10 Proven Health Benefits of Whey Protein Backed by Science

Whey protein isn’t only an essential method to support your muscle-building, it has some other health benefits too. Whey protein is a natural source of protein extracted from milk during the cheese production. It is very famous among competitors and weight lifters because it has the highest bio-availability of any protein on the market, which means your body will absorb it in a good quantity [1]. In addition, whey protein is one of the most extensively researched supplement in the world. Here are 10 proven health benefits of whey protein backed by science.

1. Whey Protein Reduces Inflammation

- Advertisement -

Inflammation is the body’s reaction to damage. Short-term inflammation is helpful, yet in specific situations, it might end up chronic. Chronic inflammation can be a risk factor for many chronic diseases. It might reflect fundamental medical issues or terrible lifestyle habits. An extensive survey study found that high doses of whey protein supplement reduced C-reactive protein (CRP), a key marker of inflammation in the body [2].

C-reactive protein (CRP), a primary marker of inflammation, was decreased with high doses of whey protein.

2. Whey Prevents Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease described by high blood sugar and impaired function of insulin. Insulin is a hormone that should reinforce the take-up of blood sugar into cells, keeping it inside healthy limits. Whey protein is effective at moderating blood sugar and may increase insulin sensitivity [3], [4], [5], [6]. When compared with a unique source of protein, for example, egg white or fish, whey protein appears to have the best results in controlling blood sugar limits [7], [8].

These benefits of whey protein may even be identical to those of diabetic medications such as sulfonylureas drugs. The consumption of why protein with a high-carb dinner may control blood sugar in both diabetic and nondiabetic people [4].

Whey protein helps to regulate blood sugar levels and can improve insulin sensitivity. Whey protein may also have the same benefits as diabetes drugs.

3. Whey is Best Source of Protein

Whey protein is the protein portion of whey, which is a fluid that is separated from milk during the cheese production. The body will absorb it better compared to other types of protein [1].

There are three types of whey protein powder:

  • isolate
  • concentrate
  • hydrolysate.

The concentrate is the most recognized sort and is also the cheapest. As a dietary supplement, whey protein powder is famous among weight lifters, athletes, and others for its potential benefits.

Whey protein is the protein element of whey, which is a fluid separated from milk during the cheese production process. The whey protein concentrate is the most well-known and studied form of protein.

4. Helps You Grow Muscles

Lean muscle mass decreases with age. This leads to increased body fat and raises the risk of many diseases. Exercising and a healthy diet can avoid this diversity in the body. Athletes are familiar with the benefits of whey protein, and they use high-protein meals or whey protein supplement as a successful strategy [9].

Whey protein contains a branched-chain amino acid called leucine. Leucine is the most growth-promoting (anabolic) of the amino acids [10]. Protein is essential for muscle loss prevention, and for increased strength and a good-looking body [9]. For muscle growth, whey protein is the most essential than any other particular protein, such as casein or soy [11], [12], [13].

With age, lean muscle mass decreases. This causes a rise in body fat and increases the risk of of diseases. Whey protein contains leucine, a branched-chain amino acid. Leucine is the most anabolic (growth-promoting) amino acid.

5. Whey Protein Lowers Hypertension

Various studies show that dairy products may reduce blood pressure [14], [15], [16], [17]. These effects are because of a family of bioactive peptides in dairy, the so-called “angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors” (ACE inhibitors) [18], [19], [20]. The ACE-inhibitors in whey proteins are called lactokinins, which are believed to regulate peripheral blood pressure [21]. Many animal studies have shown lactokinins beneficial effects on blood pressure [22], [23].

A few human studies have found the effect of proteins on blood pressure, and several experts find the evidence to be incomplete. One study of overweight people supplementing with 54 gm/day for 12 weeks decreases systolic blood pressure by 4% [3]. Another study found many benefits when members were consuming a whey protein concentrate: 20 gm/day for 6 weeks. Blood pressure reduced just in those that had high doses [24]. They found no effects in people with lower dose of (under 3.25 gm/day) [25].

They have shown dairy products to lower blood pressure. This is because of a family of bioactive peptides found in dairy. Lactokinins are ACE inhibitors found in whey proteins. It can control peripheral blood pressure.

6. Boosts Weight Loss Process

Increased consumption of protein is a well-known weight loss strategy [26], [27], [28]. Eating more protein may help you lose weight by suppressing appetite, promoting metabolism, and help you preserve lean muscle mass [29], [30], [31], [32]. Whey protein can provide weight loss benefits and can have a dominant effect on fat burning and satiety compared to other forms of protein [3], [33], [34], [35], [36].

Eating more protein can aid in weight loss by suppressing appetite and increasing metabolism. Whey protein has been shown to aid in weight loss.

7. Whey Protein Reduces Hunger

Satiety is a term that defines the fullness we experience while eating a meal. A few foods are more satiating than others, an effect which is intervened by their macronutrient (protein, carb, fat) composition. Protein is by a large margin the most filling of the three macronutrients [29].

Low carbohydrates dietitians are well aware of whey protein benefits. Not all proteins have a similar effect on satiety. Whey protein is more satiating than different proteins, for example, casein and soy [33], [34]. These properties make it valuable for people who need to eat fewer calories.

Satiety is a term that describes the sensation of being complete after consuming a meal. Whey protein is more satiating than other proteins, such as casein and soy. These qualities make it useful for people who need to consume fewer calories.

8. Protein Prevents Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory bowel disease is a condition characterized by inflammation in the digestive tract. It is an aggregate term for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. In both animal and human studies, whey protein supplementation has found to provide benefits in preventing inflammatory bowel diseases [37], [38]. The accessible evidence is not complete, and we need further studies to make it a solid claim.

Inflammatory bowel disease is a disorder that causes inflammation in the digestive tract. It is a common term for Crohn’s disease and ulcer. Whey protein is believed to prevent IBD.

9. Whey Protein Improves Antioxidant Defense

Antioxidants are substances which against oxidation in the body. A standout amongst the most significant antioxidants in the human body is glutathione. Unlike other antioxidants we get from the diet, the body produces glutathione on its own. In the body, the synthesis of glutathione relies on the availability of certain amino acids, such as cysteine, which is often in limited supply.

Thus, high-cysteine foods, such as whey protein, may provide benefits by boosting the body’s natural antioxidant process [10], [39]. Many humans and animal studies show that whey protein may decrease oxidative stress and increase levels of glutathione in the body [40], [41], [42], [43].

Antioxidants are compounds that protect the body from oxidation. Glutathione is one of the most important antioxidant in the human body. The body produces glutathione on its own. Whey protein has been shown in studies to reduce oxidative stress.

10. Protein Lowers LDL Cholesterol

High LDL cholesterol is a serious risk element for heart disease. In one study of obese people, 54 grams of whey protein daily, for 12 weeks, decreased LDL cholesterol [3]. Various studies have not observed the benefits of whey protein on blood cholesterol, but the lack of effects may be because of variations in the research’s design [24], [44].

A 12-week study found that consuming 54 grams of whey protein daily reduced LDL cholesterol.

Whey Protein Side Effects

Remember that taking an excessive amount of whey protein is worthless. The body can just use a constrained amount of protein at a time. Excessive consumption may cause stomach related symptoms, for example, nausea, pain, cramping, bloating, diarrhea, and flatulence.

The vast majority of people tolerate moderate protein supplementation well. Often see your doctor if you have liver or kidney issues, or if your creatinine levels are high.

Whey Protein Dosage

Whey protein is easy to add to your diet. You can get it in powder form and mix it with your smoothies, yogurts, water or milk. Up to 50 grams daily (1-2 scoops) is a standard dosage, but an athlete requires more protein than the average person. As a result, athletes commonly consume 1 g of protein per pound of body weight. Yet read guidelines on the label.

A fitness enthusiast requires more protein than the average individual. Athletes usually eat one gram of protein per pound of body weight. A normal dose is up to 50 gram per day.


Whey protein is the best way to reap the health benefits. It is a high-quality protein source that is easily absorbed and utilised by the human body. This is especially important for athletes, bodybuilders, and people looking t and strength while losing body fat. Always talk with your nutritionist before starting any supplementation program.


  1. Boirie Y, Dangin M, Gachon P, Vasson MP, Maubois JL, Beaufrère B. Slow and fast dietary proteins differently modulate postprandial protein accretion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1997 Dec 23;94(26):14930-5. doi: 10.1073/pnas.94.26.14930. PMID: 9405716; PMCID: PMC25140.
  2. Zhou LM, Xu JY, Rao CP, Han S, Wan Z, Qin LQ. Effect of whey supplementation on circulating C-reactive protein: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Nutrients. 2015 Feb 9;7(2):1131-43. doi: 10.3390/nu7021131. PMID: 25671415; PMCID: PMC4344580.
  3. Pal S, Ellis V. The chronic effects of whey proteins on blood pressure, vascular function, and inflammatory markers in overweight individuals. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 Jul;18(7):1354-9. doi: 10.1038/oby.2009.397. Epub 2009 Nov 5. PMID: 19893505.
  4. Frid AH, Nilsson M, Holst JJ, Björck IM. Effect of whey on blood glucose and insulin responses to composite breakfast and lunch meals in type 2 diabetic subjects. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Jul;82(1):69-75. doi: 10.1093/ajcn.82.1.69. PMID: 16002802.
  5. Lan-Pidhainy X, Wolever TM. The hypoglycemic effect of fat and protein is not attenuated by insulin resistance. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Jan;91(1):98-105. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2009.28125. Epub 2009 Nov 18. PMID: 19923374.
  6. Mortensen LS, Holmer-Jensen J, Hartvigsen ML, Jensen VK, Astrup A, de Vrese M, Holst JJ, Thomsen C, Hermansen K. Effects of different fractions of whey protein on postprandial lipid and hormone responses in type 2 diabetes. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2012 Jul;66(7):799-805. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2012.48. Epub 2012 May 16. PMID: 22588635.
  7. Pal S, Ellis V. The acute effects of four protein meals on insulin, glucose, appetite and energy intake in lean men. Br J Nutr. 2010 Oct;104(8):1241-8. doi: 10.1017/S0007114510001911. Epub 2010 May 11. PMID: 20456814.
  8. Mortensen LS, Hartvigsen ML, Brader LJ, Astrup A, Schrezenmeir J, Holst JJ, Thomsen C, Hermansen K. Differential effects of protein quality on postprandial lipemia in response to a fat-rich meal in type 2 diabetes: comparison of whey, casein, gluten, and cod protein. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Jul;90(1):41-8. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2008.27281. Epub 2009 May 20. PMID: 19458012.
  9. Paddon-Jones D, Rasmussen BB. Dietary protein recommendations and the prevention of sarcopenia. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2009 Jan;12(1):86-90. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e32831cef8b. PMID: 19057193; PMCID: PMC2760315.
  10. Kimball SR, Jefferson LS. Signaling pathways and molecular mechanisms through which branched-chain amino acids mediate translational control of protein synthesis. J Nutr. 2006 Jan;136(1 Suppl):227S-31S. doi: 10.1093/jn/136.1.227S. PMID: 16365087.
  11. Hartman JW, Tang JE, Wilkinson SB, Tarnopolsky MA, Lawrence RL, Fullerton AV, Phillips SM. Consumption of fat-free fluid milk after resistance exercise promotes greater lean mass accretion than does consumption of soy or carbohydrate in young, novice, male weightlifters. Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Aug;86(2):373-81. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/86.2.373. PMID: 17684208.
  12. Tang JE, Moore DR, Kujbida GW, Tarnopolsky MA, Phillips SM. Ingestion of whey hydrolysate, casein, or soy protein isolate: effects on mixed muscle protein synthesis at rest and following resistance exercise in young men. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2009 Sep;107(3):987-92. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00076.2009. Epub 2009 Jul 9. PMID: 19589961.
  13. Pennings B, Boirie Y, Senden JM, Gijsen AP, Kuipers H, van Loon LJ. Whey protein stimulates postprandial muscle protein accretion more effectively than do casein and casein hydrolysate in older men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 May;93(5):997-1005. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.110.008102. Epub 2011 Mar 2. PMID: 21367943.
  14. Seppo L, Jauhiainen T, Poussa T, Korpela R. A fermented milk high in bioactive peptides has a blood pressure-lowering effect in hypertensive subjects. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Feb;77(2):326-30. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/77.2.326. PMID: 12540390.
  15. Kawase M, Hashimoto H, Hosoda M, Morita H, Hosono A. Effect of administration of fermented milk containing whey protein concentrate to rats and healthy men on serum lipids and blood pressure. J Dairy Sci. 2000 Feb;83(2):255-63. doi: 10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(00)74872-7. PMID: 10714858.
  16. Wang L, Manson JE, Buring JE, Lee IM, Sesso HD. Dietary intake of dairy products, calcium, and vitamin D and the risk of hypertension in middle-aged and older women. Hypertension. 2008 Apr;51(4):1073-9. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.107.107821. Epub 2008 Feb 7. PMID: 18259007.
  17. Engberink MF, Hendriksen MA, Schouten EG, van Rooij FJ, Hofman A, Witteman JC, Geleijnse JM. Inverse association between dairy intake and hypertension: the Rotterdam Study. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Jun;89(6):1877-83. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2008.27064. Epub 2009 Apr 15. PMID: 19369377.
  18. Yamamoto N, Takano T. Antihypertensive peptides derived from milk proteins. Nahrung. 1999 Jun;43(3):159-64. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1521-3803(19990601)43:3<159::AID-FOOD159>3.0.CO;2-R. PMID: 10399348.
  19. FitzGerald RJ, Meisel H. Milk protein-derived peptide inhibitors of angiotensin-I-converting enzyme. Br J Nutr. 2000 Nov;84 Suppl 1:S33-7. doi: 10.1017/s0007114500002221. PMID: 11242444.
  20. Margaret M. Mullally, Hans Meisel, Richard J. FitzGerald, Angiotensin-I-converting enzyme inhibitory activities of gastric and pancreatic proteinase digests of whey proteins, International Dairy Journal, Volume 7, Issue 5, 1997, Pages 299-303, ISSN 0958-6946, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0958-6946(97)00018-6.
  21. FitzGerald RJ, Meisel H. Lactokinins: whey protein-derived ACE inhibitory peptides. Nahrung. 1999 Jun;43(3):165-7. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1521-3803(19990601)43:3<165::AID-FOOD165>3.0.CO;2-2. PMID: 10399349.
  22. Nurminen ML, Sipola M, Kaarto H, Pihlanto-Leppälä A, Piilola K, Korpela R, Tossavainen O, Korhonen H, Vapaatalo H. Alpha-lactorphin lowers blood pressure measured by radiotelemetry in normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive rats. Life Sci. 2000;66(16):1535-43. doi: 10.1016/s0024-3205(00)00471-9. PMID: 10794501.
  23. Sipola M, Finckenberg P, Vapaatalo H, Pihlanto-Leppälä A, Korhonen H, Korpela R, Nurminen ML. Alpha-lactorphin and beta-lactorphin improve arterial function in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Life Sci. 2002 Aug 2;71(11):1245-53. doi: 10.1016/s0024-3205(02)01793-9. PMID: 12106590.
  24. Susan M. Fluegel, Terry D. Shultz, Joseph R. Powers, Stephanie Clark, Celestina Barbosa-Leiker, Bruce R. Wright, Timothy S. Freson, Heidi A. Fluegel, Jonathan D. Minch, Lance K. Schwarzkopf, Ashley J. Miller, Michael M. Di Filippo, Whey beverages decrease blood pressure in prehypertensive and hypertensive young men and women, International Dairy Journal, Volume 20, Issue 11, 2010, Pages 753-760, ISSN 0958-6946, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.idairyj.2010.06.005.
  25. Lee YM, Skurk T, Hennig M, Hauner H. Effect of a milk drink supplemented with whey peptides on blood pressure in patients with mild hypertension. Eur J Nutr. 2007 Feb;46(1):21-7. doi: 10.1007/s00394-006-0625-8. Epub 2006 Dec 15. PMID: 17180485.
  26. Krieger JW, Sitren HS, Daniels MJ, Langkamp-Henken B. Effects of variation in protein and carbohydrate intake on body mass and composition during energy restriction: a meta-regression 1. Am J Clin Nutr. 2006 Feb;83(2):260-74. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/83.2.260. PMID: 16469983.
  27. Noakes M, Keogh JB, Foster PR, Clifton PM. Effect of an energy-restricted, high-protein, low-fat diet relative to a conventional high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet on weight loss, body composition, nutritional status, and markers of cardiovascular health in obese women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Jun;81(6):1298-306. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/81.6.1298. PMID: 15941879.
  28. Westerterp-Plantenga MS, Nieuwenhuizen A, Tomé D, Soenen S, Westerterp KR. Dietary protein, weight loss, and weight maintenance. Annu Rev Nutr. 2009;29:21-41. doi: 10.1146/annurev-nutr-080508-141056. PMID: 19400750.
  29. Paddon-Jones D, Westman E, Mattes RD, Wolfe RR, Astrup A, Westerterp-Plantenga M. Protein, weight management, and satiety. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 May;87(5):1558S-1561S. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/87.5.1558S. PMID: 18469287.
  30. Veldhorst MA, Westerterp-Plantenga MS, Westerterp KR. Gluconeogenesis and energy expenditure after a high-protein, carbohydrate-free diet. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Sep;90(3):519-26. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2009.27834. Epub 2009 Jul 29. PMID: 19640952.
  31. Johnston CS, Day CS, Swan PD. Postprandial thermogenesis is increased 100% on a high-protein, low-fat diet versus a high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet in healthy, young women. J Am Coll Nutr. 2002 Feb;21(1):55-61. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2002.10719194. PMID: 11838888.
  32. Frestedt JL, Zenk JL, Kuskowski MA, Ward LS, Bastian ED. A whey-protein supplement increases fat loss and spares lean muscle in obese subjects: a randomized human clinical study. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2008 Mar 27;5:8. doi: 10.1186/1743-7075-5-8. PMID: 18371214; PMCID: PMC2289832.
  33. Pal S, Radavelli-Bagatini S, Hagger M, Ellis V. Comparative effects of whey and casein proteins on satiety in overweight and obese individuals: a randomized controlled trial. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2014 Sep;68(9):980-6. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2014.84. Epub 2014 May 7. PMID: 24801369.
  34. Veldhorst MA, Nieuwenhuizen AG, Hochstenbach-Waelen A, van Vught AJ, Westerterp KR, Engelen MP, Brummer RJ, Deutz NE, Westerterp-Plantenga MS. Dose-dependent satiating effect of whey relative to casein or soy. Physiol Behav. 2009 Mar 23;96(4-5):675-82. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2009.01.004. PMID: 19385022.
  35. Bendtsen LQ, Lorenzen JK, Gomes S, Liaset B, Holst JJ, Ritz C, Reitelseder S, Sjödin A, Astrup A. Effects of hydrolysed casein, intact casein and intact whey protein on energy expenditure and appetite regulation: a randomised, controlled, cross-over study. Br J Nutr. 2014 Oct 28;112(8):1412-22. doi: 10.1017/S000711451400213X. Epub 2014 Sep 5. PMID: 25191896.
  36. Baer DJ, Stote KS, Paul DR, Harris GK, Rumpler WV, Clevidence BA. Whey protein but not soy protein supplementation alters body weight and composition in free-living overweight and obese adults. J Nutr. 2011 Aug;141(8):1489-94. doi: 10.3945/jn.111.139840. Epub 2011 Jun 15. PMID: 21677076; PMCID: PMC3145217.
  37. Sprong RC, Schonewille AJ, van der Meer R. Dietary cheese whey protein protects rats against mild dextran sulfate sodium-induced colitis: role of mucin and microbiota. J Dairy Sci. 2010 Apr;93(4):1364-71. doi: 10.3168/jds.2009-2397. PMID: 20338413.
  38. Benjamin J, Makharia G, Ahuja V, Anand Rajan KD, Kalaivani M, Gupta SD, Joshi YK. Glutamine and whey protein improve intestinal permeability and morphology in patients with Crohn’s disease: a randomized controlled trial. Dig Dis Sci. 2012 Apr;57(4):1000-12. doi: 10.1007/s10620-011-1947-9. Epub 2011 Oct 26. PMID: 22038507.
  39. Bounous G. Whey protein concentrate (WPC) and glutathione modulation in cancer treatment. Anticancer Res. 2000 Nov-Dec;20(6C):4785-92. PMID: 11205219.
  40. de Aguilar-Nascimento JE, Prado Silveira BR, Dock-Nascimento DB. Early enteral nutrition with whey protein or casein in elderly patients with acute ischemic stroke: a double-blind randomized trial. Nutrition. 2011 Apr;27(4):440-4. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2010.02.013. Epub 2010 Dec 16. Erratum in: Nutrition. 2011 Sep;27(9):982. PMID: 21167685.
  41. Chitapanarux T, Tienboon P, Pojchamarnwiputh S, Leelarungrayub D. Open-labeled pilot study of cysteine-rich whey protein isolate supplementation for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis patients. J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2009 Jun;24(6):1045-50. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1746.2009.05865.x. PMID: 19638084.
  42. Zavorsky GS, Kubow S, Grey V, Riverin V, Lands LC. An open-label dose-response study of lymphocyte glutathione levels in healthy men and women receiving pressurized whey protein isolate supplements. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2007 Sep;58(6):429-36. doi: 10.1080/09637480701253581. PMID: 17710587.
  43. Ebaid H, Salem A, Sayed A, Metwalli A. Whey protein enhances normal inflammatory responses during cutaneous wound healing in diabetic rats. Lipids Health Dis. 2011 Dec 14;10:235. doi: 10.1186/1476-511X-10-235. PMID: 22168406; PMCID: PMC3254143.
  44. Claessens M, van Baak MA, Monsheimer S, Saris WH. The effect of a low-fat, high-protein or high-carbohydrate ad libitum diet on weight loss maintenance and metabolic risk factors. Int J Obes (Lond). 2009 Mar;33(3):296-304. doi: 10.1038/ijo.2008.278. Epub 2009 Jan 20. PMID: 19153580.
- Advertisement -
Naeem Durrani BSchttps://defatx.com/
I am a retired pharmacist, nutrition expert, journalist, and more. My interests include medical research, and the scientific evidence around effective wellness practices, which empower people to transform their lives.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and get notified about new articles right in your inbox.

Your privacy is important to us.