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Denatured vs UNdenatured Whey: What is the difference between Denatured and UNdenatured Whey and Does it matter?


What is the difference between Denatured and UNdenatured Whey and Does it even matter?
When it comes to Whey protein the choices we have are vast and often the question we may have when researching to find the BEST Whey protein supplement is What is the difference between denatured and UNdenatured whey?  And does it make any difference?
Well, it actually makes a HUGE difference! 
The short answer:  
Denatured whey is bad and UNdenatured whey is AWESOME! ;)
But why?
Denatured vs UNdenatured Whey Protein - what you need to know before you choose!
1-  Denatured Whey:  This means that the whey protein has been processed at a high temperature, usually above 160 degrees Fahrenheit or 72 degrees Celsius. This process is also known as pasteurization.
The milk you buy in the store has been pasteurized, which means that it has been denatured or cooked at a high temperature to ensure that all microorganisms that may harm you have been destroyed.

2- UNdenatured Whey:  This is protein from whey that has not been denatured. This means that the protein must be processed in such a way that harmful organisms are destroyed, but the heat sensitive amino acids that make it bioactive, called branched chain amino acids, are not harmed. 

It has not been pasteurized, but processed at a lower temperature than traditional pasteurization in order to preserve the amino acids that are thermolabile, or destroyed by high heat.

So clearly, UNdenatured Whey protein is safer and healthier for your body and muscles than denatured whey.

Also Important to Look for in UNdenatured Whey Protein:

  • NON-GMO
  • Gluten Free
  • look for an Undentured Whey protein that comes from GRASS grazed cows that are milked according to season and have not had hormones or antibiotics used on them and NOT grain fed.
UNdenatured whey protein is a superior source of protein.  According to Dr. Michael Colgan, "Whey protein concentrate Increases Protein Synthesis and Nitrogen Balance in Human subjects, Increases Fat Loss and Confers Cardiovascular Benefits without adverse effects"

Dr Colgan goes on to explain what is important in choosing a whey protein and he discusses the extraction method which brings us back to the whole denatured v’s undenatured argument.  Denatured whey is basically extracted using high temperatures and high amounts of salt and or acid which means the protein molecule is damaged.  It pretty much means pasteurization  where as undenatured is a completely different method of extraction that does not break down the proteins.  Dr Colgan says “The way to extract milk proteins undamaged was largely developed in New Zealand, and is termed cross-flow membrane extraction technology (undenatured).  I have successfully used whey proteins extracted in this way with many world champion athletes over the last 25 years.”


Next, see our preferred UNdenatured Whey protein options here:


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