If you are a fitness enthusiast or athlete, you may have come across discussions around casein protein. But how well do you know this slow-digesting protein and its supplements? What are its nutritional benefits? If you’re interested in learning more about casein protein and are considering incorporating it into your fitness plan, it’s important you research all you can about it.
Protein powders are a manageable and less expensive way to increase your protein consumption if you want to boost your protein level. Most athletes and bodybuilders, in particular, turn to casein to help them build muscles and support recovery after a rigorous exercise session.
So, if you’re wondering if casein protein is for you, read this article to learn important facts about it and its benefits.
What is a Casein?
Casein is a common type of protein found in milk. About 80% of the protein in milk is made up of casein, with the remaining 20% being whey. So, chances are, you probably consume both protein types if you take any dairy products made from milk. Micellar casein and casein hydrolysate are the two ways you can consume casein in your diet.
Because it contains all nine essential amino acids, casein is considered a complete protein. The protein in casein protein powder is known for its ability to keep you fuller for longer, thanks to its abundant protein and slow absorption by the body. In addition, some people include casein protein powder in their diet to increase their body strength and muscle mass.
Other individuals choose to supplement their consumption of protein-rich whole meals with casein protein powder. However, it is important to consult your doctor or a fitness professional to determine the amount of casein your body may need for efficient energy production.
Nutritional Facts of Casein Protein.
Casein protein powder can have different nutritional profiles depending on your selected brand. The amount of calories, fat, carbohydrates, protein, iron, and calcium in a pack of casein protein powder all depends on the brand of the powder. However, a standard scoop containing 34 grams of casein powder should include the following:
- Calories: 100-120
- Fat: Less than 1gram
- Carbohydrate: 1-5gram
- Sodium: Varies depending on the brand.
- Protein: 25gram
- Sugar: Varies depending on the brand.
- Iron: 1.4gram
- Calcium: 650-700gram.
Benefits of Casein Protein
Casein has favorable effects on healing and muscle strength development. Casein is considered an acceptable protein to nourish the muscles long after a meal. Ideally, your muscles need extra protein for up to 24 hours after an exercise.
Protein aids in mending minor muscle tears that are brought on by exercise and helps your muscles grow back stronger than before. In addition, casein-specific amino acids, such as the BCAAs or branched-chain amino acids, can be great for reducing discomfort and hastening healing time.
Proteins are not all made equal. All types of protein—soy, egg, whey, animal, or casein—have particular benefits. As such, timing may be casein's strongest resource. Your bloodstream can get a slow, continuous supply of amino acids from casein for up to many hours.
Although it may take time for your muscles to develop, drinking a glass of casein-rich milk before bed is recommended because it may be more beneficial than any other night protein alternative.
Casein is a relatively reliable source of pure protein that is calorie-dense and has very little fat or carbohydrate content. Protein slows down digestion, prolonging the feeling of satiety in your body.
In addition, protein can improve satiety and aid calorie restriction, promoting fat loss while protecting muscles. Your metabolism may be higher if you have more muscle mass, helping you burn more calories and fat.
Strengthen the teeth and bones
Since casein is a milk protein, it also contains calcium and phosphorus - two minerals crucial for the health of our bones and teeth. Calcium is especially essential for our bones and teeth health as we age, and casein can provide this benefit without any additional sugar.
Source of protein when the body is at rest
Casein is a special way to nourish your muscles even as you sleep. This may benefit the body since most people don't get up in the middle of the night to eat to fuel their muscles.
It is important to remember that your body absorbs casein slowly even while you sleep, hence receiving a stable protein supply.
How To Use
Your body can consume casein protein any time of the day. So if your goal is to grow muscle and possibly weight, consider using casein protein before bed or as a meal replacement as a snack (in between regularly spaced-out meals).
Keep in mind that casein digests slowly, which means that casein may take longer than other types of protein to reach your muscles after an exercise.
Side effects and Risks involved in taking Casein Protein.
Since casein is the main protein in milk. As a result, persons allergic to or sensitive to milk are also likely to be allergic to casein. Thus, they should avoid taking it as a supplement.
In addition, casein may result in indigestion for people who have trouble digesting dairy products or large quantities of protein. This may cause stomach discomfort, but overall there is a low risk of side effects. Also, patients suffering from kidney and liver diseases are not advised to take this protein supplement because their bodies require a low protein level.
The body takes longer to absorb casein protein, making it a preferable source of protein among many fitness enthusiasts. It also has advantages for those who currently consume whey protein. So if you need to increase your protein intake, particularly between meals or overnight, casein may be the ideal supplement for your existing routine.
Although deciding to incorporate casein into your diet is up to you, ensure you consult your doctor or fitness expert before taking one. Also, check the nutritional value on the packaging before buying any casein protein powder brand to be sure it has all your body needs.
Written by: Sara Walker via Barbend.com