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Whey protein side effects

Whey protein refers to an easily digestible high quality protein supplement. It is obtained from cow’s milk and contains globular proteins, lactose, minerals and some fat. It is the liquid substance that is left behind after cheese is produced. This substance is then dried and packaged and sold in the form of whey protein powder. Protein is a vital nutrient that is necessary for the healthy functioning of the body.
Proteins are composed of amino acids and considered to the building blocks of the body. They assist in cell repair and the building of bones and muscles. Protein also provides a source of energy and is involved in many metabolic processes of the body. The protein requirement varies from individual to individual depending on the age, sex, weight, health condition and activity level. Athletes and body builders have a higher requirement of protein since their bodies undergo a great deal of wear and tear. Whey protein is recommended for those who want to lose weight and build muscle mass. Whey protein is beneficial for health in many ways. It aids in the synthesis of protein and hence promotes recovery. The levels of the antioxidant, glutathione in the cells increase due to whey protein. This antioxidant helps in protecting the body from the damaging effects of free radicals. Whey protein is a milk protein and some studies have suggested that milk proteins help in lowering the risk of cancer. Intake of whey protein also helps to strengthen the immune system and aids in muscle building. Protein helps to regulate the levels of blood sugar. Balanced levels of blood glucose prevent hunger pangs and this is beneficial in weight loss.

Although it is a high quality form of protein, there are some whey protein side effects. If consumed in excessive amounts, there could be serious side effects. The side effects of whey protein can also be severe for those who are lactose intolerant. Lactose intolerance refers to an allergic reaction to milk and milk products. Whey protein isolate and hydrolysates, which are forms of whey protein, do not contain fat and lactose as they are removed during processing. Therefore the whey protein isolate side effects are much milder in those who are lactose intolerant. The functioning of the kidney may also be hampered due to excessive intake of whey protein. Taken in extremely high amounts, whey protein can severely hamper liver functioning and cause serious damage to the liver. There could also be a disruption in the levels of bone minerals, thereby leading to bone mineral density loss. This could contribute to the occurrence of osteoporosis. An excess of protein and an inadequate amount of carbohydrates causes the diet to become imbalanced. This can lead to ketosis which is actually starvation of the body. This condition may cause damage to the liver and may also be possibly fatal. Whey protein powder side effects also include dehydration due to improper functioning of the kidneys. Whey protein side effects for women are similar to those for men. Pregnant mothers should consult a doctor before taking any kind of protein supplement.

For all these reasons, an excessive intake of whey protein should be avoided. One gram of protein for every pound of body weight is the recommended intake of whey protein. Athletes may consume about 25 grams of whey protein daily. The intake of whey protein for bodybuilders may go up to 150 grams each day if exercise is intensive. Whey protein shakes side effects can thus be minimized by regulating your intake. It is also advisable to purchase a good quality protein powder so that the benefits of whey protein may be experienced fully.
Submitted on January 16, 2014