You won’t find a better diet aid than whey protein. It’s one of my staple recommendations to curb hunger and supercharge weight loss.
But whey has some other incredible health benefits too. Like its ability to lower blood pressure and improve arterial health.
And according to one recently published study, it can also help keep your blood sugar in check after meals.
Researchers randomly assigned 15 patients with type-2 diabetes to two groups. One received 50 grams of whey protein mixed with 8 ounces of water. The other got a placebo drink. Both groups followed their beverage with a breakfast of three pieces of jelly-slathered white toast. (Of course, this is probably the worst conceivable choice for a person with diabetes—which is exactly why these scientists chose it. They wanted a meal that would send the subjects’ blood sugar surging.)
The researchers collected blood samples 30 minutes prior to this “meal” and at various intervals afterward. And they found that subjects who drank a whey shake prior to eating experienced glucose spikes that were 28 percent lower than placebo-drinking controls.
Whey also boosted insulin response by a whopping 96 percent.
The bottom line: A simple whey protein shake is one of the wisest health investments you can make. I recommend finding one that has 8 grams of carbs or less per serving and mixing it with plain water. (You can add ice and put it in the blender for the full “milkshake” effect.)
“Incretin, insulinotropic and glucose-lowering effects of whey protein pre-load in type 2 diabetes: a randomised clinical trial.” Diabetologia. 2014 Sep;57(9):1807-11.