AskDefine | Define whey

The Collaborative Dictionary

Whey \Whey\, n. [AS. hw[ae]g; cf. D. wei, hui, Fries. weye, LG. wey, waje. ] The serum, or watery part, of milk, separated from the more thick or coagulable part, esp. in the process of making cheese. Note: In this process, the thick part is called curd, and the thin part whey. [1913 Webster]

Word Net



1 the serum or watery part of milk that is separated from the curd in making cheese [syn: milk whey]
2 watery part of milk produced when raw milk sours and coagulates; "Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet eating some curds and whey"

Moby Thesaurus

beverage, blood, butter, buttermilk, certified milk, cheese, condensed milk, cream, dairy products, drink, fluid, fluid extract, fluid mechanics, ghee, half-and-half, heavy cream, hydraulics, hydrogeology, juice, latex, light cream, liquid, liquid extract, liquor, margarine, milk, nonfat dry milk, oleo, oleomargarine, raw milk, sap, semiliquid, skim milk, sour cream, water, whipping cream, yogurt



  • , /weɪ/, /weI/
Rhymes with: -eɪ



  1. The liquid remaining after milk has been curdled and strained in the process of making cheese.


liquid remaining after milk has been curdled
Whey or milk plasma is the liquid remaining after milk has been curdled and strained; it is a by-product of the manufacture of cheese or casein and has several commercial uses. Sweet whey is manufactured during the making of rennet types of hard cheese like cheddar or Swiss cheese. Acid whey (also known as sour whey) is obtained during the making of acid types of cheese such as cottage cheese.


Byproduct of cheese production; it is one of the components which separates from milk after curdling, when rennet (a byproduct of veal production, which are in turn fed often on whey) or an edible acidic substance is added.


Whey is used to produce ricotta and brown cheeses and many other products for human consumption. It is also an additive in many processed foods, including breads, crackers and commercial pastry, and in animal feed. Whey proteins primarily consist of α-lactalbumin and β-lactoglobulin. Depending on the method of manufacture, whey may also contain glycomacropeptides (GMP).
Whey protein (derived from whey) is often sold as a nutritional supplement. Such supplements are especially popular in the sport of bodybuilding. In Switzerland, where cheese production is an important industry, whey is used as the basis for a carbonated soft drink called Rivella.


Liquid whey contains lactose, vitamins, and minerals along with traces of fat. Researchers at Lund University in Sweden discovered that whey appears to stimulate insulin release. Writing in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, they also discovered that whey supplements can help regulate and reduce spikes in blood sugar levels among people with type 2 diabetes by increasing insulin secretion. However, like all products that result from the manufacture of cheese, whey can be a migraine trigger. The presence of whey in processed foods can be particularly surprising because it is commonly added to products that do not normally contain cheese derivatives when made at home.
Often commercial whey protein shakes are consumed post-workout by individuals who are trying to gain muscle mass. Whey digests very rapidly and thus the amino acids get into the blood stream faster than other protein sources. This fast acting protein is beneficial in the post work-out "anabolic window" (0-45 minutes after training) because the muscle tissue is most receptive to and nutrients in the blood. This is also the reason why carbohydrates are recommended post workout: to replenish stores and boost insulin release as well

Whey protein

Whey protein is the name for a collection of globular proteins that can be isolated from whey. It is typically a mixture of beta-lactoglobulin (~65%), alpha-lactalbumin (~25%), and serum albumin (~8%), which are soluble in their native forms, independent of pH. Whey has the highest Biological Value (BV) of any known protein. Whey protein has an even higher bioavailability than egg white protein, which is considered the "gold standard" of protein, and has a bioavailability rating of 100. Bioavailability refers to how quickly a substance will be digested and absorbed through the cilia in the small intestine and thus into the blood stream.
whey in Arabic: شرش اللبن
whey in Bulgarian: Суроватка
whey in Czech: Syrovátka
whey in German: Molke
whey in Estonian: Vadak
whey in Spanish: Suero de leche
whey in Esperanto: Selakto
whey in French: Lactosérum
whey in Icelandic: Mysa
whey in Italian: Siero di latte
whey in Luxembourgish: Wässeg
whey in Lithuanian: Išrūgos
whey in Dutch: Wei (melk)
whey in Dutch Low Saxon: Wui
whey in Japanese: 乳清
whey in Norwegian: Myse
whey in Polish: Serwatka
whey in Portuguese: Soro de leite
whey in Slovenian: Sirotka
whey in Serbian: Сурутка
whey in Finnish: Hera (maidon osa)
whey in Swedish: Vassle
whey in Chinese: 乳清
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