Western Dairy-01The Cage Match of Protein Powders – Whey vs. Casein vs. Soy vs. Egg

So for some reason the entire grocery store is out of chocolate milk….and you are thinking to yourself “How am I going to recover from practice?” Going to the supplement store can be kind of scary at times. They have more walls than the pentagon filled with different types of proteins jugs that feature massive muscles and empty promises of turning you into a ripped beast that can take on the terminator in his prime. Here at Western Dairy Association we don’t like to give out empty promises, but we do like to inform the community with pertinent information. This article will help you decide which protein powder is best for you. Here are the four most common protein powders on the market and how they work in your body.

Whey Protein Powder:

-Whey protein is one of two proteins found in cow’s milk. Whey protein is made during the separation process of making cheese. Special enzymes are added to milk and the curd starts to separate from the whey. The curd is then used to make cheese while the whey is pasteurized and dried to make protein powder.

-There are two different types of whey protein powder: Isolate and concentrates. Whey protein isolate has a higher concentration of protein per gram because other ingredients like lactose, fat, and some vitamins and minerals are removed. Both types of whey offer health benefits. The difference between most of these protein powders is how quickly they are absorbed into the body. When whey protein is digested, it starts going to work right away on your torn muscles – within 40 minutes of digestion. Since whey is digested rapidly, it is the most popular protein supplement on the market today. To learn more about whey protein please visit The Power of Whey.

Casein Protein Powder:

-Like whey, casein powder is made from cow’s milk. Casein protein makes up 80 percent of the protein from milk and whey makes up the other 20 percent. Casein is a much slower digesting protein than whey. When digested, casein gels up and slows the rate of digestion in the stomach. Many athletes and body builders drink casein protein before they go to bed to help optimize protein synthesis throughout the night.

Soy Protein:

-Soy protein is considered the only plant-based protein that is high quality protein. Soy protein is processed by removing the oil from the flake of the soy bean and then drying out the flakes to create soy bean powder. Soy protein is the preferred choice for athletes that are vegetarian or vegan. Soy protein has a slower digestion rate than whey, but a faster digestion rate than casein.

Egg Protein:

-Egg protein is made by dehydrating whole eggs and or egg whites until no liquid is left in and then blending them into a fine powder. Egg protein has a faster digestion rate than soy and casein powder, but still has a slower digestion rate than whey. Egg protein powder is recommended for those with severe lactose intolerance. However, whey isolate protein contains a higher percentage of protein and can be lactose free. Usually depends on the supplement company.

To learn more about whey protein powder and the importance of recovery visit Western Dairy Association’s Sports Nutrition page.

*All information associated with the Western Dairy Association “Nutriton Corner” is sponsored by Western Dairy Association as a partnership with University of Denver Athletics & Recreation, and not provided by trainers or staff of the Coors Fitness Center.