When it comes to protein, a variety of it is known. However, one of the most popular ones would be ‘whey’ protein.
Whey protein is one of the proteins predominantly present in milk. It is known for its rich variety of amino acids which can be easily absorbed by the body.
While a lot of people consume whey protein in the form of protein shakes, many people don’t know the side effects that can come with it.
Prolonged consumption of whey protein can lead to some long-term side effects which might prove to be harmful for your body.
Following are some of the long-term side effects of whey protein that one should know before consuming it:
1. Kidney problems
Whey protein consumption can hamper the regular functioning of your kidneys by increasing the plasma urea content, urinary calcium excretion, and urinary volume. This overburdens the kidneys and can lead to kidney stones. If you are consuming whey, don’t forget to increase your water and fibre intake to neutralize the same.
2. Gastrointestinal issues
Consumption of whey protein can lead to depletion of good bacteria in your gut and can increase bad bacteria which may cause stomach pain, constipation and gas. Your body may even find it difficult to digest dairy products or dairy proteins naturally.
3. Liver problems
Whey protein can also lead to liver damage over time if one consumes it without being in the habit of exercising. While it is known to aid muscle synthesis, it can act very differently and result into undesired outcomes if one consumes it without exercising. In that case, the protein goes to the liver for processing and hence, can damage the liver over time.
4. Heart diseases
Overconsumption of whey protein can affect heart activity and lead to heart arrhythmia, cardiac arrest and other heart problems. Since experts have linked high-protein sources with higher levels of saturated fats, increased blood sugar levels and higher blood acidity, whey protein can affect heart functioning.
5. Increased blood acidity
Whey protein decreases the pH level of our blood which should ideally be between 7.35 to 7.45. Whey protein powders which are made from animal milk can be quite acidic in nature, increasing our blood acidity. When our kidneys find it burdening to process extra protein, our blood becomes acidic.
When people consume whey protein, it sure does fill them up, but it can lead to an imbalance in their diet if not used as a supplement only. A low-carb, high-fat diet which weight loss enthusiasts generally follow leads to the breakdown of fats for energy but also creates ketones which over time puts a lot of pressure on the liver. Whey protein can act as a replacement for carbohydrates and hence, boost ketosis. Ketones being acidic in nature, also result in an increase in the blood acidity level.
Excessive intake of whey protein results in a mineral imbalance in the body. It can affect bones by reducing bone density which can further lead to osteoporosis.
Many people suffering from gout have experienced an increase in their pain while consuming whey protein. One should always consult a doctor before starting to consume protein supplements so that their side effects could be eliminated or at least minimised.
9. Weight gain
When people work out to gain muscle mass, they tend to eat more protein rich foods. By consuming protein rich foods in their regular diet along with protein loaded supplements, they can actually surpass their daily threshold of how much they should consume protein.