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WHEY vs. SOY. Marissa Gruber Rossana Ruvalcaba Kayla VanderKam Taran Lent & Marie Kirsch. What’s the Difference?. Whey Protein. Soy Protein. Whey is a component of cow's milk that is isolated in the standard cheese-making process.

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whey vs soy

Marissa Gruber

Rossana Ruvalcaba

Kayla VanderKam

Taran Lent &

Marie Kirsch

what s the difference
What’s the Difference?

Whey Protein

Soy Protein

  • Whey is a component of cow's milk that is isolated in the standard cheese-making process.
  • Soy protein comes from soybeans-a plant source
which one is better
Which One Is Better?
  • Studies are trying to determine which one is really more beneficial when it comes to weight loss .
  • Both claim to be better than the other
  • The 5 journals were studies on overweight people

“Whey Protein but Not Soy Protein Supplementation Alters Body Weight and Composition in Free-Living Overweight and Obese Adults”David J. Baer, Kim S. Stote, David R. Paul, G. Keith Harris, William V. Rumpler, and Beverly A. Clevidence


Double-Blind, Randomized Clinical Trial

  • The objective was to determine the effect of consumption of supplemental whey protein, soy protein, and an isoenergetic amount of CHO on body weight and composition in free-living overweight and obese but otherwise healthy participants

They used 90 overweight and obese participants.

  • Each person was randomly assigned to one of three groups:
          • Group 1 was given Whey Protein
          • Group 2 was given Soy Protein
          • Group 3 was given isogeneric amounts of CHO
  • The study lasted 23 weeks.

Each supplement provided ~56 g/d of Protein.

  • Each participant consumed a beverage twice a day containing 1670 kJ/d.
  • Body weight and composition data were obtained monthly.
  • Dietary intake was determined using 24 hour recalls that were collected every 10 days.
the results
The Results
  • After 23 weeks:
      • body weight of the WP participants were lower by 1.8kg, than the group consuming CHO
      • Lean body mass did not differ but waist circumference was smaller in participants consuming the WP than the other two groups
after 6 months
After 6 Months:
  • There was a significant difference in body weight and fat mass between over weight and obese adults who consumed supplemental WP compared with those who consumed isoenergetic CHO.
  • The difference in body weight was associated with a decrease in fat without an effect on lean mass.
The experiment has low reliability and validity due to the fact that the subjects were only followed for 23 weeks with some continuing through a full 6 months

Without controlling the subjects diets and only supplementing protein into their diets twice a day, it would take much longer than 6 months to see real effects


“Weight loss without losing muscle mass in pre-obese and obese subjects induced by a high-soy-protein diet”P Deibert, D König, A Schmidt-Trucksaess1, K S Zaenker, I Frey, U Landmannand A Berg1

  • Randomized, controlled study
  • Started with 90 participants
  • BMI’s of between 27.5 and 35
  • Estimate the efficacy of a high soy protein and low fat diet in weight lose but no muscle mass loss
three groups
Three Groups:
  • Lifestyle education group.
  • -3 teaching session twice a month
  • -They were given nutritional counseling a moderate fat, balanced diet
  • Substitution diet group
  • -Given two soy-yoghurt-honey replacements for their food for the first 6 weeks
  • Substitution diet with physical activity group
  • -Same diet of the substitution diet group
  • -60 minute physical activity twice a week


  • At the end only 83 people completed the study
  • 6 months
  • The BMI dropped for all three groups
  • Lifestyle education group lost least weight than the other two groups
  • High soy protein and low fat diet lost more weight than just following a conventional diet
  • All 3 groups kept their muscle mass
critical review
Critical Review
  • German authors for a university
  • How much soy protein is needed to actually achieve weight loss
  • Not enough people
  • Male/ female?

“Comparison of the effects of cows’ milk, fortified soy milk, and calcium supplement on weight and fat loss in premenopausal overweight and obese women”ShFaghih, A.R. Abadi, M. Hedayati, S.M. Kimiagar

  • 100 women
  • 20-50 years old
  • Overweight or obese
  • 25-40 BMI
the groups all were asked to consume 500 fewer kcals day
The Groups:All were asked to consume 500 fewer kcals/day
  • Control group
  • Supplement group:
    • 800mg/day calcium carbonate
  • Milk group:
    • 3 servings of low-fat milk per day
  • Soy group:
      • 3 servings of calcium fortified soy per day
after 8 weeks
After 8 weeks …

85 women finished

Weight, BMI, waist circumference, and hip circumference were re-measured

“The greatest changes were seen in the high dairy group in all variables.” [3]


Critical Review

  • This study was non-bias and there was no conflict of interest.
  • Problem: 8 weeks was too short!
  • Longer studies have shown some conflicting results.

“A whey-protein supplement increases fat loss and spares lean muscle in obese subjects: a randomized human clinical study”By: Joy L Frestedt, John L Zenk, Michael A Kuskowski, Loren S Ward and Eric D Bastian


The Study

  • Objective: test the effects of a whey supplement on weight loss
  • Randomized, double blind, 12-week study
  • 158 obese subjects
  • Independent variable: the consumption of the whey supplement
  • Dependent variable: weight loss, body fat loss, and lean muscle mass retention
  • Whey supplement group lost more body fat and retained more lean muscle mass
critical review1

Funded by Gianbia Nutritionals Inc.

  • Use of completers vs. responders data
Critical Review

“Acute effects of whey protein isolate on cardiovascular risk factors in overweight, post-menopausal women”Sebely Pal, Vanessa Ellis, Suleen Ho

  • overweight and obese post-menopausal women are highly susceptible to cardiovascular diseaseinvestigate the acute effects of dietary whey proteins on lipids
  • glucose and insulin
  • three-way crossover design
  • 21 overweight or obese, post-menopausal women
  • randomized
  • consume either 45 grams sodium caseinate or 45 grams of a glucose control with a breakfast meal

The Results

  • No significant change between groups in postprandial incremental area under the curve for: total cholesterol low density lipoprotein,high density lipoprotein, non-esterified fatty acids, Apo B48, insulin
      • leptin
  • There was a significant decrease in the appearance of triglycerides in the blood by 21% and 27% after consuming the whey meal compared to control and casein meals
  • It can be suggested that a single dose of whey protein can decrease arterial exposure to smaller triglyceride-enriched lipoprotein particles compared to the glucose and casein
critical review2
Critical Review

Whey protein has beneficial effects

Effective supplement that can help lower the triglycerides in the body which consequently lowers the chances of postprandial lipidemia

  • 1 invalid study concerning the whey protein supplement
  • The short duration of time spent on the research
  • Longer trials were necessary
  • More control over what the subjects were or were not eating
  • Whey protein was seen in an overall positive light
  • Soy- not as good as whey