One of the most commonly asked questions we get at True is ‘what’s the difference between whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate?’ While the differences are subtle in terms of protein content and health benefits, there are a few things to consider before deciding which product is right for you.
What is whey protein and how is it made?
Whey is one of two protein compounds found in cow’s milk – the other being casein. To make a protein powder, first, the whey must be separated from the casein. This is achieved by adding special enzymes to heated milk, causing the casein in the milk to coagulate and form curds. Once the liquid whey has been separated from the curds it goes through a filtration process to strip it of much of its fat and lactose content. It is micro-filtrated to become WPC 80 and goes through a further ultrafiltration process to make WPI 90. These filtered liquids are then evaporated and dried to become pure protein powders, which is how they arrive at True Protein HQ, where we blend them with all-natural flavours.
The raw protein is a neutral-tasting powder that is composed almost entirely of protein compounds. It is rich in nutrients and contains all nine essential amino acids, which are renowned for their ability to trigger muscle protein synthesis and protect muscles from breakdown, as well as being critical to our overall health.
WPC 80 vs WPI 90
Unlike WPC, WPI undergoes an extra step of filtration that strips away almost all of the fat and lactose content. While both WPI and WPC are rich in protein and amino acids, WPI is left with a higher concentration of protein (WPI is 90% whilst WPC is 80%). This makes it one of the purest sources of protein available, as there is little room for other components like fats and carbohydrates.
As WPI has gone through a further ultrafiltration process, it contains less fat, carbohydrates and lactose than WPC. The minimal traces of lactose in whey protein isolate make it easier on the stomach, providing a more suitable option for those who are sensitive to or mildly intolerant of dairy products.
Both formulas are ‘bioavailable’, which means they are easily absorbed by the body to produce better results. However, in general terms, WPI can be digested and utilised by the body faster than WPC due to its minimal lactose content. This can vary from person to person and usually depends on how well someone tolerates dairy.
True WPI 90 and WPC 80 are available in a wide range of delicious natural flavours – there’s something to suit every taste! Our protein powders are naturally sweetened with stevia and flavoured with only the best all-natural ingredients sourced from around the globe, from real vanilla beans and raw organic cacao to manuka honey and freeze-dried fruits. All of True’s products are filtered to have superior solubility resulting in the smoothest, tastiest shakes with only genuine health benefits.
In terms of difference in taste, you will find WPC produces a creamier, frothier shake due to its higher dairy content. WPI, on the other hand, produces a thinner consistency and is less creamy though still full-bodied in flavour. We recommend adding approx. 150-200ml cold water or milk of your choice to your shaker before adding one scoop of powder. Shake liberally for 10-20 seconds before enjoying.
Due to the extra step in production and higher protein content, WPI costs slightly more to purchase. This makes WPC a more economic option for those on a tighter budget or gym enthusiasts who are simply looking for a good ‘all-rounder’ protein. WPI is the premium choice for gym-goers and athletes seeking rapid absorption for an enhanced post-workout recovery.
|WPC 80||WPI 90|
|Lowest in Fats and Carbohydrates||✘||✔|
|Suitable for Lactose Intolerances||✘||✔|
New Zealand Whey
True is committed to offering only the best quality ingredients in our products. Our entire range is 100% natural and has been created with premium raw ingredients sourced from across the globe to ensure the best quality, flavour and health benefits possible, without compromise.
Our entire range of whey-based protein powders are derived from the milk of New Zealand dairy cows. We have chosen to source from New Zealand because of the country’s strict regulations on agriculture. All farmers are upheld to a high standard of practice that forbids the use of any hormones or antibiotics and ensures the cows are farmed naturally and healthily.
The dairy cows we source from are grass-fed and free range, meaning they consume a diet rich in vitamins and nutrients. Happy, healthy cows grazing on this lush green grass produce the best quality milk, which results in a high-quality whey protein powder.
Which whey protein is right for me?
In summary, the differences between whey protein concentrate and whey protein isolate are fairly subtle. The main disparity is the trace amount of lactose and fat in WPI and the contrasting creamier taste of WPC.
For an everyday gym enthusiast, WPC is a perfectly suitable product to help achieve weight loss goals, assist in toning and meeting your daily protein intake. WPI may be more advantageous for those who train more seriously/frequently or are looking to gain lean muscle mass, due to its fast absorption and high protein content.
We understand that purchasing a large bag of protein can be a big commitment, especially if you’re new to the product. The good news is we understand and have created sample packs of our most popular product ranges including WPI 90 and WPC 80. With 14 sachets and 12 tasty flavours to try, find your favourite before buying a full-size bag.
True also offers individual samples of WPI 90 and WPC 80 to assist you in deciding which whey product is best for you, in case you’ve already narrowed down the flavours you want to try. Try them both to compare the two, taking note of consistency, mixability and how it makes you feel after you drink it.
What is the difference in ingredients between WPC 80 and WPI 90?
At True, we pride ourselves on having completely transparent ingredient lists and nutrition panels on every single product. On the packaging of WPC 80 and WPI 90, you will find the ingredients list is fairly minimal, and most importantly, free from any unreadable elements. We strive to feature non-GMO, organic ingredients across all supplements wherever possible. The end result is a great tasting, easily digested product with no bad aftertaste.
Which product will help me build muscle?
The use of supplements to build muscle mass has been widely studied across the globe, with results showing protein powder does, in fact, optimise muscle mass in conjunction with regular exercise and a healthy balanced diet. This is made possible thanks to the complete amino acid profile, including BCAAs – a group of three essential amino acids unable to be produced by the body, so must be obtained from food and supplements, of these products. Amino acids are quite literally the building blocks of protein and are critical in the synthesis and repair of muscles.
One of the best ways to build lean muscle mass is to create a moderate energy surplus (consuming more energy than your body is spending). A serving of WPC or WPI can help to increase your energy intake and assist in post-workout recovery by helping to repair muscles.
Combining an even spread of protein throughout your day with a regular exercise routine is the best way to maximise results and optimise muscle growth.
Which product will help me lose weight?
As protein keeps you fuller for longer, it can be a tool used to aid you in preventing overeating. When eaten in moderate amounts across the day, you are kept feeling satiated. This will also keep your insulin levels consistent and prevent spikes that leave you feeling excessively hungry and craving sugar.
It is important to eat without consuming too many empty calories (i.e. junk, fried and sugary foods) to limit fat gain. Both WPI 90 and WPC 80 are perfect for satisfying appetite and making sure the calories you eat are working to better your health. Combine a well-rounded diet with a regular exercise routine and you are sure to be on the way to achieving your goals.
Which product is better for cooking?
Both WPC and WPI are suitable for adding to smoothies, baked goods, protein balls and so on. While they both pack a punch of protein, they perform slightly differently when used in kitchen creations. Due to its higher lactose content, WPC will produce a more viscous texture and a creamier taste.
Which formula is healthier?
Neither formula is necessarily ‘healthier’ than the other. The fact that WPC is slightly higher in fat, lactose and carbohydrates can actually be beneficial as it retains a higher vitamin and mineral concentrate. On the other hand, WPI can make a better option for those who are trying to reduce their calorie intake.
There are great heath benefits to be discovered in both formulas!
Which product is safest for me?
Generally speaking, there is little to no evidence suggesting that whey protein isolate or concentrate is unsafe to consume in moderate doses. Like anything, always read the packaging and stick to recommended doses. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or on medication, always consult your doctor before taking any supplements.