Is Whey Protein Safe for People Avoiding Dairy? - A Comprehensive Guide

Whey protein offers many advantages even for those with lactose intolerance. Learn about different types of whey proteins and their benefits as well as alternatives for those avoiding dairy.

Is Whey Protein Safe for People Avoiding Dairy? - A Comprehensive Guide

Whey protein offers many advantages, even for those with lactose intolerance. It is a high-quality nutritional source that provides essential amino acids in the right amount and is easily absorbed. Milk has two types of protein, whey and casein. For people with lactose intolerance, drinking a whey shake could cause side effects such as digestive discomfort, nausea, bloating, and abdominal pain.

However, some types of whey powder contain less lactose than others and may be safe for people with lactose intolerance. Before trying any whey shake, it is important to get your doctor's approval.

Whey protein

powder is made from whey, the watery portion of milk. Sourced directly from the cow, whey contains 75% lactose, but when used in foods and supplements, the whey must be filtered, which considerably reduces its lactose content. Whey protein powders are the most stringently filtered, resulting in whey protein with very low levels of sugar and fat.

Whey isolate powders contain approximately 90% protein and are generally considered lactose-free according to The Whey Protein Institute. However, it is important to check product labels if you're not sure. Whey may be more expensive per ounce compared to plant-based protein, but you won't run out of your supply as quickly. In terms of overall efficiency and maximizing muscle growth, it seems that the benefits of whey protein supplementation cannot be exceeded. Most whey protein supplements come from cows raised on factory farms, where humane treatment and environmental sustainability cannot be guaranteed.

A trial published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition determined that whey isolate produced a faster absorption of leucine than a whey hydrolysate. However, there are plenty of protein powders available that already contain a mix of proteins to offer a complete amino acid profile, so there's no need to buy multiple powders if that's out of your budget. Rice protein is generally not associated with bloating, cramps, or other discomfort, and research in Food Chemistry shows that it may be easier to digest than whey. Whey concentrates contain more sugar than isolates and isolates contain more intact peptides than hydrolyzed ones, so none may be appropriate for people with digestion problems. Whey protein also increases the release of anabolic hormones that can stimulate muscle growth and is high in the amino acid leucine, which is known to stimulate muscle protein synthesis. Whey protein is especially popular among athletes or people looking to build muscle as it is a complete protein source that contains all the essential amino acids in adequate amounts which serve as building blocks for muscles. Unfortunately, peptide processing deprives whey hydrolysates of many of their health benefits such as boosting the immune system and maintaining healthy blood pressure and helping to control appetite and blood sugar. Because whey isolate is more processed and contains less lactose, people with lactose intolerance may not feel the effects of lactose as much as they would if they consumed whey concentrate which contains about 80 percent protein and more lactose.

Whey protein is also rapidly absorbed so the body can use protein much faster (especially compared to other types of proteins). Some research points out that milk and whey protein-based products in particular are problematic because they increase insulin secretion and cause the sebaceous glands to accelerate. If you're looking for an alternative to dairy-based proteins like whey or casein due to lactose intolerance or other dietary restrictions there are plenty of options available. On the downside as explained above lactose and whey peptides can be difficult for some people to digest. Over time consuming vegetable powders more quickly can make them more expensive than whey supplements but you don't have to sacrifice strength or muscle in the process. Whether you choose to simply avoid or reduce the amount of lactose you eat or avoid dairy products altogether try some of the alternatives to whey protein that will help you achieve your fitness goals.

With careful consideration of your dietary needs and lifestyle goals you can find a suitable alternative that will provide you with all the necessary nutrients without any adverse effects.

Ashley Wools
Ashley Wools

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