If you’re about that #healthyliving life, it’s likely that you’re familiar with protein. And for good reason: consuming enough protein supports optimal bodily function, muscle recovery, and even weight loss.
If you also happen to be about that plant-based life, you have to keep a closer eye on your protein intake. (Because raw eggs and steak for breakfast may just not be on the menu for you.)
One of the most foolproof ways to ensure you're getting an adequate amount? Protein supplements.
If you’ve wandered down the supplement aisle at your local vitamin shop or typed “protein powder” into an Amazon search you know that “whey protein concentrate” is as ubiquitous as the bulging biceps and ALL CAPS type font displayed on each big tub of powder.
But what is whey protein concentrate? And is it a healthy source of protein? Let’s dig in before gulping down.
What is Whey Protein Concentrate?
Whey protein concentrate is a protein-rich, dairy by-product. It's also the most popular kid protein supplement in class on the market.
The simplified rundown of how whey protein concentrate is made?
- Cow is milked
- Milk is turned into cheese
- In the cheese-making process, liquid whey is removed and dried into a powder
After the whey is derived from the milk, it's “concentrated” by removing the non-protein components. The result is a supplement that’s 75 to 85 percent pure protein (the remaining components being carbohydrates and fats).
Whey protein concentrate is touted for its high-protein properties and its ability to be quickly absorbed by the body.
Is Whey Protein Right for You?
As always, whey your options (had to). A few things to consider:
- Does milk work for your body? The prominent sugar in milk (lactose) is a common allergen that makes whey difficult to digest and rough on the stomach for those who are lactose intolerant. 60% of adults don't produce lactase — the enzyme necessary to successfully digest lactose.
- What are your quality requirements? If you buy your eggs and dairy products from the farmer’s market and expect your protein supplement to meet the same quality standards — be sure to read the label and look for added sugars, chemicals, and trans fats. Need help choosing a clean protein powder? Read up here.
In pursuit of a dairy-free and clean protein powder? Look no further.