Whey for Osteopenia and Osteporosis

Why should I consider using Whey for Osteopenia or Osteoporosis? One of the newer areas of research in the scientific community is the effect of lactoferrin on bone growth. This research has been led by scientists in New Zealand and it shows real promise for those interested in promoting bone growth.

As a result of these university studies, some people are considering using lactoferrin in their general bone growth plan. Some ask, " Why not just drink milk?"

This is a good question. As noted above lactoferrin is a protein. Milk has two main sources of protein: cassein and whey. It is the latter that contains lactoferrin. And so you can get more concentrated form of lactoferrin by consuming whey than if you drink whole milk. You would need to consume so much milk to get the same amount of lactoferrin! (This is one of the reasons why body builders use the concentrate instead of drinking milk.)

What should I look for in a commercial product? Current technological processing includes ultrafiltration, microfiltration, reverse osmosis, and ion-exchange. This has resulted in a number of different commercial products:

Protein concentrates (ranging from 80-95 percent protein)
Reduced lactose
Protein isolate
Demineralized
Hydrolyzed

Most of the time you will find these products in the body building section of your health food stores - since body builders are particularly interested in forms of concentrated protein.

It is unlikely that you will find them in the same section as calcium or other bone building substances. In fact, some of the staff in your local health food store may not know the research concerning lactoferrin and bone growth (It is that new!) This article puts you 'ahead of the game' in building a program of natural ways to increase your bone density.

Note that each commercial product differs in the amount of protein, carbohydrates, immunoglobulins, lactose, minerals, and fat it contains. Also there may be different concentration of lactoferrin. So, do take time to read labels on all the products offered. Remember you are not consuming this for the same purposes as a body builder. You are looking for a particual substance, lactoferin, which will help you increase your bone density.

Are there negatives to consuming it? If you are buying a commercially prepared product and planning to use it for health purposes, you want to be sure that it comes from cows that meet the highest health standards.

Many persons look for products derived from cows raised with no antibiotics and pastured (fed) organic grass.

With the emergence of mad cow disease, many also check the country of origin to make sure the product they are buying does not come from cows raised in countries where there is a history of the disease.

Read more about Lactoferrin and Whey or read the research abstracts about Lactoferrin research abstracts