Whey Protein Isolate
Whey protein isolate is the most pure and concentrated form of whey protein available. It contains 90% or more protein. Whey Protein Isolate is also the lowest carbohydrate, lowest fat, and lowest lactose containing protein. This makes it perfect for anyone looking to add protein to a fat loss diet, or for those who are lactose intolerant.
Whey Protein Concentrate
Whey Concentrate is a more moderate-to-slow release protein that is best used with snacks or meals. Whey protein concentrate has anywhere between 75% and 89% protein depending upon the product. As the protein level in whey protein concentrate decreases the amounts of fat and/or lactose usually increase. This form of protein does not go well as a post-workout because of its slow release rate. On the other hand, that slow release makes it perfect to add to snacks to keep your blood amino levels maximized and your blood sugar levels balanced.
Whey Concentrate contains a touch more carbohydrates and fat than Whey Isolate. So it’s not ideal if you are lactose intolerant.
Whey Protein Blends (WPI/WPC)
Whey protein blends are made with both whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate. Blends provide a balance between the rapid absorption of whey protein isolate and the relatively slower absorption of whey protein concentrate. Blends have an excellent profile of amino acids. They usually have less lactose, fat and carbs than whey protein concentrate alone, but more than whey protein isolate alone. They provide a balance in terms of nutrition and price. Whey protein blends are the most popular protein powders because they provide excellent quality products, at an affordable price.
Casein protein is the predominant protein found in milk. It makes up about 80% of the protein in cows milk, while the remaining 20% of protein in milk is whey. Casein provides prolonged release of amino acids over time, which is important for keeping you full between meals plus it reduces the muscle damage than can typically occur 48 hours post work out. Casein may be beneficial before bed because the slow absorption will supply your body with protein through the night when it enters a catabolic state (breakdown of protein tissue for energy). Casein is not designed to be used instead of whey, it’s designed to be used with it. Whey and casein are completely different products and will help you build and maintain muscle in different ways.
Soy protein is made using soya beans, and is very low in (or free of) fat, cholesterol and lactose. Soy protein is approved for those who are lactose intolerant, and it’s fast digestion properties make it ideal for athletes. Soy protein is the best way to increase, or supplement, your protein intake using non-animal sources. Soy Protein’s high BCAA score (the composition amino acids within the protein) make it ideal for muscle growth and high protein diets.
The benefits of soy primarily come from its isoflavone content. Isoflavones are a type of antioxidant that combats cell damage. These isoflavones have anabolic effects, aiding in repairing damaged muscle tissue after resistance training.
Soy protein also has these positive health benefits:
• Maintains cholesterol levels within a normal range by blocking the absorption of LDL Cholesterol
• Helps reduce the risk of heart disease
• Supports a healthy immune system
• Epidemiological studies suggest that soy protein may reduce the risk of certain cancers, including breast cancer and prostate cancer.
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SOURCE: Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, 2005. Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.