Why bloating occurs with whey protein and how it can be prevented?


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There are three main types of whey protein. The key difference between them is how they are processed.

  • Whey protein concentrate: Contains roughly 70–80% protein. It’s the most common type of whey protein and has more lactose, fat and minerals from milk.
  • Whey protein isolate: Contains 90% protein or more. It’s more refined and has less lactose and fat, but it also contains fewer beneficial minerals.
  • Whey protein hydrolysate: This form is pre-digested, allowing your body to absorb it faster.

Have you experienced symptoms such as bloating, gas, stomach cramps and diarrhea? This can occur due to multiple reasons including:

1. Some people have problems digesting whey protein 

2. Low quality protein blends with added fillers 

3. The protein brand just may not suit you. 

Now, without making things too complicated here, let’s get practical with a few suggestions for those of you who think you’re having problems with your protein supplements.

1) Switch Protein Brands

If you consistently get gassy and bloated or stuffy and mucousy after having a supplemental milk protein product, it may be time to switch brands. Your brand might have too much lactose or too high a concentration of certain protein products and either of these could be detrimental.

2) Switch Protein Types

If you switch protein brands and that doesn’t help, you may legitimately have an intolerance to the milk protein itself. In such case, you might try switching to plant based protein. Plant based protein are nowadays fortified to contain a complete compliment of amino acids.


Why bloating occurs and how it can be prevented?

The body’s failure to break down whey protein into small particles results in the formation of large peptides. These large molecules are the cause of the discomforts that many people experience after consuming a large amount of whey protein, and can include bloating, nausea and cramping. Some people may associate these discomforts up to lactose intolerance, since whey is a dairy protein.  However, lactose is not present in whey isolates.

That is why our 1Whey Protein includes ProHydrolase Digestive Enzymes.

Clinical studies have shown that certain enzyme blends are able to improve digestion and absorption of amino acids (by up to 20%) along with reduction of the immunogenic responses associated with whey protein consumption.

When consumed with a whey protein supplement, ProHydrolase Digestive Enzymes encourage pre-digestion of the protein, allowing for the release of the full content of the essential amino acids for building muscle and improving muscle recovery.

This pre-digestion also ensures formation of smaller peptides, reducing the potential for discomfort that is often associated with protein consumption. In the digestive process, whey protein is broken down into peptides, which are themselves broken down into amino acids that become absorbed in the intestinal tract. If the whey isn’t broken down properly, it is simply excreted. Often, large peptides (comprised of more than seven amino acids) may cause digestive discomfort.

Improving effectiveness of Whey Protein 

For whey protein to be effective, it must be broken down into smaller particles within 90 minutes of consumption through a process known as hydrolysis. It takes approximately 90 minutes for the whey protein to pass from the stomach through the small intestine for digestion, absorption, and assemblage into a bio-usable form for muscle synthesis. Protein that goes undigested is excreted from the body, rendering it useless to consumers hoping to improve muscle recovery.

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