Whey is the Way to Go

29 Nov

optimum-nutrition-casein-protein[1]When it comes to protein, athletes have lots of different options.  There’s protein from whole foods, like milk protein, egg protein, meat protein, and plant protein.  As a supplement, whey protein, casein protein, and soy protein are among the alternatives.

Additionally, research shows that different types of protein work better at different times of day (and night).

In the morning, whey protein from whole foods (milk, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.) or a whey protein powder shake can help control cravings all day, according to scientists at the Journal of Nutrition.

Whey is also a good choice for your pre- and post-workout protein because it is quickly and easily digestible.

Another option for your post-workout protein is casein.  Casein is the main protein found in milk and cheese.  Of the true proteins found in milk, about 80% is casein.  The other major protein in milk is whey.  Compared to whey, casein burns more slowly and provides a consistent flow of protein, over time (sort of like a “long-acting” protein).

There are several protein powder supplements that contain both whey and casein proteins (I know of at least one that also contains egg protein).

Studies also show that casein protein, when taken before bed, can increase muscle growth by about 20%.


Your thoughts?

3 Responses to “Whey is the Way to Go”

  1. garveyjrw at 6:16 PM #

    I have two questions: do you have an opinion on plant-based protein supplements e.g., quinoa/amaranth-based powders? I imagine they are not absorbed as readily as whey protein, but for people who prefer vegan options for ideological reasons I think it is a good option. Second (I will preface this by stating I do not have a strong opinion on the matter) what do you think of research cited in Forks Over Knives and elsewhere suggesting that casein protein has carcinogenic properties?

    • Brian Lebo at 11:39 PM #

      Thanks for your questions. First, plant based supplements are fine, so long as they are complete proteins (BCAAs). There is evidence that whey’s absorption is better, and that individuals should consume about 20-25% more plant-based protein, in grams, than they would if they were consuming whey protein. Second, although there is some anecdotal information attempting to link casein and cancer (in animals), there is no compelling evidence from epidemiological studies to indicate that normal levels of any kind of protein consumption is a risk factor for cancer. Your best bet… vary your protein consumption and don’t depend on any one source too heavily.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: