Muscle Mass

Casein or Whey Protein - What to Take?

Anyone who grabs the gym to gain and strengthen their muscle mass and maintain fitness will surely know that to achieve good results can not fail to consume a nutrient: protein. It is essential for building, repairing and toning muscles, as well as being an ally for weight loss.

And even taking care of food and making sure you always include protein sources in the meal, such as meat, fish, dairy products or eggs, it is not always possible to obtain the amount of protein needed to achieve the goals you want with regard to the mass muscular. And it is precisely here that the need to supplement the amount of nutrient present in the body arises and that many practitioners decide to adhere to the use of supplements.

But which supplement to use? Take the example of two popular supplements made with protein, casein and whey protein. Is there a better one for all people or the choice of which one to take should be made taking into account aspects such as the body of each one or the goals that one wishes to achieve?

To answer this question and find out which is the best supplement to be taken, casein or whey protein, we will first know a little more about each of these substances.

What is casein?

Considered one of the highest quality protein sources available in the food supplement market, casein is the protein found in greater abundance in mammalian milk - is present in 80% of the composition of the substance - especially in cow's milk, and is rich in amino acids proteins that are not naturally produced by the body and need to be obtained through supplementation.

It is a slow absorption protein, that is, it causes the proteins to be supplied and available for a long period of time, the extent to which they are needed, and not a single turn.

Among the main [benefits provided by casein] are a lower rate of muscle loss, greater fat loss and increased strength. Not to mention that a British research has already identified that the use of this protein protects the teeth and that another study, conducted in Australia, concluded that it also collaborates in promoting the health of the colon.

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What is whey protein?

Whey protein is the protein extracted from whey during the process of processing milk into cheese. There are basically three types of whey protein: concentrate, which has 70 to 80% protein and the rest of carbohydrates and fats; alone, which has a content of 95% proteins; and hydrolyzed, in which protein chains break down into small pieces of peptides, causing the body to absorb them in a more fast.

Unlike casein, this faster absorption of protein causes the nutrients to available to the body at one time, which also causes a large increase in protein synthesis, which does not last long. time.

Some of the benefits offered by whey protein are fat loss, muscle preservation, increasing size and strength, reducing hunger and improving the immune system.

Casein or Whey Protein?

Well, now that you've gotten to know a bit more about both types of sports supplements and their benefits, it is time to compare them and decide whether casein or whey protein is the best alternative for you.

Considering that while casein works best in relation to an equilibrium of the quantity of proteins in the organism and the whey protein leaves the production of proteins, the answer to our question varies according to when the done.

For example, in the case of casein, ideally it should be taken during a rest period when the muscles are repaired. By consuming it in place of a meal or before bedtime, the user undergoes a steady increase in amino acid production that lasts for approximately seven hours.

Even though its absorption process is slower and does not cause a growth of protein synthesis as high as whey casein results in a lower waste of protein produced and maintenance of the time.

On the other hand, when it comes to the immediate period after the end of a training, casein is no longer the best option. This is because it does not offer instant benefits over muscle repair and can cause indigestion.

It is precisely for this reason that whey protein presents itself as a great alternative. It is that soon after its digestion, which happens quickly, the supplement causes a rapid growth in protein production, which lasts from 60 to 90 minutes. This peak is short and after two to three hours can no longer be observed.

Thinking about the post-workout period, this rapid effect is important for immediate repair of the muscles, which have had their fibers broken and need the proteins to be recomposed.

Casein and whey protein

Starting from the idea that we have just presented, which shows how each supplement is the best alternative for each situation, we can come to the conclusion that instead of opting for casein or whey protein, the practitioner can choose to use both types of supplement.

It is because the combination of the two at different times - post-workout and rest period - will bring both a production of proteins as a further maintenance of these proteins, after the peak of nutrient synthesis has past.

Proof of this was a survey of men who were not in the habit of working out and underwent a 10-week training program. While part of the group received 40 g of carbohydrates, the remainder consumed 40 g of a combination of casein and whey protein. The result was that participants who used the combined protein recorded a growth in lean muscle mass, thigh muscles and muscle strength.

Another similar study was carried out and showed similar results. In this experiment, men unaccustomed to training participated in a 14-week training program. They were also divided into two groups, in which one received 25 g of carbohydrates and the other 25 g of a mixture of casein and whey protein. At the end of the experiment, it was observed that men who had consumed the combined protein had a larger increase in the size of their muscle fibers than the others.

According to the rate of absorption of casein and whey protein, what many people do is to use casein before bed and at breakfast, and use whey protein just after workout or 30-60 minutes before workout (and after work out too). This usage strategy makes a lot of sense, leaving whey protein for the hours you need to assimilate faster.

Remember that casein can be very expensive. So, you may prefer to opt for whey protein yourself and add milk to the meal to slightly slow down the absorption rate.


Do you have the custom of using casein or whey protein supplementation, or even the two at different times? How do you organize it? Comment below.

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