If you're human, you need protein.
That includes you ladies.
There are many myths regarding whey protein for women, but remember this;
- It won't make you bulky.
- It won't make you fat.
- Your body needs protein to function.
Whether you're looking to lose fat, build muscle, tone muscle, or just maintain a healthy lifestyle, including whey protein into your diet can help you meet your protein needs and have benefits you may not have realized.
WHAT IS WHEY PROTEIN?
Whey is an animal based protein and the liquid portion of milk that separates from the curds when making cheese.
It's a high-quality protein packed with essential amino acids - the "building blocks of protein".
Considered a "complete protein", whey contains all nine essential amino acids that are crucial for:
- Muscle protein synthesis
- Production of hormones and neurotransmitters (serotonin) to maintain optimum mental health.
- Satiation, (feeling of fullness) which is beneficial for weight management.
TYPES OF WHEY PROTEIN
There are three types of whey protein:
WHEY PROTEIN CONCENTRATES (WPC)
Whey concentrates are extracted from whole foods using heat and enzymes.
Concentrates typically contain 60-80% protein and 20-40% carbohydrates and fats.
The percentage of protein depends on how concentrated the whey is.
High in protein, low in fats and carbohydrates, WPCs are a good source of branch chain amino acids (BCAAs) which are beneficial for muscle growth and fat loss.
WHEY PROTEIN ISOLATE (WPI)
Similar to concentrates, isolates are also extracted from whole foods, but go through additional filtering to remove fats and carbohydrates.
Isolate powders typically contain 90-95% protein and have a very low percentage of fats and carbohydrates.
PROTEIN HYDROLYSATES (WPH)
Hydrolysates are "predigested" proteins that are partially broken down into small peptides.
This makes them easier to digest and absorb.
NUTRITIONAL CONTENT OF WHEY - 1 SCOOP OF BUILD
5 BENEFITS OF WHEY PROTEIN FOR WOMEN
- Promotes Muscle Growth and Development
- Improves Heart Health
- Promotes Weight Loss and Weight Management
- Reduces Inflammation
- Improve Immune Defense
Keep reading to learn more about how protein functions in your body and to your benefit.
PROMOTES MUSCLE GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT
Muscle mass decreases naturally with age.
As muscle mass declines, the body gains fat, increasing the risk of chronic disease.
You can slow, reverse, or prevent this adverse change in your body by maintaining a healthy diet and by strength training. A combination of high protein foods and strength training effectively promotes muscle growth and development.
Whey is a high-protein powder that’s also rich in leucine, a branched-chain amino acid. Leucine is an essential amino acid that has the unique ability to increase muscle protein synthesis by boosting insulin secretion.
As an anabolic amino acid, leucine helps build muscle and prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue.
According to a 2007 study, whey protein is better than other protein sources, like soy or casein, at stimulating muscle protein synthesis. Consuming whey after resistance exercise promotes the accretion of lean muscle mass in the body.
Lean muscle mass is essential for women throughout their lives, and their resting metabolic rate is determined by it.
The more lean muscle you have as a woman, the more calories your body burns at rest. By taking whey protein, you can increase your metabolic rate and burn more calories throughout the day.
HOW WHEY PROTEIN PROMOTES MUSCLE GROWTH
- It contains proteins and amino acids which are the vital building blocks for muscle gains
- It contains a high level of the amino acid leucine which stimulates the synthesis of protein. Protein synthesis is achieved by triggering the growth hormones important for muscle development
- It improves the secretion of anabolic growth hormones like insulin which in turn stimulates muscle growth
- Whey protein is absorbed faster than other forms of protein and helps in nitrogen retention, which is necessary for muscle growth
- It prevents post-workout muscle soreness
IMPROVES HEART HEALTH
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States.
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or bad cholesterol, is the leading cause of heart disease.
Whey protein improves heart health by reducing bad cholesterol (LDL) and increasing good cholesterol (HDL). The lactoferrin in whey protein has been shown to inhibit the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, which is a critical step in the development of heart disease.
A 2010 study showed that whey protein significantly lowered bad cholesterol and triglycerides in female participants with high cholesterol levels. In terms of cholesterol reduction, the study compared whey and casein proteins. The result indicated that whey protein caused a significant decrease in LDL cholesterol at week 12 compared to casein protein.
Whey proteins also improve cardiovascular health by reducing blood pressure (hypertension). Lactokinins in whey protein have the ability to relax blood vessels by inhibiting angiotensin conversion.
In a study conducted with overweight subjects, whey protein supplementation reduced systolic blood pressure by 4%. These results were obtained after supplementing with 54 grams of whey protein per day for 12 weeks.
PROMOTES WEIGHT LOSS AND MAINTENANCE
High protein intake is an effective weight loss strategy.
Protein promotes fat loss in the body by:
- Stimulating muscle growth, which in turn burns more calories by boosting metabolism
- Reducing hunger and cravings by promoting satiety. As a result, you consume fewer calories
- Preventing the loss of lean muscle mass during weight loss
Whey protein can help maintain weight as it's low in calories and high in essential nutrients that are vital for maintaining optimum health. It contains all of the amino acids necessary to build muscle mass but is low in calories and fat.
Inflammation among women is a significant health concern.
Inflammation is one way the body responds to injury or irritation. Chronic inflammation, however, can lead to various diseases including heart disease and cancer.
Circulating C-reactive protein (CRP) is a marker of inflammation, and increased levels have been linked to several chronic diseases.
Whey protein decreases CRP levels by inhibiting the production of proinflammatory cytokines. In a 2015 meta-analysis, participants with high CRP levels were supplemented with 20 grams of whey protein per day. The results showed that whey protein significantly reduced CRP levels. This illustrates that whey protein could be a valuable treatment for chronic inflammation.
Furthermore, the dairy proteins, calcium, and magnesium present in whey have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce inflammation.
Inflammation is caused by obesity and lack of physical activity or exercise. Whey protein helps the body fight against the build-up of toxins through its antioxidant effects as it prevents oxidative stress.
IMPROVES IMMUNE AND ANTIOXIDANT DEFENSES
The oxidative stress caused by free radicals can negatively affect your body. This can result in the acceleration of the aging process, inflammation, and cancer development in healthy cells.
Your body needs high glutathione levels to fight antioxidants. Although the body produces glutathione, its production is increased by amino acids like cysteine. At times, your body may have a limited supply of cysteine.
Whey protein contains high levels of cysteine which helps to increase glutathione levels in the body.
Furthermore, whey protein increases the activity of enzymes like catalase and superoxide dismutase. These enzymes help scavenge free radicals from the body. By increasing glutathione levels in the body, whey protein aids in the fight against oxidative stress.
Don't believe the myths surrounding protein consumption, our bodies need protein.
Protein can help to;
- Promote muscle growth and development.
- Improve hearth health.
- Aid in fat loss and weight management.
- Reduce acute inflammation.
- Improve immune functions and antioxidant defenses.