With so many different types of protein products out there, how do you know which one is best for you and your goals? They all do the same thing right? Not by a long shot. High protein foods and supplements have become “must have” for all athletes and fitness enthusiasts worldwide. Research shows that eating protein helps build muscle and in some cases, burn fat. Below are the different types of proteins available, what each does, and when each type of protein should be taken as each type works differently in the body.
The most popular of all the proteins has got to be whey protein. And for good reason! Whey proteins are quickly and easily digested, they are loaded with Essential Amino Acids-including the three Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAA), and have many more microfractions that appear to provide additional benefits. Whey is one of two major dairy proteins and accounts for about 20% of the protein in milk. Whey proteins are available in 3 common forms: Concentrates (lower protein level, more economical), Isolates (higher protein, more expensive), and Hydrolysates (partially broken down for faster digestion & absorption). With it’s fast acting properties, whey protein would be best used in one of 2 ways. An hour before a training session to keep the body full of nutrients it will soon be depleted of, or immediately (within 30-60 min) after a training session to help rebuild the muscles and replenish the body with nutrients.
The remaining 80% of the protein in milk is casein. Often referred to as a slower acting or time released protein because it is digested and absorbed much more slowly than the other proteins, casein proteins are especially useful when taken at bedtime and during other prolonged periods without eating.
Milk proteins are dried milk with most of the fat and carbohydrates removed. Like liquid moo juice, powdered milk proteins are about 20% whey and 80% casein, so utilization is intermediate.
Mr. Balboa had it right with the eggs for protein. While he was lucky not to get food poisoning, egg proteins are considered top of the line as far as quality. With loads of essential amino acids (EAA) and some of the highest protein quality scores, dairy-free egg protein is a great alternative for people who are lactose intolerant and everyone else.
There are still different times of the day to take these types of protein to better benefit from what they have to offer; but with these basic guidelines, you should be able to better know which protein is right for you.