Fitness / Health / nutrition / Uncategorized

Dangers Of Whey Protein

Yes, you read the title correctly… Contrary to what you may have been led to believe from reading about whey protein  online or listening to the most jacked guy or woman at your gym talk about muscle building, and “Dieting”, whey protein powder, which Is composed of a collection of globular proteins Isolated from the liquid material created as a by-product of cheese production, Is not the ultimate health food. Actually, consuming supplements like whey protein concentrate and whey protein bars may do you more harm than good. Sorry.

Disclaimer: Today’s post Is solely my opinion. 

Downside Of Whey Protein

Whey protein supplements – In particular, whey protein powders – are among the most popular supplements on the market today, largely because conventional wisdom suggests that a daily protein shake or two is a great addition to an otherwise healthy diet – especially for those who strength train on a regular basis. It’s no longer just bodybuilders and fitness models that mix up a shake after their workout and include some strawberry-flavoured whey protein In their morning smoothie, but also housewives who’ll do everything to halt the physical decline that occurs as they get older and average Joes who are looking to gain some muscle for the beach season.

This situation didn’t arise because there’s strong scientific evidence to show that protein supplementation Is healthy or that we are better off drinking a protein shake than eating a steak or omelette, but because clever marketing, Industry-funded research, and “gym talk” have led us to believe that the protein-packed powders you can now buy at every health food store greatly enhance our chances of building a lean, fit, and healthy body.

I know that the statement that whey protein consumption Is unhealthy Is controversial and that a lot of people will criticize this my opinion and do everything they can to defend the chocolate-flavored, fast-absorbing whey protein powder they have In their kitchen cupboard. Not necessarily because they think they are better off drinking a protein shake than eating real food, but because they don’t want to believe that a supplement powder that has been a regular part of their “Diet” for a long time may have been doing them more harm than good. Also, I think a lot of people will do “anything” to avoid giving up the convenience of just mixing some protein powder with water Instead of having to prepare a protein-filled meal.

When I first started my fitness and health journey, I too was led to believe that I should Include protein supplements In my “Diet” thanks Beachbody, and years, I consumed one or two protein shakes a day. At the time, my Intake of protein-rich, real food was lower than optimal, so naturally. However, I also experienced some health Issues during this time, some of which I now know was partly caused by whey protein.

Abnormal Nutrient Composition

The human body to adapt to many of the recent changes in the human “Diet”. If there’s one thing the scientific literature consistently shows, It’s that milk, wheat, fatty processed meats, and other foods that are relative newcomers to the human “Diet” have certain characteristics that make them “Inferior” (from a health standpoint) to the types of foods our preagricultural ancestors consumed.

What about foods with a very high concentration of protein? Perhaps needless to say, the protein density of whey protein powders far exceeds that of beef, cod, eggs,  and any other protein-rich, minimally processed food. I’ll argue that these whole foods, which typically contain about 15-25% protein by weight, are the types of protein-rich foods we’re best adapted to eat.

Mixing concentrated and Isolated whey protein with whole food ( as In a fruit smoothie) may ameliorate some of the negative health effects of consuming this protein-rich powder. However, as we know, a lot of people don’t consume whey protein this way. Rather, they just mix their protein powder with some water and then drink It.

Gut Microbiota

 What Is Gut Microbiota (Gut flora, or gut microbiota, or gastrointestinal microbiota, Is the complex community of microorganisms that live In the digestive tracts of humans and other animals, Including insects.) 

Foods that either have a very high concentration of fat (high-fat cream) or very high concentration of carbohydrate ( refined grains) can alter the gut microbiota and Induce the translocation of lipopolysaccharide (a bacterial endotoxin that binds to Toll-Like Receptor 4 and causes a state of chronic endotoxemia and chronic low-grade inflammation) from the gut. Could a very concentrated source of protein, such as whey protein powder, have some of the same effects? At present, there aren’t any studies that have specifically looked at the Impact whey protein has on the Gut Microbiota. There’s strong reason to suspect that whey protein consumption negatively affects gut health (a statement that may counteract what you may have been led to believe from reading about whey protein or listening to someone who religiously drinks It.)

The big main complaint I hear from people I talk to that are new to the fitness/nutrition world Is that whey protein makes some people feel sick, bloated, gas, and even constipated.  This makes sense to me, as whey protein powder Is a processed food Item with a nutrient composition that Is very different from that of natural, whole foods.

Our primal ancestors didn’t drink milk (from any species) as adults. Milk contains a wide range of hormones, bio-active peptides, and other compounds that are specifically “designed” by natural selection to support the growth and development of an Infant. Some of these substances have potent antibacterial action, which Is one of the reasons why breastfed babies have a Gut Microbiota that Is largely composed of a specific set of lactic acid bacteria (Breast milk selects for the growth of a specific set of bacteria).

This suggests that milk consumption (particularly concentrated sources of certain components found In milk, such as whey shakes) may be problematic for adult Gut Flora. Whey protein contains many antibacterial compounds (lactoferrin), which Is likely one of the main reasons some people experience Gastrointestinal upset from drinking whey shakes. This perturbation of the gut microbiota may occur primarily In the colon and/or perhaps In the upper part of the Intestine, causing ripple effects throughout the Gastrointestinal Tract.


This obviously Is not a concern to those who buy whey protein supplements of a well-renowned trusted brand. However, as we know, many lifters and strength trainees, or fitness buffs don’t pay much attention to the potential safety concerns associated with the Ingredients and heavy metals found In the supplements they buy. This Is problematic, as the supplement Industry Is poorly controlled, and some protein powders contain metals and other ingredients that lack safety data.

In 2010, Consumer Reports tested 15 protein powders and drinks that are frequently used by both fitness enthusiasts and “regular folks” for their content of arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury. The study showed that of the 15 protein supplements tested, three contained very worrisome levels of heavy metals. Three daily servings of any of these three supplements could result in daily exposure to arsenic, cadmium, or lead exceeding the limits.


A lot of people use protein supplements primarily as a way to get some fast-absorbable protein Into their body directly before and/or after a workout, so hence, the Issue of whether or not consuming a post-workout protein shake will lead to Improved recovery and enhanced hypertrophy.

Besides learning that eating every other hour and completely destroying each muscle group once a week Is the optimal way to go for muscle growth, new strength trainees usually hear about the “anabolic window” (The metabolic window (also called the anabolic window) Is a term used In strength training to describe the 30-minute give or take, dependent on the individual period after exercise during which nutrition can shift the body from a catabolic state to an anabolic one.)  that opens up after a workout and the boost In protein synthesis and muscle growth that occurs If you consume fast-absorbable protein directly after your last set. It doesn’t matter whether you’re hungry or not, just getting It down Is the priority.


As you know If you’ve been reading the health news or have kept up with the research on “Diet” and health, non-caloric sweeteners, such as aspartame and sucralose, as well as many other artificial ingredients found In common food products, are not harmless.

Several studies and review papers have shown that artificial sweeteners may encourage sugar cravings and sugar dependence, Interfere with learned responses that normally contribute to glucose and energy homeostasis, and contribute to weight gain. Moreover, recent research shows that non-caloric artificial sweeteners can Induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota.

Final Thoughts

he more I learn about nutrition, the more convinced I become that we’re best off getting our nutrients from real, whole foods, as opposed to supplements. Actually, I would go as far as to say that most dietary supplements do more harm than good. For example, multivitamin supplements, which most people consider to be completely harmless, may interfere with  gut biofilms, cause nutritional Imbalances, and Increase chronic disease morbidity and mortality

That’s not to say that all supplements are a waste of money or that no one benefits from dietary supplementation. Those people who rarely get out In the sun and/or don’t eat fatty fish on a regular basis may benefit from vitamin D and/or omega-3 supplementation. Another supplement that can provide benefits Is probiotics, not vitamins If you are Interested In knowing why I think vitamins are pointless here Is a post I did ~~~> Vitamins Are They Useless

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Hello, my name Is Amanda and I'm the woman behind AmandaExplainsIt. I'm a Free Spirit, coffee sipping blogger and I embrace all of the messy parts of life.I'm a mommy of two precious doggies and an advocate for food allergies, animals, and nutrition In real life. I've always loved writing and writing a blog fulfills that. I'm all about spirituality and going with the flow of things. I'm new to the beauty world and I'm excited to share what I learn along the way. Come back often because I post often and I post things related to but not limited to Beauty Reviews, Product Reviews, Spirituality, Nutrition and Food Allergies, and Gluten-Free Recipes. If you like what you read let's be friends. ~XOXO A.


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