The casein is an excellent protein of high biological value, we found all the essential amino acids. It has a slow digestion, thus helping to prevent loss of muscle mass.
Casein: What is it?
The casein is a protein found in cow ‘s milk. In it, we found around 3.5% of proteins, of that protein about 80% is casein and the other 20% is whey protein.
What is it for?
The casein is a slow protein absorption, ideal for use before bedtime, thus avoids catabolism at night and provide amino acids for muscle building and repair throughout the sleep period.
When casein reaches the stomach, it comes in contact with the stomach acid, forming a kind of gel. In this way, the absorption becomes slower and the release happens gradually.
What are its benefits?
The casein is found in milk and dairy products such as yoghurt and cheese, and for prescribing the correct dosage and consequent optimisation of the results should preferably be consumed under the supervision of a nutritionist.
The best casein for supplementation is micellar casein. Supplementation is indicated when the person does not consume the recommended daily amount of protein. In this case, it will compensate for this deficiency.
Another common use of casein supplementation occurs when the goal is to optimise the gain of muscle mass: in this situation it will provide amino acids before bed, avoiding the catabolism of lean mass during the night period.
In short, using it before bed is a great choice to increase muscle mass gain, increase satiety time and still prevent catabolism.
The casein has a high concentration of glutamine, about 20.5%. A much higher concentration when compared to whey protein, soy and egg. The glutamine present helps the muscle during intense training and during the phase of restrictive diets.
Another important benefit of casein is to aid in the regulation of the intestine. When it reaches the stomach it forms a kind of gel that reduces the speed of passage to the intestine.
Amino acids, peptides and whole proteins become better absorbed by the intestinal wall due to a longer contact time. The higher the protein absorption, the more the body will meet the daily needs of amino acids.
In addition, it is considered a stimulant for training. This happens due to the relationship between tyrosine and tryptophan: for every tryptophan molecule, we have 5 tyrosine. Tyrosine is the precursor amino acid of excitation neurotransmitters in the brain (giving us energy), while tryptophan is the amino acid responsible for relaxation.
The casein also has a very good level of amino acids glycogen s including threonine, glutamine and arginine. The amino acids glycogen donate to the production of glucose and energy during exercise and demonstrate a beneficial anti-catabolic effect in the muscle.
The proven benefits of casein are:
- Helps in muscle building
- Prevents catabolism
- Increase satiety
- It is a source of calcium
- Helps in weight loss
- Stimulates protein synthesis for longer
- It has slow absorption rate
In which foods do we find casein?
It is never too much to remember that supplements are targeted at those who do not have adequate nutrition or who have an above-average nutritional need, such as advanced physical activity practitioners or athletes.
Milk and its derivatives, such as cheese and yoghurt, are good sources of casein. Among the most diverse types of cheese, the one that most contains casein is cottage cheese. Milk and its derivatives are also good sources. Soy milk does not contain casein, it is found only in animal milk.
Casein x Lactose
First, we will understand the composition of the milk: the milk of several animals has a similar composition. More than 80% of animal milk is composed of water. The other substances are divided into smaller amounts. In the case of cow’s milk, 100 ml of milk contains 4.6% lactose, 2.7% casein (one of the main milk proteins), 0.6% whey protein, and other substances such as vitamins, Enzymes and minerals.
Is it possible for a lactose-free product to contain proteins? Yes, during the manufacturing process of lactose-free products an enzyme called lactase is added, this enzyme is responsible for reducing and even totally eliminating lactose from the food.
However, milk proteins are still present in the product. In short: casein is the milk protein, while lactose is the sugar in dairy products.
Allergy to milk protein vs. lactose intolerance
Milk allergy is more common than we imagine. When a person talks about having allergies to dairy products, in fact, they have an allergy to the protein present in these products. There are 3 main proteins of cow’s milk ( casein, β-lactoglobulin and α-lactalbumin).
It is a more common situation in children, especially in babies, rarely occur in adults. The symptoms of allergy are vomiting, cramps, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, constipation, the presence of blood in the stool, dermatitis (redness of the skin, peeling, small blisters and “coarse skin”), respiratory problems (asthma, And rhinitis) and weight loss.
They can occur in minutes, hours or days after the intake of cow’s milk or derivatives, in a persistent or repetitive way. The diagnosis is usually made by the physician through the observation of the symptoms, but the diagnosis is confirmed by the “trigger test”, which consists of the observation of withdrawal of cow’s milk and derivatives with the subsequent reintroduction of these foods.
In this case, much attention needs to be paid to processed foods, which may contain milk or derived ingredients (such as casein, caseinate, whey, or whey protein).
Attention should also be paid to replacing cow’s milk with another mammal (sheep, buffalo), as they may also cause allergic reactions and are not indicated for allergy to milk protein. The most indicated in this case is soy milk.
Lactose intolerance is the body’s difficulty in digesting and absorbing milk sugar (lactose which is the characteristic ingredient in animal milk and dairy products). It is more common in adults than in children.
With advancing age, there is a natural tendency to develop lactose intolerance. It develops as follows: on the mucosal surface of the small intestine, there are cells that produce, store and release a digestive enzyme (yeast) called lactase, responsible for the digestion of lactose. When it is poorly absorbed, it begins to be fermented by the intestinal flora generating diarrhoea, cramps, abdominal distension (stomach belly) and nausea.
Can lactose intolerants consume casein?
All supplements that are derived from milk may have some percentage of lactose in its composition since it is the natural sugar of this food. Protein formulations that are not 100% composed of protein count on some type of sugar to complement its composition.
Lactose intolerant can make use of casein provided it is pure. Some brands do not filter as much protein and may contain lactose.
Supplements based on casein
Know the types of casein present in supplements:
Casein Isolate and Concentrate
The casein is generally extracted from milk by a process that requires the use of a coagulant. This coagulant, usually known as chymosin, precipitates and coagulates casein. The part of the serum is then eliminated through a process called syneresis, the same process used in the manufacture of cheese, the goal is to make it as pure as possible.
The casein micellar is a special kind that concentrates the micellar portions of casein. Casein supplements are usually absorbed slowly, meaning they are the ideal supplements to take before bed, since we stay several hours without feeding.
However, the micellar form is considered to be even slower in regard to absorption and digestion, forming a kind of gel in the stomach, making it more difficult to break the molecule by the digestive enzymes, providing nutrition for even more hours. This type of protein takes about 6-8 hours to be digested.
Like whey protein, casein can also be hydrolyzed, with a focus on improving digestion, the hydrolyzed form is broken into even smaller peptides, so the hydrolyzed form is absorbed faster than the micellar form, but still Is slower than whey protein.
What is the difference between whey protein and casein?
The two proteins are most welcome for muscle growth and overall health improvement, however, each has its particularities that make them ideal for use at different times for best results.
The whey protein has a faster digestion, about 30 minutes, while the casein micellar is between 5 and 7 hours of absorption.
At the end of a training session, our body needs nutrients to replenish what has been expended and rebuild the injured muscle tissue, giving rise to hypertrophy. At this point the idea is to take whey protein, its absorption is faster, and can raise protein synthesis and provide the amino acids necessary for the reconstruction of muscles.
Already the casein micellar is most welcome before bed, about 40g to provide the body high and constant levels of amino acids, not allowing it to happen catabolism and also improves the body’s response to muscle building.
What are the best brands of casein?
100% Gold Standard Casein – Optimum
The casein Optimus provides 24g of protein for each meter of 32g, and 5g of BCAA, Glutamine is 4950mg per dose. The highlight of it is that it contains Aminogen®, a digestive enzyme that improves absorption. It is found in the flavours: vanilla, chocolate and cookies. Average price: $ 198,00.
Pro V60 from Labrada
This time-release protein from Labrada has in addition to casein in its composition, also whey protein concentrate and egg white protein (Albumin). Each 40g meter has 30g of protein. Flavours available: Vanilla, chocolate and strawberry. Average price: $ 359,00.
Elite Casein – Dymatize Nutrition
The casein of Dymatize contains a mix of proteins that includes micellar form, calcium caseinate and milk. In each 32g meter, it has 24g of protein and 10g of BCAA, s. It has in the flavours: Chocolate and Vanilla. Average price: $ 170,00.
Combat Powder – Muscle Pharm
The casein of Muscle Pharm blend contains time-release protein with the casein micelle, a protein from egg white (albumin) proteins and isolated, concentrated and partially hydrolyzed milk serum (whey). In each 35g meter has 25g of protein. Flavours available: Banana, vanilla, chocolate with peanuts, Triple Barry and cookies. Average price: $ 195,00.
100% Casein Protein – Probiotics
100% CASEIN PROTEIN ™ contains more than 70% of proteins with high PDCAAS (Protein Digestion Corrected Amino Acid Score) derived from Calcium Caseinate and Micellar Casein. It is a milk protein obtained by the microfiltration process, preserving important protein micelles. Flavours available: vanilla, chocolate and strawberry. Average price: $ 192,00.
Casein Body Size – IntegralMedica
Casein Body Size – Integralmédica is a 100% Micellar Casein supplement, a slow digestion protein enriched with Vitamins and Minerals. The portion with 29g of Proteínas.Sabores available: chocolate and vanilla. Average price: $ 199,00.
Before buying any casein supplement, it is important that the person or athlete seeks the guidance of a nutritionist, who will know how to fit the right amount and timing of each supplement and the real need to use them.
And you make use of casein? What are the results? Tell us about yourself!