Whey It Is (1)
By Will Brink, author of:
Muscle Gaining Diet, Training Routines by Charles Poliquin
& Bodybuilding Supplement Review
If there is one thing that continues to perplex me, it
is the disparity between how popular whey protein is (thanks
in large part to yours truly) and how much confusion there
is regarding this immensely popular supplement. Why are
people so confused about whey? I have to conclude that it's
part deceptive advertising by some unscrupulous supplement
companies, poorly researched articles put out by self proclaimed
"guru" types, and the fact that whey is indeed
a complicated protein. In this article I will endeavor to
clear it all up once and for all?ift the vale of secrecy,
strip away the myths, and shatter the hyperbole surrounding
this ultra popular supplement.
By the time you are through reading this article, you will
know all you need to know regarding the differences in whey,
such as concentrates vs. isolates, micro filtered vs. ion
exchange, and many other answers to questions that seem
to persist no matter how hard wise-guy writers like me have
tried to dispense with all the myths and misinformation/ disinformation
surrounding whey. Read this article carefully, put it to
memory, and you will be the resident whey expert in the
gym and amaze your friends at the next cookout if whey becomes
a topic of discussion (in which case you go to some boring
What is whey protein?
When we talk about whey we are actually referring to a
complex ingredient made up of protein, lactose, fat and
minerals. Protein is the best known component of whey and
is made up of many smaller protein subfractions such as:
Beta-lactoglobulin, alpha-lactalbumin, immunoglobulins (IgGs),
glycomacropeptides, bovine serum albumin (BSA) and minor
peptides such as lactoperoxidases, lysozyme and lactoferrin.
Each of the subfractions found in whey has its own unique
Up until quite recently, separating these subfractions
on a large scale was either impossible or prohibitively
expensive for anything but research purposes. Modern filtering
technology has improved dramatically in the past decade,
allowing companies to separate some of the highly bioactive
peptides -such as lactoferrin and lactoperoxidase-from whey.
Some of these subfractions are only found in very minute
amounts in cow's milk, normally at less than one percent.
For example, although it is one of the most promising subfractions
for preventing various diseases, improving immunity and
overall health, lactoferrin makes up approximately 0.5%
or less of whey protein derived from cow's milk (whereas
human milk protein will contain up to 15% lactoferrin).
Over the past few decades, whey protein powders have evolved
several generations from low protein concentrates to very
high protein isolates.
What's so great about whey?
Whey protein has become a staple supplement for most bodybuilders
and other athletes, and for good reason: it's a great protein
with a wide variety of benefits. Whey has more recently
caught on with the anti-aging/longevity-minded groups also.
A growing number of studies has found whey may potentially
reduce cancer rates, combat HIV, improve immunity, reduce
stress and lower cortisol, increase brain serotonin levels,
improve liver function in those suffering from certain forms
of hepatitis, reduce blood pressure, and improve performance,
to name a few of its potential medical- and sports-related
applications. Whey also has an exceptionally high biological
value rating and an exceptionally high Branch Chain Amino
Acid (BCAA) content.
One of whey's major effects is its apparent ability to
raise glutathione (GSH). The importance of GSH for the proper
function of the immune system cannot be overstated. GSH
is arguably the most important water-soluble antioxidant
found in the body.
The concentration of intracellular GSH is directly related
to lymphocyte's (an important arm of the immune system)
reactivity to a challenge, which suggests intracellular
GSH levels are one way to modulate immune function. GSH
is a tri-peptide made up of the amino acids L-cysteine,
L-glutamine and glycine. Of the three, cysteine is the main
source of the free sulfhydryl group of GSH and is a limiting
factor in the synthesis of GSH (though the effects of whey
on GSH is more complicated than simply its cysteine content).
Because GSH is known to be essential to immunity, oxidative
stress, and general well being, and because reduced levels
of GSH are associated with a long list of diseases, whey
has a place in anyone's nutrition program. Reduced GSH is
also associated with over training syndrome (OTS) in athletes,
so whey may very well have an application in preventing,
or at least mitigating, OTS. Pertaining directly to athletes,
some recent studies suggest whey may have direct effects
on performance and muscle mass, but this research is preliminary
at best. Some studies have found oxidative stress contributes
to muscular fatigue, so having higher GSH levels may allow
you to train longer and harder, as some recent data suggests.
>> Click here
for part 2
>> Click here for Will Brink's Bodybuilding Revealed
Click here to Order Optimum 100 Whey
Click here for AST VP2 whey protein isolate
>> Click here for Whey Protein supplements