Casein is known as the slow protein, and for good reason. In the introductory article to the casein protein series, we discussed how casein protein consumption causes amino acid levels in the blood to increase for seven hours; more than double the time of whey protein. This would make casein a great choice for a night time meal, but, what does the research say about casein's post-workout potential?
Casein is commonly referred to as the slow or nighttime protein because of its relatively slow digestion time compared to other options. It's perhaps the second most popular protein after the king: whey. If whey protein is the most popular, is casein good for anything?
Soy protein doesn't have a great reputation in the performance world. Unfortunately, there is not a great deal of research specifically looking at soy protein to enhance recovery. However, there is some to suggest the isoflavones and saponins found in soy protein have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties, giving it great potential to enhance recovery.
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Diets rich in protein increase thermogenesis, spare muscle protein, and improve glycemic control. Consuming protein before or after exercise also increases protein synthesis1. Put together, these benefits have the potential to improve body composition. Let's take a look at whether or not soy protein has a role to play in increasing muscle mass and decreasing body fat.
The process of making whey protein creates three main products: concentrate, isolate, and hydrolysate (or hydrolyzed whey). The main difference between the three is protein content, the protein's amino acid length, and cost. Does this added cost lead to additional benefits?
Whey protein is a byproduct of cheese production. Milk is made up of two proteins: whey and casein. To make cheese, the proteins are separated. The protein powder we take after a workout starts its journey as a thin, watery liquid. This liquid is processed, and eventually turns into the powder we all love. The amount of processing dictates its final form.
Over the years, whey has become the goto protein for athletes, dieters, and fitness enthusiasts. This series will focus on whey and its ability to deliver on a assortment of claims. We'll discuss whether whey helps with performance, weight loss, muscle building, recovery, and more!