Whey-ing up the options: yesterday, today and tomorrow

Geoffrey W. Smithers. International Dairy Journal 48 (2015) 2e14   Link to publication


“Whey, first generated more than 5000 years ago, was valued in the 17th through early 19th centuries, notably as a medicinal agent against some common maladies. However, for much of history, whey has been considered a waste by-product of cheese, casein and yoghurt manufacture. Nowadays, the intrinsic value of whey components, notably the proteins, has been recognised, and a large and growing body of scientific evidence now supports the many physico-chemical, nutritional and biological properties of whey components. This evidence has established a foundation for their value as food and related ingredients. Manufacturing technologies have been, and continue to be, developed for processing whey and for isolating functional whey components in a cost-effective manner. A diverse and expanding range of whey ingredients, foods, and related products has resulted. This paper traces the history and science of whey, highlighting the quirks, struggles, accomplishments, and emerging opportunities and challenges in the field.”

Cheese whey: a potential resource to transform into bioprotein, functional/nutritional proteins and bioactive peptides

Yadav JSS et al. Biotechnology Advances 33 (2015) 756–774    Link to publication


“The byproduct of cheese-producing industries, cheese whey, is considered as an environmental pollutant due to its high BOD and COD concentrations. The high organic load of whey arises from the presence of residual milk nutrients. As demand for milk-derived products is increasing, it leads to increased production of whey, which poses a serious management problem. To overcome this problem, various technological approaches have been employed to convert whey into value-added products. These technological advancements have enhanced whey utilization and about 50% of the total produced whey is now transformed into value-added products such as whey powder, whey protein, whey permeate, bioethanol, biopolymers, hydrogen, methane, electricity bioprotein (single cell protein) and probiotics. Among various value-added products, the transformation of whey into proteinaceous products is attractive and demanding. The main important factor which is attractive for transformation of whey into proteinaceous products is the generally recognized as safe (GRAS) regulatory status of whey. Whey and whey permeate are biotransformed into proteinaceous feed and food-grade bioprotein/single cell protein through fermentation. On the other hand, whey can be directly processed to obtain whey protein concentrate, whey protein isolate, and individual whey proteins. Further, whey proteins are also transformed into bioactive peptides via enzymatic or fermentation processes. The proteinaceous products have applications as functional, nutritional and therapeutic commodities. Whey characteristics, and its transformation processes for proteinaceous products such as bioproteins, functional/nutritional protein and bioactive peptides are covered in this review.”

Functional food relevance of whey protein: a review of recent findings and scopes ahead

Patel S.  Journal of Functional Foods 19 (2015) 308–319    Link to publication


“The prospecting for nutrients has catapulted whey protein to the forefront of the functional food sector. This protein, filtered from cheese whey, has been characterized to contain a plethora of healthy components such as essential amino acids, bioactive peptides, antioxidants and immunomopotentiators. Consequently, whey protein has been validated to confer radical scavenging, anti-inflammatory, antitumour, immunostimulatory, hypotensive, gut homeostasis, antiobesity, antidiabetic, muscle biosynthesis, osteoprotective and radioprotective roles. As the multifarious benefits of whey protein cumulate amidst the dramatic rise in metabolic and degenerative health issues, it seems imperative to harness their potential. This review presents the significant biological aspects of whey protein and its derivatives. Further, it rationalizes their incorporation in functional foods.”

Milk nutritional composition and its role in human health

Pereira PC Nutrition. 2014 Jun;30(6):619-27. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2013.10.011. Epub 2013 Oct 30    Link to publication


“Dairy and milk consumption are frequently included as important elements in a healthy and balanced diet. It is the first food for mammals and provides all the necessary energy and nutrients to ensure proper growth and development, being crucial in respect to bone mass formation. However, several controversies arise from consumption of dairy and milk products during adulthood, especially because it refers to milk from other species. Despite these controversies, epidemiologic studies confirm the nutritional importance of milk in the human diet and reinforce the possible role of its consumption in preventing several chronic conditions like cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), some forms of cancer, obesity, and diabetes. Lactose malabsorption symptoms and cow milk protein allergy are generally considered to be the adverse reactions to milk consumption. The present article reviews the main aspects of milk nutritional composition and establishes several associations between its nutritious role, health promotion, and disease prevention.”