What Is the Best Time to Take Casein Proteins?

Author: Nicole Adler   Date Posted: 15 September 2016 

To get the most benefit out of casein proteins, it is essential to know how this protein works inside and out. Various proteins work in different ways, which could affect the benefits it gives you. Let us take a closer look at casein proteins now and find out how they should be taken to get the most out of them.

What Is Casein Protein Really?

Casein protein is quite similar to another famous protein, whey, because both are obtained from dairy sources such as cow’s milk. Almost 80% of the protein composition of milk is casein, with whey being the remaining 20%. The protein is also not soluble; this means that casein is the solid protein inside milk.

The protein casein is not only used as a supplement by fitness fanatics, it is also used as a binding gel, filler and is an essential component during the cheese making process. However, casein used in each of these products is made in a very specific way.

What Makes Casein Proteins Stand Out?

Casein proteins are quite special because of their ability to gel with other substances and each other. When you consume a casein protein supplement, the casein will enter the stomach as a gel. Because of this gel, digestion of this type of supplement is considerably slower, which enables the release of a slower yet steadier supply of amino acids.

The slower metabolization rate of casein does make the protein supplement less suitable for use after before, during or after training, considering it takes longer for the proteins to be absorbed by the body. That being said, the slower digestion rate does provide other benefits, such as the perfect alternative solution for people with a faster metabolism, or a protein supplement for those who want to increase their metabolic rate during the night.

To really understand why casein proteins are better taken at mealtimes or bedtimes, we need to look at how proteins are used when they enter the body and how it relates to a slower digestion rate. The slower digestion rate of casein has the ability to reduce the breakdown of protein, but also the oxidation of amino acids. In addition to that, it also makes you feel fuller longer, which could be beneficial for those trying to lose weight with the help of an additional casein supplement.

Is Whey Better than Casein Because It Is Faster?

This is a common misconception amongst those who are just starting out with supplements. No protein supplement is better than another, because each of them has a specific use. Even though whey is faster absorbing and more suited after your training, casein cannot be underestimated since it is able to reduce the anabolic response due to the slow release of amino acids.

To get the most benefit from your supplement, many experts recommend using a combination of whey and casein. Naturally, these two supplements cannot be taken at the same time, because casein would slow down the absorbing rate of whey protein due to its gelling abilities. Whey can be taken after your training, but casein should only be taken at least two hours after you have consumed your whey protein.

How Should I Take Casein?

The information above might seem a little confusion, so let us break it down for you some more. In short, casein is a great supplement if you have trouble meeting your daily protein intake. It could also be an alternative for athletes that have difficulties digestion other sources of protein such as whey and egg.

Due to the slow release properties of casein protein, the supplement is best taken when you expect to go without food for a long period of time, since casein has the ability to provide your body with the right nutrients during this time.

There are numerous athletes who take casein on a regular basis, but use it before bedtime, simply because it reduces a process called catabolism. Catabolism is a process where muscle is broken down, often during a sustained period of time where the body does not get the protein it needs, for example while you are sleeping.

The amount of casein protein you need will also depend on other denominators, which includes your weight and your daily protein intake through food. Athletes also need to take a look at their activity levels, because doing strenuous exercise on a daily basis might mean you need more protein than the average person.

When you are considering taking casein protein for the first time, it is essential that you are careful. Not everyone is able to tolerate casein, and some people are even allergic. Side-effects that may indicate an allergy are symptoms such as stomach pains, diarrhea, vomiting and other digestion related problems.

The dose of casein you are taking is also important, because a dose that is too high could also lead to similar problems athletes with casein allergies experience. Casein can have a bloating effect, so be careful when you decide on a dose to take.

How Do I Find the Right Casein Supplement?

Before you buy any supplement online, it is essential to have all the information you need displayed on the product description page of the manufacturer. Nutrients Direct displays a lab analysis of their supplements, as well as a nutritional overview of all the ingredients inside the supplement. Because of this information being available, athletes can make an informed decision and avoid purchasing a supplement that simply does not work for them.

To discover the casein protein supplements at Nutrients Direct, please head over to our protein section and choose casein protein from the dropdown menu. By doing so, you will get an overview of suitable casein supplement. At the top of each product page, you will also find icons with fitness goals, which will tell you quickly if a supplement will give you the desired results.

Data based on vanilla flavour ND Total Whey WPC ND Mass Muscle WPI Calcium Caseinate
Protein per serve (g) 22.2 23 26.2 26.7 28.1
Take For
Type of protein/s Whey Whey Whey & Casein Whey Casein
Carbs per serve (g) 3.4 4.2 26.5 1.9 0.8
Fat total per serve (g) 1.3 1.3 1.6 0.6 0.2
Sugars per serve (g) 3.2 3.2 10.4 1.4 0.3
Serving Size (g) 35 30 60 30 30
Serves per kilo 28 33 16 33 33
Additional Premium Ingredients Amino blend, colostrum, creatine, glutamine   Amino blend, carb blend,colostrum, creatine    
Notes Complete muscle-building formula The least processed budget powder Ultimate Post workout bulking powder Fast absorbing powder Slow release high density powder
Flavours Chocolate Vanilla Chocolate, Vanilla, Honeycomb, Strawberry, Banana, Natural Chocolate Vanilla Chocolate, Vanilla, Honeycomb, Strawberry, Banana, Natural Chocolate, Vanilla, Natural

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