Whey Protein Increases Healthy Lifespan

By Michael A. Smith, MD

Whey is often thought of as just a high-quality source of protein for athletes. However, emerging research is showing that the branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) and other fractions found in whey protein actually mimic many of the longevity benefits of calorie restriction.

In fact, studies on various organisms (including middle-aged mice) have shown that supplementing with BCAAs and other components in whey can increase median life span by up to the equivalent of 9.6 years, in human terms. The implications of this are very exciting, to say the least.

Here's the bottom line: Whey protein may be able to help us reap some of the anti-aging rewards of calorie restriction without the rigors of extreme food deprivation. In other words, it may ultimately help us live longer lives.

Watch our own Dr. Michael Smith explain in the short video below:

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14 comments :

Stephen Knows Cancer said...

Wow, this is extremely exciting! I have never been happier that I drink whey protein once in a while, and now I might try and make sure that I get a little more here and there. In the studies you reference here, did subjects have to supplement in a large quantity of whey protein to achieve that increase in median life span?

Life Extension said...

Stephen Knows Cancer - Hi! The study was performed on middle-aged mice, not people. They were given a diet enriched with branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). Whey is a rich source of BCAAs.

Anonymous said...

pea protein as higher BCAAs I think

Bodybulding said...

I know Whey is healthy for us but not know in deeply and you give us knowledge on supplementing with BCAAs and other components in whey can increase median life span by up to the equivalent of 9.6 years, in human terms. I think you give us accurate data i.e. 9.6 year. Whey is best for healthy life span....

Ankush Thakur said...

I total agree, whey protein powder is extremely important for athletes and bodybuilders because I have already used whey protein supplements and it is good for health without any side effects. check to this product : http://goo.gl/42I3RP

HealthGym said...

I am dilemma about whey proteins. I go to gym everyday so can you suggest me which is the best supplements for bodybuilding ?

Ankush Thakur said...

Protein is essential for everyone, it is made up of 20 amino acids, and they are essential to the regular daily function of skin, muscles, and other organs.

Ankush Thakur said...

Whey protein quality is one of the best for bodybuilders. I like whey protein waffles and it is very yummy and health because we need healthy nutrition for body.

Life Extension said...

HealthGym - Consider whey protein isolate, creatine, and branched chain amino acids. We hope this helps!

Ankush Thakur said...

Whey Protein contains an accurate combination of amino acids and is one of the healthiest ways to add proteins to your diet for the healthy lifestyle.

Unknown said...

Please address the issue of insulin spikes caused by whey protein and whether this leads to insulin resistance.

Life Extension said...

Unknown - There have been studies showing that whey protein enhances the secretion of insulin which was reflected in lower glucose levels. Diabetics have an impaired insulin response, which is the reason they have high sugar levels after a meal. Insulin is the hormone that allows the body to use sugar as a source of fuel. These links may be helpful: http://ow.ly/Db3N301GK7e & http://ow.ly/8Fsv301GKbN.

otto9B9otto said...

Whey protein, rich in branched chain amino acids (mostly leucine) is not risk-free.

I am an engineer, not a doctor. This lack of medical background makes relying on PubMed reports a bit hazardous because not all research on PubMed is well done, and also, conflicts of interest too often go unreported. The solution, for a health enthusiast such as myself, is to rely on experts that I have come to trust, both in their integrity, and in their expertise. One such expert is Dr. Michael Greger, who who has been endorsed by Kaiser and by the Mayo Clinic. Here is his warning on leucine, the major protein in whey:

http://nutritionfacts.org/video/prevent-cancer-from-going-on-tor/

Here is a particularly good video on "complete" proteins such as, again, leucine. Using the building block analogy, he explains, to those of us who are not biochemistry geeks, why cancer loves high-quality proteins:

http://nutritionfacts.org/video/higher-quality-may-mean-higher-risk/

Another source that is trustworthy is major medical and scientific journals, such as Nature:

http://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v19/n7/full/nm.3217.html

And BioMed Central:

http://cancerandmetabolism.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/2049-3002-2-6

MDPI presents an excellent diagram of the biochemical pathways from BCAAs to both cancer and diabetes:

http://www.mdpi.com/2218-1989/3/4/931

Here is another major journal that links BCAAs to diabetes, especially in combination with a high-fat diet:

http://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/abstract/S1550-4131(09)00040-0

Nature, again, chimes in on this:

http://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v17/n4/abs/nm.2307.html

Life Extension said...

otto9B9otto - Thank you for providing us with this information. We believe whey protein is very beneficial for individuals and balanced levels of branched chain amino acids are needed for health. In fact, studies have demonstrated that whey is superior to other dietary proteins for promoting healthy gene function. These studies may be helpful: http://ow.ly/lJnQ301JyKd & http://ow.ly/bzwW301JyNN & http://ow.ly/9R7q301JyTS.

Additionally, whey protein contains the correct balance of branched chain amino acids. Check out this article on branched chain amino acids: http://ow.ly/UdH7301JzjF.

If you have a specific health concern or have more thoughts regarding whey protein, we would strongly encourage you to call our Wellness Specialists at 1-800-226-2370.

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