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Differences Among Whey Protein


Most people on this forum hopefully know the differences between casein, whey, and other types of protein like the dreaded "soy"...But im curious about the differences in WHEY protein.

I wanted to know if there were big differences among whey protein: hydrolysate, isolate, and concentrate

Whether if there exist big or small differences, could somebody share some information, articles or w/e else that can help exlain the differences.

Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.


The major differences I know of are in the rate of digestion and the price. Whey concentrate is the cheapest, and is typically moderatly slowly digesting (~1 hour). Isolate and hydrolysate are more quickly digesting and more expensive (in fact, hydrolysate is already partially digested for you using enzymes).

For my personal use, I use concentrate in the morning and isolate post-workout for the fast degestion.


There not much significant difference between the WHEYs.

Whey concentrate has the carbs (lactose) and fats left from the milk it was derived from. It also has some immunoglobulins that CAN help the immune system (I think this fact is insignificant however).

Whey isolate is better filtered, leaving just protein. Isolate protein is carb free and fat free. Whey isolate does not have the immune boosting immunoglobulins.

Whey hydroslate is also just protein, having carbs and fats filtered out. Hydroslate is protein that has been hyrdolysized, meaning it has been broken down (digested) already. It is broken down into smaller peptides (chains of amino acids that form protein) so digestion is quicker (because some digestion has occured already).

IMO, the absorption rates of all the above are very similar. Hydroslate, although absorbing quicker (at least in theory) will MOST likely lead to inperceptible real world results. Its not worth worrying about. The quality of the protein and the reputation of its manufacturer is more important.


Question for Elusive.

For a PWO Shake, would there be any appreciable difference between mixing whey concentrate and whey hydroslate with waxy maize and bcaas?

Sorry, for singling you out, you just seem to know your stuff.


Do you guys find regular whey protein powder (MOSTLY concentrate and some isolate) + dextrose to be an adequate post workout shake in lieu of SURGE....I understand SURGE is much better, but I'm broke dudeee


most people use waxy for the gastric emptying. adding wheys is not a good idea as far this imo. unless your getting very very highly refined hydros. sticking with bcaa and creatine is best option.

the rest of the benefits of waxy is somewhat murky so it really depends on what you believe.


Invictica- I'm not sure. I've heard Justin Harris say that as long as the WMS is in a 3:1 ratio it'll be fine. I'm not sure of the molecular weights of concentrate, isolate and hydroslate. I would imagine that isolate and hydroslate would have a very similar molecular weight though. In theory, Hyrdoslate would digest quicker than concentrate, being absorbed quicker.

This is all based on the fact that hydroslate goes through minimal digestion in the stomach (b/c it is partially digested previously) and gets finished up digesting/absorbing in the small intestine. However, I think this whole process is pretty much independent (technically) of osmostic pressures.

Waxy Maize Starch will get pulled through the stomach because of its low osmolality, not because its digested'ness (new word). Im ranting, but I think what I'm saying is, Hyrdoslate, although quicker digested/absorbed still has to take its time pooling in the stomach for a while until released into the Small Intestine. Waxy Maize Starch works its way to the Small Intestine.

So, either choice concentrate or hydroslate, will not be able to "keep up" with WMS. Point being, it won't matter which one you choose.

IMO, there would be no difference (muscle recovery/results wise) choosing any combination of whey with any combination of carb (WMS, Dextrose, Maltodextrin, Lactose, w.e ect..). When it comes down to it, we're talking about a difference of less than an hour of absorbtion time, maybe less than 30 mins.

pasteee- That PWO shake would be fine.


Thanks for response Elusive, definetly makes sense.


Thanks Elusive, really appreciate the advice.


Not to be argumentative, but I've noticed significant differences between using WPH and other whey proteins PWO.

As long as the degree of hydrolysis is high enough, a good WPH will be primarily comprised of tripeptides, dipeptides, and free aminos, which means that it bypasses the digestion process required by intact proteins and is "absorbed" more efficiently and faster.

As for waxy maize, I've found Will Brink's article on it useful. I don't have a link, but I'm sure you can find it via Google. In a nutshell, he calls it a scam.


I'm not "backing" waxy maize, because like I said above, I don't think it all matters in the end. However, Justin Harris dismissed Brink's analysis of WMS on MD's Podcast. Brink ignores the high molecular weight of WMS and its osmolality and only focuses on the studies that tested its total end replensih of glycogen in athletes (compared to other carb sources). WMS doesn't claim to replenish MORE glycogen than other carbs. Brink then goes on to say that Vitargo and WMS are not the same. This is irrelevant because they both share the same molecular weight and osmolality which would lend to the same function.


Not to nitpick, but this isn't necessarily true as other factors can play a role.