Different Types Of Protein And Their Uses
Anthony Duong is a freelance writer based in London, UK.
He coaches youth soccer and teaches physical education.
Many of you probably didn’t even know there were different types of protein. But there are, and it’s important for you to know the pros and cons of each one, because it can have drastic effects on your gains.
To begin, I’m going to say that protein is the single most important nutrient if you lift weights. Carbs, fats and everything else, if you accidentally miss out on these for a day or two, the effects will be negative, but not even close to the effects of a protein deficiency. They are the building blocks of the human body itself. Without protein, your muscles would not recover from the vigorous working we force upon our muscles.
Now to get onto the different types of protein.
Often the most widely used, and also, often quoted as the most effective type of protein, it is made out of milk, and is absorbed by the body extremely quickly. It is thought to have the best amino acid make up out of the different types of protein out there, and is often drunk in ‘shake’ form.
In general, Whey protein is the best type to absorb during training, as it is quickly absorbed in minutes, and so your body will be feeding on the protein required quickly, and also efficiently. It also works as an effective anti-oxidant and boosts your immune system.
The amount of whey that should be absorbed varies greatly from person-to-person, but in general, if you are looking for some seriously high gains (professional body builder level), you typically have to absorb around 150grams of the stuff a day. However, for the training athlete, even a good 25 – 50 grams will suffice. High doses of whey protein are not recommended however, as it can damage the liver.
Casein protein, in my opinion, is one of the most underrated proteins of all time, as it often thought as to be the ‘useless’ protein, however I (and recent studies on the make up of the protein itself) disagree with this.
It is absorbed extremely slowly, and is also very rich. It continues to feed your muscles for long periods, and is known to sustain steady amino acid flow to your body for periods of time up to 7 hours! That is a huge time frame difference in comparison to whey.
Casein is also found in milk, however it is not separated by any chemical means, merely just by ultra-filtration.
Because of Casein’s slow-release properties, it is often used as an overnight supplement to slowly ‘trickle’ a flow of protein to your body.
Egg protein was once widely thought of as the most effective way of getting protein into your diet. However, with the discovery of Whey Isolate, it has lost popularity due to the high cholesterol in eggs. However, it is not completely useless, and if you are looking for a very more ‘natural’ way of getting your protein, or if protein powders are not easily sourced where you live, then eggs may be a great alternative.
Soy protein is regarded to be a very effective protein, due to its lack of fat, cholesterol and lactose. It is approved for those with a lactose-intolerance, and is also very good if you want to literally eat protein, and you are a vegetarian.
Soy protein powder is a fantastic substitute for flour, and so it can be used to cook with. Soy itself is an extremely powerful anti-oxidant, and is known to heavily support a healthy immune system.