Are There Any Negative Effects from Protein Supplements?

So, you’ve started a new workout regimen and are kicking your health into high gear. You’re drinking more water, eating more vegetables, and hitting the weights almost every day of the week.

In order to build muscle, you’re going to need one key building block of health: protein. To get as much protein as possible in our diets, many of us turn to things like protein supplements to help us bulk up faster.

But could that trusted protein supplement be causing you any negative health effects? Let’s take a look and see if there are any negative effects of protein supplements.

What Are Protein Supplements?

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, let’s first cover what we’re talking about when we say “protein supplements.”

Protein supplements are products that are added to an athlete’s diet to reach a high protein goal. When people are unable to get enough protein from the foods they eat, sometimes they need to add a supplemental form of protein to their intake.

The most common forms of protein supplement on the market today are protein powders, protein bars, and protein shakes.

There’s Limited Data on Long Term Effects of Protein Supplements

Before we talk about the possible negative effects of protein supplements, it should be noted that there is limited data available. Protein powder as we know it today is relatively new on the market, and any long-term effects these supplements could have on health have not yet been studied.

That being said, many still have concerns about just how healthy protein supplements are. We need to see if there are any hidden dangers lurking in that jar of protein powder sitting on your kitchen counter.

Complications of Protein Supplements

There are few complications or negative effects associated with protein supplements and some of them are still just hypothetical.

Here are some of the negative effects that people are concerned about and just how serious they are.

Kidney Problems

So is protein bad for kidneys?

Not really, no. In people with kidney disease, too much protein can worsen the severity of kidney damage. In healthy adults with healthy kidneys, however, a high protein intake is good for you. Lowering your protein intake if your kidneys are healthy could have adverse health effects.

Digestive Sensitivities

A common source of protein in many protein supplements is whey. Whey is a by-product of the cheesemaking process used in dairy cheese.

Since many people suffer from milk allergies and lactose intolerance, many of these protein supplements can cause digestive complications in these people.

Some people may also find some of the other ingredients found in protein supplements difficult to digest, but this is on a case-by-case basis and not a good indicator of a widespread negative effect.

Some of Them Are High in Calories

If you’re watching your calories, you should take a minute to look over the nutrition info on that protein bar.

Some protein supplements can be surprisingly high in calories. Protein is naturally a high-calorie food. This is ideal for those of us looking to bulk up, but if you’re trying to tone and slim down, you may want to double-check the calorie count.

Overall, Protein Supplements Are Good for You

When looking over the possible negative effects that you could get from your protein supplements, the results are pretty clear: protein supplements are completely safe and healthy for people with healthy kidneys and systems.

If you’re worried that you could be experiencing some negative side effects from your newly-started protein supplement regimen, discontinue use and give your doctor a call.