Time and again, I have had this doubt from a number of clients and viewers of my channel, that can we take whey protein if we aren’t working out?
Or a similar question, that whether whey protein intake will harm us if we don’t exercise while consuming it?
Though this is also a statement by many, who simply conclude facts themselves, and consider science to be a waste subject; that if you take whey protein and not exercise, it will harm you in multiple ways. It can be liver damage, kidney damage, bone loss, skin issues, hair loss… and whatever comes to their mind at that instance of time.
I have cleared this doubt in every possible way it has been presented to me, but it was necessary to cover it as an individual topic to clear this myth once and for all.
Let’s understand the meaning of the word ‘supplement’. In simplest of terms it would mean, ‘additional to something’. So, if we talk about dietary supplements, it simply means, additional to diet.
Why do we really need supplements?
Not going in detail, the reasons can be many like a serious medical condition, post-surgery, busy lifestyle, convenience, lack of nutritional knowledge, professional sports needs etc.
But where does the word ‘supplement’ or ‘dietary supplement’, or ‘sports supplement’ signify anything in terms of a specific cause?
In simple terms, the word ‘dietary supplement’ can be a product which we may need when any of the above situations occur, and we know what we are not able to get that nutrition from whole food.
So, how do we even relate whey protein or other protein supplements, only to exercise?
A whey protein supplement, may or may not be taken by someone exercising.
Pure and high-quality whey is the finest protein in supplemental form, which we can use to fulfill our protein needs, if we aren’t getting adequate protein from whole foods, because of any of the reason stated above.
A protein is a protein for the body, be it in form of whole foods or supplement. Any protein source will break down into amino acids, and get used or be a part of the amino-acid pool in the body, for future use. The body doesn’t really understand the difference between the two, when it comes to absorption.
A pure and high-quality whey is one of the most recommended supplements for all age groups including infants, kids, pregnant women, elderly, athletes, and individual of all age group and sex. Whether you are exercising or not, doesn’t have any relation to the use of protein supplement.
It is simply taken to fulfill the protein needs of the body. A sedentary person, a frail elderly, a pregnant woman, an infant, a child etc. will benefit as much from a high-quality whey protein supplement, as a professional sportsman. The difference may be the amount needed by both.
How much protein you need will vary and there have been clear guidelines set by the top nutrition bodies around the world (Click here to know more).
Therefore, whether you take a whey protein supplement, or a plant protein, it has no direct relation to exercise or any other activity. A sedentary person will have a different need in terms of amount of protein, and the amount needed will increase if you are engaged in intense workouts, and even more if you are a professional athlete.
In any case, irrespective of activity, profession, age or sex , if your nutritional needs are not being fulfilled through food, you take a supplement.