Science & Technology Correspondent
Those who work out and go to the gym regularly have seen or heard of many workout supplements that men and women use before or after they work out. The most popular supplements used are whey protein and creatine.
Whey protein is a byproduct of cheese and is sold in the forms of powders and shakes.
What is now a popular health craze was once just considered a waste product discarded by cheese manufacturers. Whey protein is so popular because it is considered a “complete” protein, meaning that it has all nine amino acids the human body needs and it is fast and easy to digest.
It is also said that whey protein assists in weight loss, aids muscle growth, enhances athletic performance and changes body composition.
The second most popular supplement is creatine. Creatine is a natural substance that helps produce creatine phosphate, which then turns into adenosine triphosphate, or ATP. ATP is the compound that is responsible for providing the energy for muscle contractions.
People take this when they are feeling lethargic but want to get a good workout.
Although both of the products may work in assisting in workouts and changing one’s look, many people do not know the serious risks that come with taking these supplements.
One of the most important problems with these supplements is that neither have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
These products fall under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA), which allows manufacturers to avoid registering their products and can result in contaminated products. Protein products were recalled in 2010 because contaminants were found in them.
These products also have potentially negative side effects. Because people are only supposed to have 45 to 56 grams of protein a day and most whey protein products have that in one or two scoops, whey consumption can cause the body to build up ketone bodies.
If ketone bodies build up, dehydration could result because the body’s pH falls and the levels are dangerously acidic to kidneys trying to get rid of acidic toxins in the body. There is also no evidence that protein makes muscles grow.
When taking creatine there is a potential risk of harm to the kidneys, liver or heart.
Creatine can also dehydrate people because it draws water from the rest of the body.
Another concern is that these products may lead to an irregular heartbeat, and if taken with caffeine, there is potential for a stroke.
Are these risks really worth your health? Instead of taking these unnatural substances, find natural foods that are high in protein such as cottage cheese, seed peanut butter and eggs.
People have no idea what they are putting into their bodies because these supplements are not approved by the FDA.
To stay healthy, make sure to research products carefully or just consume natural foods instead.
With natural foods, the harmful risks are not as high as with supplements.