The Best Protein Powder for Builidng Muscle
The supplement market is flooded with protein powders that all claim to be the best for building muscle. Some companies claim that whey protein alone is best while others market a blend of proteins, many of which you have probably never heard. With so many products to choose from it is difficult if not impossible to get a product that will actually help you achieve your goals and not waste your money. This article tells you which type of protein supplement has been shown through research to be the best for building muscle. We'll also tell you and which products use this type of protein.
And the Winner for Best Protein Is
When it comes to building muscle, you don't need just one protein but a blend that provides high levels of specific amino acids that are absorbed over a long period of time. The proteins that best meet these requirements are whey and casein. Whey protein contains high levels of muscle building branched chain amino acids. Branched chain amino acids also help you hold onto the muscle you've added while dieting. Whey also contains various protein microfractions including lactoferrin that keeps your immune system strong. The downside to whey for building muscle is that it is absorbed very rapidly which means amino acid levels are not elevated long enough for muscle growth to occur. Casein on the other hand is absorbed much slower producing a more optimal environment for muscle growth. When you combine both whey and casein you get a supplement that contains lots of branched chain amino acids and other nutrients that are delivered over a period of hours. This isn't merely speculation on our part that this blend of proteins works. Studies show that this combination of proteins is better for building muscle and losing fat than whey protein alone (1,2). Studies also show that whey-casein supplementation is better for increasing strength levels (3). When compared to a placebo, whey, and whey-casein protein powder for their ability to help subjects build muscle, the whey-casein group added muscle and lost fat and the whey group made no greater improvement than subjects using a placebo (1,2).
Selecting a Whey Casein Protein Powder When selecting a whey-casein protein powder there are a couple of things to look for that will ensure you get a quality product. First, make sure the protein powder contains micellar casein as its casein source. Derived through a unique filtration process, micellar casein retains all of the health-promoting microfractions casein contains and also contains a high amounts of glutamine. The second key feature is to make sure the whey protein used is ion exchange whey protein isolate. Whey protein isolate retains the key protein microfractions specific to whey protein including alpha lacta-albumin and lactoferrin that keeps your immune system healthy. By choosing a product with whey isolate you are also guaranteed to get more protein per serving than other types of whey, no lactose, little to no carbohydrates, and large amounts of branched chain amino acids.
Whey and Casein Products We Recommend
Now that we have provided you with information regarding why you should use a whey-casein protein supplement and what to look for we'll make the shopping process even easier by giving you our recommendations for the best whey-casein products on the market. We've broken our recommendations into three categories: best overall whey-casein supplement, best whey-casein supplement for the cost, and best whey-casein meal replacement powder.
How Much Do You Need According to current research, 40-60 grams of whey-casein are required per day. This is equal to 2-3 scoops daily. Remember that in order to build muscle you need to make sure that you get at least .8 grams per pound of bodyweight daily. A couple of whey-casein shakes per day will help you easily meet your daily requirements and provide the building blocks you need to build muscle.
When Should You Drink Your Shakes
There are two ways to get the most from your whey-casein protein shakes. One is to drink a couple of shakes per day between meals. This will help you stay full and keep a steady supply of amino acids going to your muscles. You can also drink a shake with your meal to add more protein and calories. Either way will work fine. The two times you don't want to drink a whey-casein shake is before and after a workout. These are the times you want a protein that is quickly absorbed such as whey protein isolate with quickly absorbed carbohydrates.
Best Whey and Casein Products
We have ranked the three best whey-casein protein supplements available in three key categories: best overall, best value, and best whey-casein meal replacement powder.