Anyone who’s been to the gym has heard about whey protein; a mixture of globular proteins that has been isolated from the liquid by-product that is created during the formation of cheese. It’s used quite popularly as a dietary supplement that provides users with the nutrients that they need to develop muscle mass since the amount of readily absorbable proteins in this substance are far greater than the amount of carbs. You can buy whey protein from any dietary store in bulk and simply start drinking it, but many people ask does whey protein expire or not?
Every whey protein manufacturer sells their product in bulk, and every whey protein container comes with an expiry date after which you are advised not to use the product. However this doesn’t mean that you can’t use the supplement any further, food items start degrading once bacteria and other microbes start to grow in it, but for microbes to grow and thrive there needs to be an ample amount of moisture in their environment. Whey protein exists in powdered form and has no moisture in it at all, so it simply cannot provide microbes with a comfortable environment.
As long as you store your whey protein supplement in a dry place, then it should be able to last for an additional 6 to 16 months after its expiry date has been passed. Whey protein takes significantly longer than other foods to degrade so consuming it past its expiry date shouldn’t be bad for your health. However, that doesn’t mean that the supplement will also keep its effectiveness intact. Over time the protein and sugar in whey protein supplements start reacting together, resulting in an essential amino acid called lysine, breaking down. Once a supplement loses its lysine, then it can no longer function as a complete source of protein.
This reaction between protein and sugar is unavoidable and is known as Malliard Browning, and there’s no fixed time frame in which this reaction starts taking place. Some protein supplements start to lose lysine a lot faster than others, and the only way to tell whether your supplement is a victim of Malliard Browning or not is to taste it. Just take a bit of your supplement and place it on your tongue, if its taste is fading or non-existent then that means your protein supplement is no longer usable, consuming it won’t harm you, but it also won’t help you in any way.
Not many people have to deal with expiring protein powder since whey protein supplements have really long lives and most of us finish them before they reach their expiry date, but if anyone has a jar of protein lying around their house for a while now then before just throwing it away it’s better to give it a taste. Chances are that it might still be usable, helping you save a bit of your money.
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