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Functional Foods

Whey Protein

12 years, 9 months ago

1529  0
Posted on Dec 30, 2005, 8 p.m. By Bill Freeman

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: As a derivative of milk production, the types of amino acids in whey proteins are closely related to the amino acids required by the human body. Whey proteins also have proportionately more sulfur-containing amino acids and contain a relative surplus of a variety of essential amino acids.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION:

As a derivative of milk production, the types of amino acids in whey proteins are closely related to the amino acids required by the human body. Whey proteins also have proportionately more sulfur-containing amino acids and contain a relative surplus of a variety of essential amino acids. In particular, whey protein contains about 2.5% cysteine, a sulfur amino acid known to increase the cellular level of glutathione, a potent antioxidant.

ROLE FOR ANTI-AGING:

The proteins found in whey are widely recognized for their high biological value. A high biological value indicates the amount of protein absorbed and retained by the muscles in relation to the amount consumed. Inasmuch as protein is intimately involved in anabolism (protein synthesis and muscle growth), whey protein may be the best candidate for maximizing muscle growth. Whey also features one of the highest profiles of branched-chain amino acids (BCAA’s) compared to other protein sources. Diets high in BCAA’s demonstrate greater signs of muscle preservation when the body is in a catabolic state (breakdown of muscle tissue). Severe metabolic stresses such as sepsis, major operations, burns, strenuous exercise, and certainly fending off infection, are associated with accelerated muscle catabolism. Of the various forms available (concentrate, peptides, hydrolysate, etc.), whey protein isolate is considered superior by many because of its purity, high glutathione content and increased bioavailability.

THERAPEUTIC DAILY AMOUNT:

Most people should not need to take supplementary whey protein, as they should obtain enough protein from their diet. However, people who have undergone recent trauma, surgery, and those who participate in strenuous exercise may benefit from taking up to 25g of whey protein per day.

MAXIMUM SAFE LEVEL: Not established

SIDE EFFECTS/CONTRAINDICATIONS:

Whey may be contraindicated if you have milk allergies. Long-term, excessive intake of whey protein, as with other proteins, is not recommended as it may be associated with deteriorating kidney function and possibly osteoporosis.

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