Which Whey to Go?
Which WHEY to go??? (my secret insider truths about protein supplements will shock you!)
Matt "the Piller" Miller VPT Covent Garden www.millerthepillar.tv tel: 07595663952
If you look on the label of your protein shake, bar or tub of weight gainer you will instantly be overloaded with amazing tales of scientific marvels. "Fructoogliosaccarides". What are those? Contains "a high quality protein blend, enriched with whey protein". Doesn’t that sound vague?
Unfortunately even as a consumer trying to be healthy by supplementing your protein ALL ODDS ARE STILL AGAINST YOU! Companies understandably want to make as much money as possible. Couple this with a health supplement sector that is not regulated by the food standards board and you are left ENTIRELY to the mercy of the company’s ethos you buy from.
As for protein, it is the most important muscle building supplement you can take. But they are not created equal by any measure. A label might be required to tell you that it has 50g of protein, but this is not a full picture of information. There are two other questions to answer: 1. What is the percentage of impurities, such as lactose (which is worthy of another article but suffice to say adults haven’t any business consuming it)? 2. What percentage of the protein, or more accurately the different protein strands/sub fractions, can your body actually use?
Most of what we see on our supplement ingredient list is some confusing version of whey protein. Whey is actually a waste product of cheese manufacture is arguably the most potent and widely arrayed/complete protein supplement. But it also comes with two problems to overcome in processing: removing the lactose and leaving the delicate proteins undamaged so they are still biologically active.
We see all these options on labels and most of us have no idea what the different processes actually mean to us.
Ok let there be some light, here is my wade-through-the label guide:
milk protein concentrate/whey concentrate I call this "leave it and dry it" . Very high in lactose but also about 80% of the protein fractions are preserved and active. Severe bloating and intestinal cramping probable.
Filtered whey. Heat or acidic filtration gets all but 15% of lactose but destroys most of the protein sub fractions in the process.
Ion exchange Whey This results in possibly the most pure - actually TOO pure because it filters out 4 of the main protein peptides entirely!
Hydrolysed protein. This is typically found in low carb protein drinks or shots and is broken down into much smaller very pure peptides (often called "pre-digested") The process of hydrolysis also denatures the protein and it has NO biological activity.
Micro/nano filtration most expensive but give the best of both under 5% impurities like lactose and around 90% of the protein peptides are still intact.
Obviously the cheapest are also the least effective , so buyer beware of protein "blends" of protein concentrate mixed with ion exchanged and nano filtered whey as the ratio of those ingredients was most certainly omitted.
So here is my take home message on whey protein supplements: READ THE LABEL AND NEVER EVER BUY CHEAP PROTEIN - IT’S A WASTE OF YOUR MONEY!
www.myprotein.com has a very clear and full disclosure on all its products so you make make you own choice based on your body, price and quality. I am also a massive fan of www.up-raw.com bars which only have the finest raw ingredients.