Whey is a byproduct of process for making cheese. It is very rich in protein but unfortunately its taste is not very appealing. Because of this, in order to get more protein from it, many people prefer using whey protein isolate or concentrated whey protein, which comes in form of powder.
What is whey protein isolate?
Whey isolates contain higher concentrations of pure protein and they are usually very easily absorbed. Whey isolate powders come with different flavors, such as vanilla, chocolate or strawberry, and they are usually used for making milkshakes.
These products are highly appreciated by athletes, especially by body-builders, because of the amount of pure protein they provide. Although whey protein is considered by many to be highly beneficial, it is important to understand that it does involve certain health risks and dangers.
Dangers of whey protein isolate
One of the biggest risks associated with whey protein isolates is that it is not suitable for persons who are lactose-intolerant or allergic to lactose. Even though whey protein isolates are advertised as lactose-free, they do contain from 8 to 10 percent lactose, which is, for some people, enough to cause a reaction. The allergic reaction or reaction by those who are lactose intolerant can range from digestive problems, diarrhea, bloating, nausea, vomiting, to skin rashes, wheezing, difficulty breathing and swelling of the lips, tongue and face.
The amount of protein found in whey isolates is very high and it can be dangerous for people who have kidney problems. If the function of the kidneys is impaired and they are exposed to high amounts of protein, the problem becomes much worse. In addition, excessive protein intake can actually lead to kidney problems even in persons who are otherwise healthy.
In addition, high protein intake increases the ketone levels in blood, which in turn puts too much strain on the liver, which may fail to function properly.
Too much protein also depletes the calcium levels in the body, which can be harmful for the bones and the teeth.
Another issue associated with consumption of whey protein isolate is gout. High protein intake may lead to the formation of uric acid crystals, which is directly responsible for gout.
Finally, whey protein isolate can sometimes lead to dehydration. Athletes use whey protein to allow prompt absorption of the amino acids to the bloodstream, but if the amount of protein is too high, it can actually lead to dehydration, especially if combined with strenuous workout that increases fluid loss through perspiration.