By: A. Simpson | Last Updated: March 04 2018 |
Protein is arguably the most important macronutrient currently in existence. Not only is protein vital for muscle maintenance and repair, it also plays a crucial role in cellular health and function. Getting enough protein each day from whole food sources can sometimes be difficult, which is why so many of us are turning to whey protein powders. Whey protein is the most popular supplement on the planet, and when you discover just a few of the key health benefits that it provides, it’s easy to see why. Here are 4 health benefits of whey protein.
Whey promotes muscle growth – One of the main reasons why whey protein powders are so popular in the health and fitness community, is the fact that it promotes muscle growth. Whey protein is enriched with amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein molecules, and therefore, are the building blocks of muscle tissue. Whey contains an amino acid known as leucine, which stimulates a process known as protein synthesis. There is a great deal of science behind this process, but long-story-short is that protein synthesis allows your body to repair bigger and stronger muscle fibres, in higher quantities.
Whey can reduce blood pressure – Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is often a precursor for potentially fatal conditions such as strokes and heart attacks. It also contributes towards a wide range of other serious medical conditions. Whey protein contains bioactive peptides called lactokinins, which serve as ACE-Inhibitors in the body. These ACE-Inhibitors have been found to reduce blood pressure in individuals with abnormally high blood pressure.
Whey can prevent food cravings – When you’re trying to eat healthily and watch what you’re eating, there is nothing worse than suffering with an attack of the dreaded food cravings. By drinking a whey protein shake however, you can pretty much eradicate these cravings completely, and here’s why. Protein is slow-digesting, even whey, which is considered a fast-absorbing protein. Therefore it takes the body longer to break it down and digest it, keeping you feeling full for longer. Not only that, but whey has been scientifically proven to reduce a person’s ghrelin levels. Ghrelin is a hormone responsible for hunger and food cravings, and the more you have, the hungrier you are, and the more appealing junk food will likely be to you.
Whey promotes cardiovascular health – According to a series of studies conducted by the Department of Food Science and Nutrition at Iowa State University, whey protein can potentially promote a healthy cardiovascular system. Whey lowers blood pressure, which in itself helps the heart and the arteries, but it has also been found to lower LDL cholesterol, and boost HDL cholesterol. HDL cholesterol is known as good cholesterol as it promotes optimal health and well-being, whereas LDL is known as bad cholesterol because it is responsible for clogging the arteries, which again, can lead to heart attacks and cardiovascular disease.