Whey Protein Concentrate
Whey Protein has been the rock star of supplements for bodybuilders and athletes for the better part of a decade. It has been utilized by people who want better gains in the gym, along with providing more energy and power into their workouts. However, there is more than just one type of whey protein out there. In fact, there are three major forms of whey protein that are manufactured and sold to the consumer market. They are whey protein isolate, whey protein hydrolysates, and whey protein concentrate. This article aims to look at the composition of whey protein concentrate, and how it is different from whey isolate and hydrolysate.
How is Whey Protein Concentrate Made?
All whey protein starts from the milk of a cow. Once that milk is sent to a processing facility for pasteurization, it’s then sent out to another factory to be made into cheese. At the cheese processing facility, the curd is separated from the liquid milk. The liquid is then called “whey,” hence the term whey protein. The next step in the process is refining and processing the liquid whey down into a powdered form of protein that can be consumed for supplementation. To extract whey protein concentrate, the whey liquid is placed into a dehydration container that evaporates the liquid, and leaves the physical powder of the whey protein. Whey protein that has only gone through this first process is referred to as whey protein concentrate, so long as it is not additionally processed to remove anymore of the milk or fats from the powder
Whey protein concentrate is the cheapest form of whey protein because it is the simplest processed whey liquid. During this initial dehydration process, the liquid is pulled out and leaves about 25%-89% protein in the powder. This wide variance is determined by how high the quality of the processing was done, the more protein that is left, the better the processor. However, a lot of milk and fats are left in the composition of whey protein concentrate. In order to remove those, further processing has to be completed.
What Makes This Protein Different Than Other Proteins?
Whey protein isolate and hydrolysate are the finer and higher quality proteins as compared to whey protein concentrate. Despite being a lower grade substance, whey protein concentrate still provides enough protein per serving to make it popular with athletes. In addition, the fact that it is the cheapest of all whey protein formulas makes it a favorite for the general public.
However, serious bodybuilders, professional athletes, vegans, or individuals who are lactose intolerant need a higher quality protein than whey concentrate. This has to do with the fact that the more processed a whey protein concentrate is, the higher percentage of protein is left in the powder, and a less percentage of the composition of the whey is lactose or fat (which is what professional bodybuilders and people who are lactose intolerant don’t want).
Is This the Right Protein For Me?
If one were an athlete looking for a high dose protein supplement, or someone that is sensitive to consuming too much lactose, whey proteins isolate or hydrolysate would be better options. That being said, if one is looking for a solid protein supplement that is highly cost effective, whey protein concentrate makes an excellent choice!