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It’s True: Whey Protein Improves Vascular Function (With Drew Price)

26th July 2022

26th July 2022

By Beth Shelper

Here at Innermost, our research and science-backed, nutrition-loving values mean that we get to work with some of the best brains in the nutrition game. Innermost ambassador Drew Price is a prime example of this, and if you’ve been around here for a while, you’ll definitely be familiar with Drew and his work.

Drew’s latest research into cardiovascular endurance, and the link between the cardiovascular system, vascular function and whey protein – which he co-authored with the head of The Nutrition Society and a host of other senior nutrition academics, demonstrates a clear relationship between whey protein consumption (such as The Strong Protein) and improved vascular function.

Great news! But how?

First, to get to the bottom of that, let’s first define what the cardiovascular system is, discuss cardiovascular endurance, and then we’ll get to the study. Sound good?

What is the vascular system and vascular function?

The vascular system (sometimes referred to as the circulatory system), refers to the vessels (ie the arteries, veins, capillaries and the heart), that carry blood throughout the body.

As you’re probably aware, the vascular system is vital to our health and survival, and is the primary carrier of not only blood, but as a result, the oxygen and nutrients that we need throughout the body.

What is vascular function?

With that in mind, vascular function is a key marker in cardiovascular health and with that, cardiovascular endurance - which measures just how well you can exercise, to what intensity, and for how long (amongst other important areas of health, of course).

Vascular function refers to the body’s ability to maintain normality, or ‘homeostasis’ in referral to the duties of the vascular system, that is – in pumping blood around the body. Make sense?

Now, due to the obvious importance of this function, scientists, researchers and nutritionists often research nutritional, behavioural and even psychological factors or values that have an impact on the vascular function, to determine how (and if) this can be improved, with risk factors reduced.

Now, that leads us on pretty nicely to Drew’s study into vascular function…

The effects of whey protein on vascular function

With the aim of investigating the nutritional and health impact of whey protein and vascular function and the reduction of cardiovascular disease, Drew and the team set out to review the evidence provided by a collection of studies and randomised trials. The investigations noted the impact of whey proteins and their peptides (aka, the strings of amino acids), which, as we know are the building blocks of protein. This was done to identify their relationship between vascular function and also any related health issues such as blood pressure, too.

The results: the link between why protein and vascular function

Analysing whey proteins and their impact on our nutrition and health is of particular interest due to their complexity, along with other dairy sources and foods. These high-quality proteins are one of the most popular included in protein supplementations (as well as examples such as casein), and is commonly associated with muscle gain, weight training and similar.

The investigation analysed studies into whey protein and their impact on vascular function, with many of the studies analysed showing both short and long term benefits in terms of vascular function and overall health, too. Of the eighteen studies analysed, significant results were noted, with those including an reduced body fat and a reduction in hypertension, with these results becoming more notable with an increase in exercise, too.


There we have it. The investigation, conducted by our very own Innermost ambassador Drew Price and his team: Kim Jackson, Julie Lovegrove and David Givens show that not only can whey protein supplementations such as The Strong Protein be beneficial in reaching your fitness goals and maximising your performance, but in lowering your risk of cardiovascular diseases and maintaining a healthy vascular function, too.

Good work, Drew!


  • Price, D., Jackson, K. G., Lovegrove, J. A., & Givens, D. I. (2022). The effects of whey proteins, their peptides and amino acids on vascular function. Nutrition Bulletin47(1), 9-26. Click here.

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