Doubts Related To Whey Protein

1. What will happen if I consume whey protein and don't work out?
Nothing bad will happen if you consume whey protein and don’t work out. Whey is a form of food or one can say it’s simply a purified form of a nutrient. If you don’t work out proteins will be used in other bodily functions. We recommend not to exceed your daily protein requirements. Use our protein calculator to determine your daily protein requirement.
2. What are the side effects of Whey protein?
There are no known, scientifically proven serious side effects that can be directly related to whey protein. Whey protein is simply a type of food. USFDA (USA) and FSSAI (India) have both declared whey as safe to consume. Still, people with existing kidney and liver conditions should consult their physicians regarding the intake of whey proteins.
3. Does Whey protein make you lose weight?
Whey protein will not make you lose weight, to lose weight a strict diet regime and workout plan needs to be followed. Whey protein forms an important part of a weight loss diet to supply the muscle with protein and calories for energy.
4. Does Whey protein affect kidneys?
No, when taken within recommended does whey protein does not affect kidneys, unless there is pre-existing damage or dysfunction.
5. Does using Whey protein cause any harm?
Using whey within the daily recommended allowance does not cause any harm to a healthy individual.
6. Is it safe to consume raw Whey?
Yes, it is safe to consume raw whey, actually raw whey is not the correct term, and it should be unflavored whey. Flavored whey offers added benefits such as digestive enzymes (if added by manufacturer), improved mouthfeel and consistency, stability, better flavors, which helps to improve the acceptability of whey.
7. Does Whey protein kill the sex drive or testosterone levels?
No, whey protein does not. Studies show that Whey protein increases intracellular testosterone level, meaning it moves testosterone from blood circulation into the cell where it can perform its function.
8. Is it good to take Whey protein twice a day?
Yes, it is fine to take Whey protein twice a day. It is suggested that to divide your required amount of protein into 2-3 portions and consume it throughout the day rather than consuming it all at once.
9. Is Whey protein essential for increasing muscle size?
Amino acids present in proteins form building blocks of muscles. Also, the essential amino acids present in protein are required for muscle protein synthesis. It’s not that whey protein causes an increase in muscle size, it’s that when you stress your muscles when you work out, your muscles tear and break, the amino acids are then used to repair these broken muscle fibers which result in increased size and strength. Maintaining positive nitrogen balance is required to build and increase muscle size, higher protein intake increases the amino acid concentration in body which helps to maintain positive nitrogen balance.
So protein is essential for muscle growth, whether it comes from whey, eggs, chicken, soy it does not matter.
10. Is Whey vegetarian?
Yes, since whey is obtained from milk and is a dairy product, it is considered vegetarian. Its class is similar to cheese, butter, paneer, and milk powder.
11. Is fake whey protein harmful?
Yes, fake whey protein can be very harmful, since one does not know what has been used for the adulteration of proteins. So don’t take chances, if you know it’s fake, don’t use it.
12. What is the glycemic index of whey protein -isolate?
Glycemic index ranks carbohydrate in food products depending on how it affects glucose level in the body and thus insulin level. Food with a high glycemic index contains carbs that are released and absorbed at a high rate which causes a spike in insulin level, whereas food products with a low GI are slowly absorbed.
Glycemic index is measured for food containing a high level of carbohydrates, since Whey Isolate does not have any significant amount of carbs the GI is not measured. If measured it would be at the lower end of the scale.
13. Can diabetic patients take whey protein?
Yes, diabetic patients can take proteins, Whey Isolate would be a good choice of protein supplement for a diabetic patient given it has low to none amount of carbohydrates. Protein supplements provide a much-needed protein source to the patient which can help increase muscle strength and act as an energy source in the absence of food containing carbohydrates.
14. What will happen if we have whey protein and don't work out?
Nothing will happen if you consume whey protein within your daily recommended limit and don’t work out. Protein is an important macronutrient required by the body and whey provides a pure form of it. This protein will be used in the body for numerous daily functions.
It will be simply used as food by the body since it is food.
15. What are some common misconceptions about whey protein?
– Whey protein causes kidney stones.
– Whey protein causes cancer.
– Whey should not be used if you don’t work out.
– Whey can cause kidney damage.
– Whey reduces sex drive.
– Whey protein is a magic pill that can build muscles overnight.
– All whey proteins are the same.
– Cheap whey proteins are equally good as expensive whey proteins.
– If whey protein forms foam it’s fake.
– If whey protein does not mix very well, then it’s fake.
– Whey is only for bodybuilders.
– Whey protein should give results within a few days or weeks.
16. Is protein powder a must for bodybuilding?
No, protein powder is not a must for bodybuilding. If you can fulfill your daily protein requirement from other food sources then you don’t need to use whey protein supplements. Whey protein is nothing but a convenient way to consume nutrients.
17. How can lactose intolerant people reduce the side effects of lactose without cutting down on milk?
Take a lactase supplement, it helps to reduce symptoms of lactose intolerance. There are plenty of lactase supplements available online or at a medical store.
18. Why protein farts smell like eggs?
Protein digestion primarily takes place in the stomach and small intestine, a portion of the protein that remains undigested travels to the large intestine and colon where it gets fermented by microbes. This microbial fermentation releases sulfur from amino acids.
Sulfur gas smells bad, which results in stinky farts. Undigested protein from eggs follows the same path, hence protein farts smell like eggs.
One way to avoid that is to gradually increase your protein intake or take digestive enzymes to improve protein digestion.
19. I am lactose intolerant. Can I take whey isolate?
Yes, definitely. Carbs are the source of lactose in milk products.
But even it gives you trouble (Hopefully not) take a lactase enzyme supplement.
20. Why Whey protein is so expensive given it's a byproduct of cheese and milk?
Just because it is a byproduct does not mean it’s a waste product. It has great nutritional value.
Granted, it is a byproduct of cheese manufacturing, but it is not consumed in its original form. A lot goes into it to make it consumable in its final form.
After it is separated from cheese, it goes through filtration, separation, purification, drying, and testing. To know in detail about the manufacturing process read What is Whey and how it is manufactured?
A filtration plant alone can cost upwards of 50cr. and additional research and development are also required.
After which it has to be packed, distributed across countries/ continents through a vast chain of importers, distributors, and again to a manufacturer who makes the final product.
Once with a manufacturer, it again has to be tested, then processed to make it into the final product. Once that is done it is again packed and tested. Then it is passed to distributors and then to retailers.
Every step of manufacturing, packing, testing, margins of international importers, local traders, distributors, retailers, marketing of the product adds to the cost of the final product, and yes the taxes.
So there are a lot of steps involved which add to the cost thus making it expensive.
21. Is protein powder a necessity in working out?
The normal protein requirement for an adult is around 0.8–1.2 grams/ kg of body weight. For a person who works out, it’s around 2 grams of protein/ kg of body weight.
No, you don’t need to supplement your diet with protein powder if you can fulfill your daily protein requirements through your diet. There are numerous vegetarian and non-vegetarian food sources that provide plenty of proteins such as beans, soy, nuts, lentils, mean, egg, fish, etc.
Vegetarian sources have a lower amount of proteins compared to non-veg sources.
Given the typical Indian diet or certain dietary restrictions, it’s not always possible to meet daily protein requirements.
For example, let’s assume for an individual weighing 70 kg who works out about 5 times a week. The protein requirements for him would be 140 grams per day. To achieve that intake he would have to consume about 450 grams of chicken breast per day or 23 eggs every day or a combination of a certain food, which is not always possible.
That’s where protein supplements come in. Protein supplements are nothing but a convenient way to consume your nutrition.
Besides protein supplements provide cleaner and pure proteins without much other macro and micro-ingredients. So you don’t have to worry about concurrently consuming fats, cholesterol along with eggs and chicken.
Also, whey protein gets absorbed faster than other sources.
You can always get about 70 grams of protein through your diet easily if it is well designed. Rest you can supplement with protein powder.
So, to conclude you don’t need protein supplement if can meet your daily protein requirements through your regular diet.
But taking protein supplements makes it far much easier and convenient to reach those daily requirements.
22. Why should people who are lactose intolerant take whey protein isolate?
Carbohydrates in milk are mostly in the form of lactose, Whey Isolate is the purest form of protein obtained from milk and have almost few to none carbohydrates.
Whey proteins with lower concentration contain few grams of carbs (Lactose) from milk, to avoid any lactose Whey Isolate is a better choice for Lactose intolerant people.
23. Can we give whey protein to kids?
Yes, you can give whey protein to kids. Whey is used as a protein source even for likes of Horlicks, baby formulas and so.
Just determine how much of protein does your kid needs, and use.
According to the National Institute of Health (US), it is
1. for Age 0–0.5 year- 2.2 gm/kg of body weight
2. 0.5- 1 year- 1.6 gm/ kg of body weight
3. 1–3 year- 1.2 gm/kg of body weight
4. 4–6 year- 1.1 gm/ kg of body weight
5. 7–10 year- 1 gm/ kg of body weight

Note: I would make one suggestion though, purchase raw whey protein if you can, add a little chocolate syrup for taste or any other flavor to it along with water/milk.
Most of the commercially available whey proteins use artificial sweeteners which are not recommended for kids.

24. Which type of protein is best for lean muscle?
Whey Protein Isolate is the best source of protein if you are after lean muscles. It contains fewer carbs and fats as compared to whey protein concentrate.
Also, Whey Protein Isolate has higher purity which delivers a higher amount of proteins per serving.
25. Why does whey protein spike insulin like sugar?
When digested protein is broken down into Amino Acids which can trigger insulin release.
According to one study whey protein is demonstrated to trigger more insulin release than casein protein. About 35 grams of protein is required to trigger insulin, while whey protein triggers an insulin response that reaches to peak within 15 minutes.
26. Why is protein powder so hard to mix with water?
GOOD quality protein powders are not that hard to mix. Don’t mind those little clumps that stick to the side, but if it forms a sticky mass that you can pick up with your fingers then I will say its trouble.
It is hard to mix then it contains a lot of other ingredients as well as proteins that may have lower solubility because of a higher degree of denaturation. Proteins with a higher degree of denaturation exhibit poor solubility.
Also do not mix protein with a hot beverage, it may be another cause of poor solubility.
27. Do protein powders denature when mixed with hot beverages? Would this make them less effective?
Yes, proteins denature when exposed to heat. So mixing protein powders with a hot beverage will denature them.
The degree of denaturation depends on temperature and exposure time. So the extent of denaturation will depend on how hot the beverage is and how long it was mixed for.
Denaturation causes a protein to unfold and lose their structure. The unfolding of proteins causes them to become less active.
Also, denatured proteins are less soluble and have decreased foam-forming ability.
28. If whey protein concentrate is 80% protein, what is the other 20%?
Any food product is made up of proteins, carbs, fats, minerals, and other micronutrients such as vitamins. Everything adds up to 100%. So as per calculations if whey is 80% protein (in case of raw whey protein) then the rest of 20% consists of carbs (mostly lactose) fats, minerals, and micronutrients.
29. Why does whey protein contain a small amount of soy lecithin?
Soy lecithin is added to whey protein as an emulsifier to aid to make it “instantized” i.e. to aid in solubility and dispersion. It also gives a better mouthfeel to protein. Whey proteins without lecithin or emulsifiers are hard to get in solution and require much more shaking and also taste watery.
30. Which is the better option in between whey protein and eggs for weight loss?
Whey protein is a better choice than eggs considering your goal. Eggs have fats and Cholesterol as well (A Single Egg contains up to 5 gm of fat and around 180 mg of cholesterol) Given your goal a protein powder is a good choice. Proteins such as whey Isolate have almost no fats, carbs, and a minimal amount of cholesterol.
31. Does whey protein cause hair loss?
Well, yes and no. There are no studies that directly link Whey protein with hair loss.
It’s the testosterone levels in the body. Whey protein is known to increase testosterone, when we exercise the testosterone level in the body increases, so do some exercise contribute to higher levels of the hormone. But we need that hormone to increase for various reasons, some of which are, testosterone promotes muscle growth, helps increase energy, muscle mass, and control weight. But on the flip side testosterone produces a chemical known as DHT, higher levels of which can lead to hair loss.
32. Is whey protein harmful?
Whey protein is not harmful when consumed within limits. Whey protein has been approved as safe by USFDA (USA) and FSSAI (India). It’s been on the market for decades, it is obtained from milk by simple filtration (although advanced and sophisticated). Given its safety record and absence of any documented evidence to suggest otherwise, we can conclude that it is not harmful.
33. Does whey protein cause acne?
A range of different factors such as stress, age, skincare products can cause acne. Research shows that whey protein can cause acne but there is no conclusive proof of a direct relationship between acne and whey protein.
The diet has a complex relationship with acne, high glycemic food, high carbohydrates in diet, dairy is known to cause acne. Stop taking your protein for a few days, decrease the amount, or switch to plant-based proteins if you experience acne.
34. Is whey protein vegetarian?
Yes, Whey protein is vegetarian.
35. Does whey protein increase weight?
Whey protein along with a good diet and exercise regime can result in an increase in muscle mass which can increase weight. But whey protein won’t increase weight directly as the carbohydrates or fats do.
36. Does whey protein help lose weight?
It does not directly help lose weight, but it is an integral part of a weight loss diet to supply protein and energy in the absence of carbohydrates. Also, whey protein makes you feel full after drinking a shake, which reduces hunger. So whey protein does not directly help lose weight but helps you immensely in your weight loss process.
37. Can whey protein cause high blood sugar?
Actually, it’s the opposite, recent studies done with type II diabetic people show when fed with whey protein along with normal meal the blood sugar dropped 28%, their insulin doubled, and also gave a long-lasting insulin response.
38. Can whey protein increase weight?
Whey protein will not increase weight directly, but when combined with a good diet and regular exercise it can result in increased muscle mass which can in turn result in increasing weight, but it does not increase the weight of the way carbohydrates and fats do.
39. Is whey protein good for hair?
Studies show that whey protein has a relationship with hair fall, but there are no studies that show any direct relationship. Whey protein can cause a rise in the testosterone levels which produces a chemical named DHT which can lead to the shrinking of hair follicles in some individuals. The shrinking of hair follicles can lead to hair loss.
40. Can diabetics drink whey protein?
Yes, Whey protein is suitable for diabetic patients, especially protein which has higher purity, and low carbohydrate content can be used. Whey Protein Isolate is the most suitable protein supplement for diabetics.
41. Can females drink whey protein?
Yes, definitely. Whey protein is suitable for females.
42. Is whey protein gluten-free?
Yes, it is. Whey protein is gluten-free since Whey does not have gluten in it.
43. Is hydrolyzed whey protein bad for you?
No, hydrolyzed Whey protein is not bad for you, Hydrolyzed whey is just a predigested form of either whey protein concentrate or whey protein Isolate. Whey is predigested or cut into smaller fragments of amino acids using various enzymes, it helps to expedite the absorption process.
44. Is whey protein natural or synthetic?
Since whey protein is obtained from milk it is considered as natural or obtained from natural resources and is already present in nature, synthetic is something that does not exist in nature but is created by adding, reacting two or more ingredients to make a new substance.
45. Is whey protein safe for kidneys?
Plenty of studies show that whey protein when consumed within daily recommended limits in a healthy individual does not cause any harm to kidneys. It may however be used with caution or with prior consultation with a physician in people with pre-existing kidney conditions or dysfunction.
46. Why does whey protein give me a headache?
Whey protein under normal conditions does not cause headache, if you experience a headache after drinking whey protein, you may be allergic to whey or dairy in general. When allergic to milk our body produces immunoglobulin E, which tries to fight milk protein. In response to this our body releases histamine which can lead to sinus headache.
Switch to plant proteins or other sources of protein such as eggs if your headache persists.
47. Can whey protein cause stomach pain?
Whey protein does not cause stomach pain, but if you are lactose intolerant or suddenly increase your protein intake, you may experience bloating and gas.
48. Can whey protein increase height?
No, whey protein does not increase height.
49. Can whey protein lower cholesterol?
Whey protein may have a beneficial effect on blood fats, in one study done in overweight individual 54 grams of whey protein administered for 12 weeks. This led to a significant decrease in LDL cholesterol, which is also known as bad cholesterol.
A literature survey and analysis of 13 clinical trials show that whey protein reduced triacylglycerol but no effect was found on total cholesterol or LDL levels. So, additional studies need to be done to determine its effect on cholesterol.
50. Can whey protein substitute a meal?
Whey protein alone can not be a substitute for a whole meal. Our meal provides carbohydrates, fats, essential macro, and micro-ingredients in addition to proteins. So for a healthy lifestyle whole meal is required to provide all the macro and micros. Whey protein supplement alone is not enough.
51. Does whey protein contain estrogen?
Whey protein may contain plant estrogens if the cows from whom the milk is obtained are fed with soy feed. Since soy contains estrogen, a small amount of estrogen can be found in cow milk. But the level of these estrogens in cow milk is very insignificant or small to produce any effect. Whey protein as such does not contain estrogen unless it finds its way to cow milk through the feed.
52. Does whey protein decrease weight?
Whey protein on its own will not decrease your weight.
53. Does whey protein increase sperm count?
No, it won’t. Studies were done in male as well as mice show that whey protein does not have any effect on sperm count of male fertility.
54. Does whey protein lead to weight gain?
Whey protein does not lead to weight gain when consumed within a daily requirement and along with proper exercise. Studies show that whey protein can lead to weight loss due to making one feel satiated and reducing hunger which leads to eating less.
55. Does whey protein make you lose weight faster?
Yes, but indirectly. Studies show that consuming whey makes one feel satiated or filled leading to reducing the amount of food you eat which results can result in fat loss.
56. Does whey protein reduce belly fat?
Yes, it can, studies show that when consumed as a weight loss high protein diet led to a reduction of fat especially in the belly area. The study was done on individuals consuming a high protein vs low protein diet. In conclusion, individuals with a high protein diet reduced their belly fat significantly than individuals with a low protein diet.
57. Can I eat expired whey protein powder?
No, you should not eat an expired whey protein powder, expiry date is set by the manufacturer after undertaking stability studies, after the expiry date the product starts deteriorating, so don’t take any chances with your health.
58. Does Greek yogurt have whey protein?
No, Greek yogurt does not have whey protein, however, it has plenty of protein. If a manufacturer decides to do so, he may add whey protein to his Greek yogurt formulation, but it’s hard to find one with whey protein in it.
59. Does whey protein have soy?
No, whey protein does not have soy or soy protein in it. Some protein manufactures use something called soy lecithin in very small quantities though, it works as an emulsifier and stabilizer in whey protein products.
60. Is it safe to buy whey protein from Amazon?
Amazon does not directly sell any products, all products are sold by a third-party seller on Amazon, using Amazon as just a platform. Make sure the third party seller has good ratings, also you can confirm the seller is an authorized seller or distributor of the product. It is usually safe to buy your products directly from the manufacturers’ website which guarantees the product is coming directly from the manufacturer, it reduces the risk of fakes and adulteration taking place in the supply chain.
61. Is whey protein good for diabetics?
Yes, since whey protein does not contain any sugar (unless added by the manufacturer for specific products) and it has a very less amount of carbohydrates, it is good for diabetics. Plenty of doctors suggest protein supplements to diabetic patients to improve strength.
62. Is whey protein legal in sports?
Yes, whey protein is legal in sports. Make sure you purchase a reputed brand and it does not contain any steroids or banned substances.
63. Is whey protein only for bodybuilders?
No, it’s one of the biggest misconceptions. Whey protein can be consumed by anyone or everyone given we all need protein in our diet.
64. Is whey protein powder safe for pregnancy?
Yes, whey protein is safe during pregnancy, during pregnancy protein requirement is usually increased so doctors do suggest taking protein supplements. Take unflavored whey protein if possible or go for one which has fewer ingredients.
65. What happens when whey protein expires?
Mostly bacterial growth can take place in the protein given it is highly nutrient material, in addition to this purity of the protein may start decreasing. Other added material can also deteriorate after the expiry date.
66. Why whey protein is expensive?
Because manufacturing whey protein is an expensive process, it requires a lot of milk to make whey protein (approximately 200 liters to make 1 kg of whey protein) in addition to this lot of research goes on to make it more efficient and better, for manufacturing it requires highly advanced and sophisticated purification and filtration system which adds to the cost. Most companies in India import their raw material from overseas, which adds a lot of custom duties and transportation costs as well. This all makes whey protein expensive.
67. Does expired whey protein still work?
It might work, there may not be too much drop in the purity of whey protein after expiry. But one cannot be sure of bacterial growth that may have taken place in the expired protein which may be a lot more harmful and expensive than a new tub of proteins, so don’t consume expired whey protein.
68. Does whey protein cause gynecomastia?
No, whey protein does not cause gynecomastia, gynecomastia is caused due to a hormone called estrogen, which is a hormone present in both females and males, females, however, have a higher amount of estrogen. In males, estrogen is required for maturation of sperms and healthy libido and higher quantities of which can lead to gynecomastia. The hormone is not present in whey protein by itself unless it finds its way to cow or milk in circumstances such as if the cow has been with soy feed or milked during the late stages of pregnancy, and chances of that happening are very low. Studies show that even if estrogen is found in the whey proteins, it is present in such a tiny amount incapable of having any physiological effect.
69. Does whey protein contain Calcium?
Yes, whey protein contains a small amount of calcium. It contains about 0.5 grams of calcium per 100 grams of whey protein.
70. Does whey protein go bad?
Yes, whey protein goes bad after its expiry date, if the container is left open for a longer time or any moisture has entered the jar. The moisture or air may for atmosphere cause whey protein to go bad or smell weird.
71. Does whey protein have cholesterol?
Yes, whey protein does have a small amount of cholesterol, the quantity however is very small. The quantity is even smaller in the case of Whey Isolate.
72. Does whey protein Isolate contain casein?
No, Whey protein Isolate does not contain protein, unless added by the manufacturer for a specific formulation.
73. Does whey protein make you bloated?
Yes, whey proteins can make if bloated if you are lactose intolerant or if you are a beginner and your body is new to whey protein. For beginners, the bloating goes away in few days and for lactose intolerance, a special enzyme supplement is required to overcome this effect or they can switch to plant proteins that do not contain lactose.
74. Do athletes take whey protein?
Yes, many athletes take whey protein as a nutrition supplement.
75. Does whey protein cause impotence?
No, whey protein does not cause impotence, it does not have any direct relationship with impotence.
76. Can we build muscle without whey protein?
Yes, you can build muscles without whey proteins, or any other protein supplements gave you can fulfill your daily protein requirements with your food. Supplements are nothing but a convenient way to consume nutrition, if you can get all your nutrients through the food you don’t need any supplements.
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