Can Vegans Take Whey Protein? A Comprehensive Guide

No, whey protein is not vegan as it's derived from milk making it a dairy product (of animal origin). Learn about potential side effects & alternatives.

Can Vegans Take Whey Protein? A Comprehensive Guide

No, whey protein is not vegan.


protein is derived from milk, making it a dairy product (of animal origin). If you have any type of allergy or intolerance to dairy products, or follow a strict vegan diet, you shouldn't consume anything that contains whey protein. Resistance training has been one of my favorite ways to exercise for the past 25 years.

In my teens and twenties (now I'm 40), I would drink a whey protein shake after every workout. I always felt really bloated afterwards and my instinct was a complete wreck when I hit my thirties. I consulted countless doctors, including several specialists in gastroenterology, and spent some time in the hospital trying to find out what was wrong with me. My story is anecdotal and doesn't give much credence to the plants' versus whey protein argument.

However, once I started researching the science, I discovered that while whey may be an effective source of protein for some, it may be doing more harm than good for others. Whey is a well-absorbed source of protein that is very useful for achieving specific daily protein goals. Its benefits include increasing muscle (along with resistance training), limiting muscle loss during low-calorie diets, and moderately limiting fat gain during periods of excessive calorie intake. These effects aren't unique to whey protein, but it's likely to be more effective than most other protein sources per gram.

Harvard Medical School states that one of the possible side effects of dairy-based proteins, such as whey, is digestive discomfort. People with dairy allergies or problems digesting lactose may experience gastrointestinal discomfort if they use milk-based protein powder. The chronic and unguided use of whey protein supplements without professional guidance may cause some adverse effects, especially on kidney and liver function. In short, most of the evidence on the bioavailability of protein powders is anecdotal.

There is NO significant evidence to support that whey protein is more effective than other protein sources. Contrary to popular opinion, whey protein is no better than vegan protein for weight loss either. So vegetable protein powders like rice, hemp, peas, and soy must be better for you, right? The potential side effects of whey protein may outweigh its benefits if you're lactose intolerant. And since it's estimated that 65% of people are lactose intolerant, it's logical to think that many of them probably shouldn't consume dairy-based proteins, such as whey.

Only consume all-natural ingredients that you recognize as real foods that are grown in the U. S., Canada and Europe. When in doubt, ask the manufacturer how their proteins are made, where they come from and if their ingredients are organic. If they don't give you this information, it's time to choose another protein powder, whether your protein of choice is whey, vegetable, or something else.

I tried Shakeology for a few months and loved it but it got too expensive so I switched to Vega protein powder which filled me up more but doesn't have the prebiotics or probiotics like Shakeology. I recently restarted Shakeology again and now have digestive problems on a daily basis. Is there much difference between the two besides cost? What could be causing the problem? Shakeology uses a lot of ingredients and the problem with companies that use a lot of ingredients is that they can make it more difficult to accurately determine what food you might be reacting to. Certain probiotic strains also affect people differently or could it be the sugar content that causes your digestive problems? It's very difficult to say what exactly is causing it.

What do you think of Isagenix dairy-free? Long list of ingredients including xanthan gum. What do you think of sunflower lecithin? A flavourless one sounds good to me. See the Vega Review and Plant Protein Compare publications. Could you give us some recipes for athletes that use pure plant-based protein powder? Cocoa fat burning shake 1 tablespoon of Pure Food cocoa protein powder 1 cup of coffee 1 tablespoon of coconut oil 1 tablespoon of cinnamon Handful of ice 2 cups of water (or almond or coconut milk) What about pure pea protein? There is only one ingredient - organic pea protein that has been sprouted and fermented is the best.

Vegan protein powders are an excellent supplement for people who follow a vegan diet whether your goal is to lose weight, gain muscle mass or lead a busy lifestyle your daily protein intake could be achieved a little more easily with a spoonful of delicious vegan protein powder. Protein pudding (or ice cream) 1 tablespoon of vanilla protein powder from Pure Food 1-2 tablespoons of almond butter (peanut butter works too) 1 to 3 ounces now many plant-based protein powders are so delicious and creamy that most people can't tell the difference between vegan protein or whey protein. This plant-based protein will generally give you about 16 grams of plant-based protein per 30-gram serving however whey protein is made from milk which is an animal product and not from meat so it is generally appropriate for vegetarian consumption people who follow a vegan diet will most likely choose not to consume whey protein since they avoid both animal products and those produced by animals (e.g.). It is slightly lower than the well-known pea protein but as an added benefit hemp protein also contains an ideal proportion of omega 3 & 6 which help promote better heart health while plant-based protein powders have become much more common options in recent years whey is still more available and generally has a lower cost a 30-gram scoop of pea protein will provide you with about 15 to 20 grams of protein per serving depending on the brand I've been using organic vegetables and vanilla flavor from Vega as well.

Ashley Wools
Ashley Wools

Infuriatingly humble food advocate. Friendly bacon specialist. Friendly beer scholar. Total tvaholic. Award-winning tv junkie. Extreme twitter trailblazer.