There is no doubt that wheat protein provides a viable alternative to whey supplementation for those with a lactose intolerance from consuming dairy-based products. Lactose intolerance sufferers experience problems such as bloating, cramping abdominal pains, and severe tummy upsets if they consume this milk sugar.
In this article, we will look at the pros and cons of this supplement – not only with regard to helping you reach your weight loss or muscle gain goals, but also for protecting your long term cardiovascular health.
Benefits and Drawbacks
A Low Calorie Supplement
A typical scoop size of the powder will provide around 20 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat, 1 gram of sugar and 100 calories. Unlike baked goods or breakfast cereal products made with wheat, the protein powder is very low in carbohydrates too.
This low calorie content makes wheat protein a popular base for meal replacement shakes and smoothies for those on a low calorie diet. The high protein content helps keep users feeling full and satisfied, helping them to resist between-meal snacking and to stick to their lower calorie diet.
Higher Levels of Glutamine than Whey or Casein
Wheat Protein Isolate, the form with the highest percentage of protein has been taken by body builders because of the higher levels of glutamic acid/glutamine it contains by comparison to whey and casein protein. This makes it very attractive to those using supplementation in their quest to gain muscle and ideal as taken a post workout recovery drink or shake.
Because it contains absolutely no dairy products, wheat protein isolate does not contain any lactose and, as explained above, is therefore very popular with anyone suffering from lactose intolerance. In addition, many supplements have added digestive enzymes making digestion and absorption even easier and more efficient.
Gluten Content Makes It Unsuitable For Some
Wheat protein contains gluten and this is the ingredient that is most likely to cause problems for people. Some people are Celiac (also commonly spelled Coeliac) and must exclude Gluten completely from their diet. Others who are not Celiac can have a less serious gluten intolerance and, whilst it is not vital for them to exclude, or at least restrict gluten intake, it is desirable to do so because of the side effects that are widely documented. Natural News website cites six main symptoms which may suggest you have a gluten sensitivity and these range from stomach and digestive problems, headaches, mood swings, neurological problems affecting balance and problems with tingling and numbness in hands and feet, chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia (pain (sometimes severe) in muscles).
If you can consume bread made from wheat and other wheat products such as cereals and cakes without any adverse effects, you should be able to take a wheat protein powder supplement without any problems. If you are in any doubt at all, consult your Doctor or a Nutritionist.
Long Term Health Benefits of Wheat Protein Supplements
A lot of scientific studies have been carried out into the effects of increasing protein in the diet on major health issues such as Cholesterol levels and Cardiovascular Disease. Many interesting results are detailed in a review published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. The review is called:”The Effects of High Protein Diets on Thermogenesis, Satiety and Weight Loss: A Critical Review”
What Does it all Mean?
What is Thermogenesis?
Briefly, thermogenesis is extremely beneficial to anyone trying to lose weight. As the “thermo” part of the name implies, it is concerned with temperature and it refers to the process by which the body increases its temperature or amount of energy output by utilising (burning) fat cells to support this increase in the metabolic rate. It seems that increasing the amount of protein in the diet is a great way to trigger this process – whether this is by means of the food consumed or by the addition of protein supplements.
What is Satiety?
If you are dieting, satiety will be very important to you in helping your willpower! Satiety means it will help you stay feeling fuller and satisfied for longer after consuming it. It will help you to stick to your low calorie diet and resist the temptation to snack between meals by keeping those hunger pangs at bay!
Lowered Cardiovascular Disease Risks
The most compelling results of a study on the effect of a diet containing high levels of wheat protein on cardiovascular disease were published in the American College of Nutrition Journal back in 2001. The study, conducted by Dr David Jenkins and colleagues concluded that:
“High intakes of vegetable protein from gluten may have beneficial effects on cardiovascular disease risk by reducing oxidized LDL, serum triacylglycerol, and uric acid.”
This quotation explained means that your risk of heart disease, coronary artery disease and stroke could be reduced by increasing the intake of wheat protein because it:
- Lowers the amount of LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol
- Lowers the levels of Triglycerides in the blood. Triglycerides are important, we all need some -because this type of fat, found in the blood is needed for energy. However, high levels can increase the risk of heart disease and having a high level is one of the markers used by Doctors to determine whether you are at increased risk for diabetes and stroke too.
More about Triglycerides
Find out more about Triglycerides and how you can lower them by just taking a little exercise in this helpful video.
To Sum Up
Wheat protein supplementation is not suitable for everyone and if you have a gluten intolerance or have been diagnosed as Celiac, this is definitely not for you. For others, it can be very helpful in weight loss, not only because it helps you stay feeling fuller but also (and perhaps more importantly) because it helps to ‘kick start’ an increased metabolic rate, helping you to burn more fat.
As many of us are trying to lose weight, not only because we want to look great, but because we want to feel better and benefit our long-term health, wheat protein could be a great choice.
What do we recommend?
Ultimate Nutrition Protein Isolate
Why do we recommend these products?
Ultimate Nutrition is a highly regarded company, supplying only top quality products. This wheat based protein supplement has added digestive enzymes for optimum absorption. It is suitable for vegetarians and vegans – oh and did we mention it tastes great too?!