Whey Protein Concentrate
The difference; Whey protein concentrate undergoes an ultrafiltration process, in which it passes through filters that are approximately one micrometer (i.e. ridiculously small). Whey protein isolate on the other hand is formed from a longer and more complicated and stringent filtering process. To make WPI you take the ultra filtered WPC and put it through another filtering process that is 4 times smaller than the ultra filters. What does this actually mean? It means that WPC may actually be more beneficial than you think! Here’s why; Because WPC doesn’t go through the additional filtering process it contains about 5-7% milk fat, aka butter fat. ‘Fat you say? I don’t want any fat in my protein; I want the most pure protein possible! Ok, what if I told you that this butter fat actually contains anabolic growth factors not found in WPI protein? As well as higher levels of phosphor-lipids, including Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA), which is known for its ability in improving body composition! This butter fat you thought may be full of unhealthy, saturated fats, it is actually full of essential fatty acids. Because of the less stringent filtering process of WPC it does mean that it also contains higher levels of lactose, somewhere around 5%. Again, not necessarily a bad thing, unless you are lactose intolerant which means WPI may be the option for you! Lactose contains oligosaccharides that act as growth factors, toxin binding factors, anti-microbial peptides, prebiotics and immune regulators. In conjunction with the low G.I. of lactose, it is a precursor for other bioactives such as lactulose which form minerals and antioxidants.
The only downside, if it is even one, is that WPC contains a higher calorie content due to the higher fat and lactose levels. So if you’re on a calorie restricted diet, than WPI may be the way to go after all.
Still not sure what is right for you? Here’s the breakdown in a nutshell. If you want either an economical protein, or a protein which offers more growth stimulating properties you should be using WPC. If however, you are looking for a fast acting, low fat, high protein supplement, or are lactose intolerant then WPI would be the way to go.