Are you an avid gym-goer, or better yet, someone willing to do whatever it takes to achieve peak physical health and fitness? Then chances are you know the importance of optimal nutrition, supplementation, and, more importantly, high-quality protein. Although whey is arguably the most popular type of protein powder in the fitness industry, its older sibling casein has plenty to offer as well.
As you might already know, milk is a protein-rich food, with casein accounting for approximately 80% of the protein content and whey comprising the remaining 20%. Casein protein powder typically comes in one of two forms:
- Micellar Casein
This is casein protein in its most natural form. It is slow to digest and absorb and is perhaps the most common casein protein powder.
- Casein Hydrolysate
This is casein protein partially broken down via hydrolysis to allow rapid digestion and absorption.
What Is Casein Protein Used For?
1. Muscle Building
Bodybuilders and athletes across different disciplines have supplemented their diets with casein protein for decades. Like most animal proteins, casein packs all the nine essential amino acids that the human body cannot produce naturally. But more importantly, casein contains high amounts of leucine – the amino acid that initiates muscle protein synthesis – and negligible amounts of fat and carbohydrates.
According to Legion Athletics, “every serving of Casein+ contains 26 grams of protein with little or no carbohydrate and fat.” In a study comparing subjects who consumed casein to a group that took whey and another that had no protein supplements, the researchers discovered that the casein subjects gained three times more muscle than the placebo group.
2. Fat Loss
Did you know that casein can help improve your metabolism? Research has proven that increased protein intake combined with resistance training and a calorie-controlled diet can help protect and add lean muscle mass while promoting fat loss.
A Dutch study discovered that by consuming two and half times more casein, their participants had higher basal metabolic rates – the amount of energy expended by the body at rest – and consequently better body fat composition. Moreover, the participants had a 33% increase in satiety levels. To put it simply, taking at least one scoop of Casein+ per day can improve your fat loss efforts without forcing you to stay hungry.
3. Strength Gains
If you were to perform a quick survey of most people’s workout goals, increased strength would most definitely rank high on the wish list. Most gym-goers consume whey protein to increase their muscle mass and strength, but if the findings of a Massachusetts study are anything to go by, then you might consider switching to casein.
According to the study, participants who took casein on average experienced double the strength gains in the legs, chest, and shoulders compared to those who consumed whey. The researchers attribute the significant strength difference to casein’s anti-catabolic properties, i.e. slow protein breakdown.
Like whey, casein is a protein derived from milk that can enhance muscle growth, aid fat loss, and result in strength gains. Casein is severely underrated due to its anti-catabolic traits, which in reality make it an excellent recovery supplement. Nevertheless, with all the research supporting its effectiveness, you can hardly go wrong trying it.
Ronald is a business editor who writes about various topics such as technology, health and finance. He works along with the colourful folks that build a nation through tech startups. He is also a professional football player and video games enthusiast.