albumins contribute greatly in maintaining the balance of fluids within our body. Hormones and enzymes are also made up of protein, and even our immune cells are made up of these compounds. If the body is rid of a good protein supply, all of these bodily structures and functions would be greatly affected. Muscles and vital organs will disintegrate, there would be fluid imbalance causing edema and swelling, hormones and enzymes would not work properly, and the immune cells would not be able to protect the body from harmful invaders.

What are the Benefits of Whey Protein?

Whey protein is beneficial for the body because it is a concoction of the different types of proteins. Four major proteins and the six minor proteins exert different health benefits for the body.

Whey protein and muscle building - researches have shown that a supplement of whey protein is beneficial to those who undergo muscle building trainings compared to those who do not have any supplement of proteins. This may be due to the fact that muscles are also made up of protein. Having a good supply of proteins also promotes tissue building and amino acid synthesis. This process leads to the production of more proteins, and more tissue mass which is needed in muscle building.

Protein synthesis and tissue repair - proteins are sources of amino acids. Amino acids play a very important role in maintaining normal functioning in the human body. In fact, absences of one or more of these amino acids lead to disease conditions such as depression and phenylketonuria. Whey protein contains a great amount of leucine and branched-chain amino acids. These amino acids spark the process of protein synthesis (the production of protein). Protein synthesis is very important in tissue repair and recovery. In cases the cells or tissues in the body are damaged, these amino acids stimulate the production of more proteins in order to repair and strengthen them. Breaks in the skin or in the muscles, in cases of trauma are situations where protein synthesis is highly needed. High amounts of leucine and branched-chain amino acid would spark protein synthesis, closing the wound faster and preventing the person from getting further infections. Human immune cells also need this kind of function as these cells are the ones that suffer damage from protecting the body. A strong immune cell capable of fast recovery would be able to protect the body more from invading pathogens that threaten it. Whey protein is a good source of these essential compounds to the body.


  1. Totally agree that If we want to live healthy life, we need Protein in our daily diet. Got Good information from your post regarding Benefits of whey protein, I would like to add more Benefits of whey protein Apart from the Benefits of whey protein you have mentioned in your post, It helps to improve physical performance, sharpen your mind, enhance circulatory system function. Thanks.

  2. Thanks for explaining the the health benefits of taking whey protein.