Whey Isolate Vs Whey Concentrate –  Which One Is Better

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Whey Isolate Vs Whey Concentrate -  Which One Is Better

Whey comes in more than one type of supplement powder, but whey concentrate and whey isolate are by far the two most popular forms of protein supplements.

In the sea of questions surrounding supplements, one of the constants is: “Whey Isolate Vs Whey Concentrate: Which One is Better?

Whey protein isolate is more packed with actual protein content and lower in fat, while whey protein concentrate is higher in fat and lower in protein grams. Though the concentrate tastes better than the isolate and is cheaper, it does not often have the best benefits for health and fitness between the two. 

Though it sounds like the whey isolate protein powder is better, there is a bit more to the issue than that. We’ll go over the ins and outs of whey isolate and whey concentrate and how they compare to one another in the article below.

The Pros and Cons of Whey Isolate

Let’s examine what makes whey protein isolate powder a contender in this battle-royal against whey protein concentrate, as well as some disadvantages to using this particular protein powder. If you’re looking 

Whey Isolate Pros

  • Fewer Fats – Whey Isolate has less fat content; in fact, it has cero grams of fat in its makeup. This means that it is less likely to pack on the pounds unnecessarily, and there is more room in the profile of the isolate for grams of protein.  
  • Less Lactose – Lactose is the sugar found in milk, and it is not added in as great a quantity to whey isolate. This is particularly great for those who can’t handle too much dairy, either because of a full-on allergy or an intolerance.
  • Fast Digestion – Whey Isolate has been known to digest at a much quicker rate than whey concentrate, meaning you’ll notice the energy and muscle-recovery effects rapidly whether you take it as a pre-workout or a post-workout.
  • Greater Protein Content – The protein content in whey isolate is greater than that of the whey concentrate. Whey Isolate has a total of 90% of protein, leading to greater benefits such as improved performance, recovery, and growth

Whey Isolate Cons

  • More Expensive – Because of it’s more intense processing, whey isolate is generally more expensive than the alternative whey protein powder.
  • Tastes More Bitter – Without the lactose sugar and even the fat content to dull the flavor, whey isolate does taste markedly more bitter than whey concentrate.

The Pros and Cons of Whey Concentrate

Now that Whey Protein Isolate has come out swinging, it’s time for Whey concentrate to have it’s turn: let’s examine the advantages and disadvantages of using this protein powder over the isolate version.

Whey Concentrate Pros

  • Improved Taste – Whey Concentrate has a much better taste than the alternative, and is often used in protein shakes, smoothies, and even in desserts because of the mild sweetness contributed by the lactose content.
  • Respectable Protein Content – Even though it can’t boast 90% protein content, it is important to remember that you’re still getting at least 70% protein in every scoop of whey concentrate powder.
  • Less Expensive Price – As mentioned above, whey concentrate often does not undergo such a time-sensitive processing when it is made, so it is usually less costly to the customer when put on the shelves.

Whey Concentrate Cons

  • Less Protein – As previously mentioned, though you’ll find a decent amount of protein in this protein powder, it just isn’t as full a profile as the whey isolate.
  • Digests Less Easily – Though this Protein powder digests well, it isn’t nearly as fast as the whey isolate thanks to having more of the fat content and lactose for your body to work through. This means it’ll be better for your gut health.

Conclusion: Which is Better, Whey Concentrate or Whey Isolate?

Now that we’ve looked at the pros and cons of each protein powder, let’s answer the question: in the battle of whey isolate vs. whey concentrate, which one is better?

Whey concentrate is made with higher levels of the sugar that comes from milk as well as fat content, leaving less room for actual grams of protein in the powder itself. However, this makes the taste of the protein powder markedly better, and the protein-lowered profile of ingredients contributes to the product being cheaper, too.

That said, whey isolate has higher levels of protein, offering more for the money spent. However, speaking of money, whey isolate protein is more expensive than whey concentrate. Besides that, the flavor of whey isolate is more bitter than the concentrate thanks to zero grams of fat and only 1 gram of carbs.

Altogether, if you’re looking for a protein powder that will give you more protein in every dose, boosting workouts without added carbs or fat, you’ll find that whey isolate is the best. It is more expensive and less universally beloved for its taste than whey concentrate, but it is the healthier option overall.

About the Author

Jared Levenson is a former binge eating wrestler turned Zen Buddhist Monk, Internal Family Systems counselor and nutrition wellness coach. He's helped hundreds of people through universal meal principles and internal family systems to make peace with food, stop binge eating, and find true health and wholeness.


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