A well-known reputation of whey protein is that it has a very good amino acid profile. Now, although this sounds quite impressive, what exactly does it mean? Amino acids are an essential aspect of our life, although they can often fly under the radar and go unappreciated. For everything they do for us, don’t you think these molecules deserve just a little bit of love and appreciation? Plus with all the health benefits whey offers, diving into the role amino acids play in this particular protein can be rather fascinating.
Here is a quick, simple guide for understanding the amino acids of whey protein and the health benefits they can offer.
A Brief Guide To Amino Acids
Amino acids are simply the building blocks of protein. When you consume protein, your body breaks it down into specific amino acids which are to be used for various functions. These molecules are responsible for cell structure, protein formation, nutrient transport, tissue repair, healing, genetic transcription and countless other crucial roles. Therefore, it’s important we are providing an adequate, diverse and quality supply to ourselves to ensure all of these tasks can be covered.
The body is able to create eleven out of the twenty amino acids that we require to operate properly. As for the remaining nine, we have to get them through our diet. Although some foods contain an abundance of amino acids, others simply don’t. Therefore, consuming a diverse diet consisting of foods such as lean meats, eggs, poultry, soybeans and various plant foods can compensate and help you achieve your necessary intake of amino acids. However, there are an array of high-quality foods that offer consumers a high concentration of these nine essential amino acids, otherwise referred to as ‘complete proteins’. This is where whey protein enters the picture.
Why Are The Amino Acids In Whey Protein Significant?
When it comes to the different types of protein, whey is significant because it provides us with all nine of the essential amino acids that we require. This makes whey a very useful and simple protein supplement for athletes undergoing active strength training, vegans looking for an easy protein fix or bed-ridden elderly hoping to slow their muscle breakdown. Whey protein is also an excellent source of branched chain amino acids – a form of amino acids that are known to slow muscle wasting, increase protein synthesis and support muscle growth and repair.
How Can These Amino Acids Benefit Your Health?
An adequate supply of your essential amino acids can offer a handful of wellbeing related benefits. Actively incorporating all your amino acids through the diet can prevent muscle loss, improve general mood and sleeping patterns, improve physical performance, and enhance weight loss.
On the other hand, what happens if you don’t get enough of these essential amino acids? As your body will not store any excess amino acids that you don’t require, if you aren’t supplying an essential amino acid through your diet, muscle breakdown will occur. This is typically the first sign of an amino acid deficiency. The body has to get this amino acid from somewhere, so it will be taken from the muscle so it can be used wherever else it’s required. Various other symptoms include poor mental health, general weakness and fatigue, texture changes in skin and hair, and a weaker immune response.
By seeing just how many roles they adopt throughout our body, it’s clear how important amino acids are for our physical and mental health and wellbeing. Although to reap the rewards of these vital molecules, we need to be consuming a diverse diet to ensure we are consuming all of our essential amino acids. In return, we can avoid various health complications and achieve an improved physical performance and quality of life.