Protein shakes are a popular way to increase the amount of protein in your diet, and whey protein powder is one of the most popular animal-based options. Derived from the liquid by-product of strained milk, whey is a high-quality protein source containing all nine essential amino acids and is naturally low in lactose. The nutrition of whey protein powder may vary depending on the brand you buy, but the USDA has provided the following nutritional information for one tablespoon (19.5 grams) of whey protein powder. Each food manufacturer uses its own recipe, and some may include additional sweeteners or fillers that add carbohydrates.
Generally, whey protein powder contains very little fat, with one tablespoon providing 1 gram. Protein is the star of the macronutrient show in whey protein powder, with one tablespoon providing around 13 grams of high-quality animal protein. It also contains a significant amount of calcium, with one tablespoon providing 50 milligrams of calcium, approximately 5% of the recommended daily amount. Whey protein powder could stimulate muscle growth more effectively than other products, such as those derived from casein or soy. It also contains the branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) leucine, which is the main BCAA responsible for muscle synthesis.
A high-protein, low-carb diet combined with whey protein could achieve even better weight-loss results than just a high-protein diet alone. Whey protein may also help lower blood pressure and improve vascular function. People with dairy allergies should avoid whey protein powder, but those with lactose intolerance may be able to digest it without problems. Of the three types of whey protein (whey concentrate, whey isolate and whey hydrolysate), isolate and hydrolyzed have the least amount of lactose. However, it's important to remember that consuming too much protein can damage your kidneys, so stick to established serving sizes. Whey protein powder recipes will vary: some with flavorings such as vanilla or chocolate, others made with organic dairy products or from grass-fed animals.
You can add whey protein powder to the dough for pancakes, oatmeal, muffins, bars, balls, puddings and more. The serving size for most protein powders is 1 to 2 tablespoons; you can find this on the nutrition label. If you don't exercise much and consume a lot of protein-rich foods in your diet, you may not need to use a full spoonful of powder (or any powder).Whey protein powder can be a convenient way to reach your daily protein goal but it's important to remember that it's a dietary supplement and supplements aren't strictly regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. For this reason, it's difficult to be completely sure if a powder contains exactly what it says it contains.
Choose the type that fits your budget, lifestyle, and taste preferences for best results. When selecting a whey protein powder for your diet, it's important to consider how much fat is included in each serving. The USDA recommends that you choose a product with 3 grams or less per serving for a healthy and balanced diet.