In A Nutshell: Casein is a protein extract from milk that provides a rich supply of amino acids to the body and enhances exercise performance. Even if you do not perform exercise on a regular basis, the energy levels are increased; thus, you will find that you will be able to sustain energy through your ordinary everyday activities.
What is Casein?
Those who work out need extra protein, and casein supplements very adequately answer this need. Casein provides high-quality protein, calcium, and amino acids. It is also slowly digested; hence, it stays longer in the system and continues to provide nourishment hours after ingestion.
Casein may be taken as a sports drink (the powdered form is mixed with water) just prior to going to bed or as a protein shake for a snack.
As a protein, casein increases the body’s ability to maintain the structural integrity of cells, repairs damage, fights infections, promotes growth, and regenerates tissues, and transports necessary nutrients and substances throughout the body. It also provides added energy for all physical exertions, and that includes your sex life.
Casein is also known as “milk protein isolates.” About 80% of the protein in milk is casein. The other 20% is whey.
Good dietary sources of casein are milk and dairy products, especially cheese, although these may cause dietary problems for those who are overweight.
Uses of Casein
Casein supplements are a great way to augment the protein supply of the body, but they should never be the person’s sole source of protein. Think of casein as added protein to fill in nutritional gaps, help fuel your workouts, and build up lean muscle mass. Eat healthy protein within the course of your normal diet.
As an exercise supplement, casein works long term for increased muscle retention, greater fat loss, and decreased muscle breakdown. This is useful for men who have reached middle age and who may not have been as active as they used to be. Coupled with a gentle exercise routine at first, the exercise regime can be built up during the course of taking casein, and the supplement will make this natural progression easier.
An important characteristic of casein is that it is slowly digested, taking up to several hours for it to be fully absorbed in the body. Thus, it won’t work well as a pre-workout energy drink or as a post-workout recovery drink. It is best to take casein at night before going to sleep and as a snack at any time during the day. Fast-digesting proteins, such as whey, are more suitable for immediate pre- workout fueling and post-workout muscle recovery.
Another use for casein that current research has discovered is that it promotes colon health. It appears that casein is more effective than meat and soy in this regard. More studies are being conducted to further explore whether casein may be used to treat colon ailments.
Form and Dosage of Casein
Casein powder is available in different flavors. It can be mixed with water or other liquids to form a protein drink or shake. Anywhere between 20 and 40 grams daily is recommended. As mentioned, it can be taken just before sleeping at night or as a snack between meals. The night hours provide sufficient time for casein to be fully digested, providing much energy and nourishment ready for use the next day.
Whey and casein are complementary protein supplements that can be taken together. One is rapidly digested and the other is not. Take whey right in the morning and casein before bed. Take whey just before and after workouts and casein at other times of the day as a rich snack drink.
Some people mix casein and whey together to make one mighty, nutrient-dense protein shake, and this works well, too. Together, whey and casein produce appreciably better results from a resistance training program; the upshot is larger increases in lean body mass and larger decreases in body fat. When mixing casein and why together, it is recommended to be taken as post-workout shake; include 10 to 20 grams of casein and 20 to 40 grams of whey protein.
Safety and Precautions of Casein
Casein is generally safe to use for everyone, except for those who are lactose-intolerant.
There are isolated reports linking casein to cancer, respiratory problems, and allergies, but by and large, there is no scientific basis for such worries. Only those who have hypersensitivity to milk experience allergic reactions, as expected, from drinking casein.
People who are taking medicine for high blood pressure should be cautious about taking casein supplements. These can interfere with the action of drugs for hypertension, especially close to a scheduled surgical procedure. For safety, stop taking casein about two weeks prior to a surgery.