You’ve probably heard the term “whey protein,” but what is it exactly? Whey protein is a protein powder that is used to help build muscle, but it is separated into two different types: whey protein and whey isolate.
In accordance with a health article on HealthCanal, protein powder provides health benefits that can help in everyday life from body building to supporting muscle growth after gastric bypass or weight loss surgery. However, if you want to build muscle you will need to know the difference between whey protein and whey isolate to ensure you are using the correct type of protein powder.
Today we will be discussing whey protein v’s whey isolate to help you decide which protein powder is best for you.
Whey Protein vs Isolate: What’s the Difference?
So what is the difference between Whey Protein and Whey Isolate?
Whey protein is a milk-derived food product that has been processed to isolate the proteins. The whey proteins are then used in supplements or other products as an ingredient. For example a ready made protein shake.
Whey isolate, on the other hand, starts with raw milk and isolates all of its components–including lactose and fat. This produces a much more pure form of whey protein that can be consumed by those who have difficulty digesting milk or dairy products.
Is Whey Protein Dairy Free?
When it comes to the difference between whey protein and whey isolate, there are several factors that can help you determine which one is best for your needs. So is whey dairy?
Whey protein is a dairy-derived product, but whey isolate has been further processed to remove lactose so it is considered to be lactose free. Whey protein does have one gram of fat per serving whereas the whey isolate has no fat or carbs.
The difference between whey protein and whey isolate comes down to purity
If you are lactose intolerant, whey isolate is a good choice. In addition, whey isolate is a great alternative for those who are vegan or wanting to avoid diary altogether.
Whey Isolate Protein Powder vs Whey Isolate Protein Shakes
The difference between whey isolate protein powder and isolated protein shakes is that the powder form of whey isolate has a lower carbohydrate content than its shake counterpart. It also provides more protein per serving, but this can vary according to the brand.
When it comes down to choosing your whey protein there are several options available to you including whey protein isolate, whey protein concentrate, and a blend of the two.
Generally, whey protein from concentrate is less processed than whey protein isolate. Whey protein from concentrate contains more fat and cholesterol per serving compared to its counterpart, but it also contains more muscle-building amino acids. Blended proteins combine both concentrates and isolates to provide the benefits of both for greater muscle gain.
Best Protein Powder to Buy
So what is best for you? The answer depends on your nutrition needs and personal preferences.
Whey protein isolate is often chosen by those with allergies or lactose intolerance as it has been processed to remove the dairy proteins.
Those seeking to build lean muscle can choose whey protein from concentrate or a blended product for optimal results.
Remember, whichever type of protein powder you decide to use, it is important to follow the directions on the jar and make sure that your overall health permits its use.
Price: This plays a huge role in determining what type of protein powder you should buy because both types come with different price points. Whey protein isolate typically costs more than whey protein, but you are paying for a purer version of the product.
Quality: Typically speaking Whey Isolate has less fat and carbohydrates per serving, but varies depending on the brand. However, both types provide quality nutrition that can help with muscle gain or weight loss goals. So what are you waiting for, why not try one or two protein shakes to help with your weight loss journey.
Here Are Our Top Three Recommendations for Whey Protein Shakes:
- Premier Protein
- Pure Protein
- Lactose Free Muscle Milk
Premier Protein – Whey Protein Powder
This is a great option for helping support muscle growth. Premier Protein is available on Amazon and in local health stores. This protein powder is made from Whey Protein isolate and Whey protein concentrate.
Premier Protein has 30g protein per serving and has all the essential amino acids 100% from whey.
This bariatric friendly protein powder comes in three flavors, Chocolate milkshake, vanilla milshake and cafe latte.
You can mix Premier Protein whey powder with either water or milk or you can add to your favorite smoothie or add to a bariatric meal or recipe.
Premier Protein has no Soy ingredients and is Gluten Free. It also contains Vitamin D, Iron, Calcium and Potassium.
You can buy ready made Premier Protein shakes in variety packs which include banana and cookies and cream flavors.
Pure Protein – Whey Powder
Pure protein whey powder comes in a 1.75 lb container and provides essential amino acids which help support lean muscle, energy, vitality and strength.
Pure protein powder makes a great high protein drink is gluten free, low fat and contains no soy protein.
Pure protein has 25g of protein per serving and comes in vanilla and chocolate flavors.
You can buy both Premier Protein or Pure Protein as ready made shakes. Buying whey protein shakes in bulk is great if you need a grab and go style protein shake, whereas bulk powder is better for use at home.
Lactose Free Muscle Milk
Muscle Milk is a protein powder supplement that supports muscle rebuilding, muscle growth and the maintenance of muscle mass. A 5lb canister of Muscle Milk contains 50g of protein per serving and has over 20 vitamins and minerals.
This is a fantastic option for those looking for a dairy free whey powder option that supports bones and contains all the essential amino acids needed to support you after bariatric surgery or post workout.
Muscle milk is also available in ready to drink in shake format. It has Zero grams of sugar and has less than 100 calories per drink. Thus this protein shake is a great option for supporting weight loss whilst keeping you feeling full and supporting muscle maintenance and growth.
Protein Supplements vs Meal Replacements After Bariatric Surgery
Protein supplements are great for those who can’t or don’t eat solid food. Protein powder is ideal after weight loss surgery such as gastric sleeve or a gastric bypass, and helps with muscle growth/preservation along with helping you feel full longer.
Meal replacement powders (MRPs) may be used instead of traditional meals to maintain healthy nutrition post-surgery; however they’re higher in carbohydrates than protein supplements and should not be relied upon long term.
Protein powder is great as a long term supplement as it is low in calories, very low in carbohydrates and usually has no fat.