Casein protein is the major protein found in cow’s milk, accounting for ~80% of the protein content. Whey accounts for the remaining 20%.
It’s renowned for its slow-digestion and rich, creamy taste.
If you’re familiar with our best-selling protein powder, 50/50 Formula-X, then you’re well-acquainted with the protein potency of whey + casein. But, if you’ve only ever used a pure whey protein powder, such as ISOBLAST, then you may wonder, “why should I even bother with casein?”
Whey vs Casein: Which is Better?
When trying to compare whey vs casein, there is no “better.” They are two sides of the same coin.
Both whey and casein are found in dairy products.
Both are complete proteins, containing all the essential amino acids (EAAs) the body needs to fuel protein synthesis.
Both are effective for supporting muscle recovery and growth -- this is why both are included in 50/50 Formula-X.
The major difference between whey and casein comes down to their speed of digestion.
Whey is much more quickly digested than casein.
Within an hour of drinking a whey protein shake, it’s quickly absorbed and spikes amino acid levels. However, those elevations can decrease to baseline levels in approximately 3 hours.
Casein protein, on the other hand, is much, much slower traversing the GI tract. It forms a viscous gel, which might sound slightly off-putting, but produces a sustained increase in plasma amino acids of ~7 hours.
When to Take Casein or Whey?
Realistically speaking, casein and/or whey can be taken any time of day. Hell, most of us grew up drinking regular cow’s milk during the day with nary a concern about an anabolic window.
That being said, if you’re pursuing “optimal” with your protein intake and nutrient timing, there may be a more favorable time to take whey vs casein protein powder.
Whey protein’s rapid digestion makes it ideal as a pre-workout, intra workout, or post-workout shake. It quickly passes through the GI tract, which means it won’t leave you feeling heavy/sluggish, and will be readily used by your muscles.
Casein protein’s slow digestion lends itself better to those times when you’re going for multiple hours (>3-4 hours) without food, such as a pre-bed snack or business trip -- times when you can’t stick to your regular meal schedule.
Benefits of Casein Protein
- Efficiently used by skeletal muscles*
- Sustained protein synthesis*
- Rich & creamy*
- Overnight muscle recovery & growth*
- Fight muscle breakdown*
- Amazing taste!
What is the Best Casein Protein Powder?
Apollon Casein delivers 25 grams of high-quality micellar casein protein to sustain muscle recovery between meals and overnight. Micellar casein is produced through a unique cold-filtration process that safeguards the small protein packages (micelles) that are responsible for its slow-digesting properties and retains more natural qualities, flavors, and texture of milk.
Other casein protein powders (as well as certain whey/casein blends and protein bars) include the cheaper, lower quality calcium/sodium caseinate.
Caseinates are produced by reacting milk curds with an alkaline material to restore its pH to near-neutral (milk products by nature are slightly acidic). Sodium and calcium-based chemicals are the most common choices for creating caseinates.
While caseinates are cheaper to produce, they are lower quality and lack the same taste and richness of micellar casein.[4,5] Additional studies also indicate that caseinates don’t offer the same satiating effects as micellar casein.
The takeaway here is that we're sticking to our ethos and delivering the best-quality casein protein powder -- Apollon Casein.
Each serving of Apollon Casein delivers 25g of premium-grade, cold-filtered micellar casein to provide a sustained influx of essential aminos into the bloodstream, thereby supporting muscle recovery, combating muscle breakdown, and improving satiety to help you stay on track with your goals, no matter if it’s building muscle, losing fat, or increasing recovery & performance.
How to Use
Apollon Casein can be consumed anytime of day, either by itself or in combination with the following Apollon Nutrition products:
- Cluster Bomb
- 50/50 Formula-V
- Alpha of Omegas
- Gut Glory
- Kidney Kindness
- Liver Lover
- Mind Games
- From Dusk Till Dawn
- Sharp Coffee
For overnight recovery, drink in the evening before bed.
For daytime muscle recovery and appetite support, enjoy a serving between meals as a low-calorie, satiating snack.
- Tipton KD, Elliott TA, Cree MG, Wolf SE, Sanford AP, Wolfe RR. Ingestion of casein and whey proteins result in muscle anabolism after resistance exercise. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2004 Dec;36(12):2073-81. doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000147582.99810.c5. PMID: 15570142.
- Antonio J, Ellerbroek A, Peacock C, Silver T. Casein Protein Supplementation in Trained Men and Women: Morning versus Evening. Int J Exerc Sci. 2017 May 1;10(3):479-486. PMID: 28515842; PMCID: PMC5421981.
- Reis, C.E.G.; Loureiro, L.M.R.; Roschel, H.; da Costa, T.H.M. Effects of pre-sleep protein consumption on muscle-related outcomes: A systematic review. J. Sci. Med. Sport 2021, 24, 177–182
- Felix da Silva, D., Ahrné, L., Ipsen, R. and Hougaard, A.B. (2018), Casein-Based Powders: Characteristics and Rehydration Properties. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, 17: 240-254. https://doi.org/10.1111/1541-4337.12319
- Komatsu Y, Wada Y, Izumi H, Shimizu T, Takeda Y, Hira T, Hara H. Casein materials show different digestion patterns using an in vitro gastrointestinal model and different release of glucagon-like peptide-1 by enteroendocrine GLUTag cells. Food Chem. 2019 Mar 30;277:423-431. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2018.10.123. Epub 2018 Oct 31. PMID: 30502166.