INFORMATION ON WHEY PROTEIN

Whey Versus Casein Protein

by Jeff S. Volek, Ph.D., R.D.
Proteins provide the body critical amino acids that serve as building blocks for the formation of new muscle. But not all dietary proteins are equal. The major proteins in milk are casein and whey. These two milk proteins are both excellent sources of all the essential amino acids, but they differ in one important aspect—whey is a fast-digesting protein and casein is a slow-digesting protein.
Whey stimulates protein synthesis
Fast-digesting whey means it is emptied from the stomach quickly, resulting in a rapid and large increase in plasma amino acids. This translates into a quick but transient increase in protein synthesis, while protein breakdown is not affected. Whey also has higher levels of leucine, a potent amino acid that stimulates protein synthesis. Whey protein is superior at augmenting protein synthesis rapidly, but this positive effect is short-lived. Consuming repeated doses of whey allows for sustained high levels of blood amino acids and repeated bursts of protein synthesis that provide superior effects on muscle protein balance.1
Casein offers a positive protein balance
Casein is the most abundant protein in milk. It is relatively insoluble and tends to form structures called micelles that increase solubility in water. During the processing of milk, which usually involves heat or acid, the casein peptides and micelle structure become disturbed or denatured to form simpler structures. As a result, a gelatinous material is formed. This is the basis for why casein has a slower rate of digestion, and results in a slow but steady release of amino acids into circulation.
In one study, researchers gave healthy subjects 30 grams of either whey protein or casein protein and made several measures of the anabolic and catabolic effect for 7 hours after the meal.
2 Whey protein resulted in a rapid increase in blood amino acids and protein synthesis, but it was short-lived. Casein, on the other hand, resulted in a prolonged increase in blood amino acids that resulted in a 34% reduction in protein breakdown. The net protein balance remained more positive after intake of casein protein over a 7-hour period. The superior long-lasting effect of casein was attributed to a delayed gastric emptying and slower absorption rate from the gastrointestinal tract to the blood.
Whey and casein are better together
Since whey rapidly increases protein synthesis and casein blocks protein breakdown, a combination of both would be ideal.
A recent study compared the effects of supplementing with either a combination whey and casein protein versus carbohydrate on several markers of muscle anabolism during strength training.
3 Untrained men participated in a 10-week resistance training program and either supplemented with 40 grams of carbohydrate or 40 grams of protein containing a mixture of whey and casein. Half of the supplements were consumed one hour before and then immediately after exercise on workout days. The results were overwhelmingly positive for the combination protein group. Despite similar background diets and identical training programs, supplementation with protein resulted in greater increases in several measures of muscle anabolism, including greater increases in lean muscle mass, thigh muscle mass, muscle strength, anabolic hormones and muscle specific proteins.
In a similar study that lasted 14 weeks, untrained men performed resistance training and received either 25 grams of carbohydrate or 25 grams of a combination whey and casein protein one hour before and immediately after exercise.
4 The combination protein group had significantly greater increases in muscle fiber size compared to the carbohydrate group. These studies provide strong evidence that a combination protein consumed before and after workouts increases muscle size.
Practical uses of whey and casein
The science unequivocally shows that the digesting rate of protein is an important regulator of protein balance. Whey provides a quick burst of protein synthesis while casein makes an ideal protein supplement to sustain long periods of an anabolic environment for muscle growth. Based on these different characteristics, whey and casein can be used alone and in combination to exploit their unique biologic effects.
For example, whey protein can be very effective before and after a workout and first thing in the morning. But since the benefits of whey after exercise are short-lived, you should consume a meal containing protein 20-60 minutes after drinking a post-workout whey protein shake. In one study, 30 grams of whey protein were provided in a sequence of 13 small meals given each 20 minutes.
1 This was found to be far superior for muscle anabolism compared to a single meal of whey or casein.
Alternatively, a combination of whey and casein (20 grams) could be consumed one hour before and immediately after exercise for a sustained benefit on protein balance. Casein is a perfect protein for a shake before bed because it promotes a sustained anti-catabolic environment while you sleep.
Summary
Because whey and casein have different but complementary effects, many people keep both types on hand and use them differently throughout the day—whey in the morning and after workouts and casein before bed. Or you can mix whey protein into a large glass of milk (about 80% casein) to combine the benefits of both. Research shows these proteins support greater increases in lean body mass and decreases in body fat as part of a resistance training program.
References 1. Dangin M, Boirie Y, Garcia-Rodenas C, Gachon P, Fauquant J, Callier P, Ballevre O, Beaufrere B. The digestion rate of protein is an independent regulating factor of postprandial protein retention. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2001 Feb, 280(2):E340-8. 2. Boirie Y, Dangin M, Gachon P, Vasson MP, Maubois JL, Beaufrere B. Slow and fast dietary proteins differently modulate postprandial protein accretion. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1997, 94(26):14930-5. 3. Willoughby DS, Stout JR, Wilborn CD. Effects of resistance training and protein plus amino acid supplementation on muscle anabolism, mass, and strength. Amino Acids. 2006 Sep 20. 4. Andersen LL, Tufekovic G, Zebis MK, Crameri RM, Verlaan G, Kjaer M, Suetta C, Magnusson P, Aagaard P. The effect of resistance training combined with timed ingestion of protein on muscle fiber size and muscle strength. Metabolism. 2005 Feb, 54(2):151-6.

The Whey Prescription

The following text is an excerpt from the book, The Whey Prescription, by Christopher Valey, N.D.

What is Whey ?

During the manufacture of cheese, milk is curdled by means of rennet. The milk coagulates and a hard part (casein) and a liquid part (whey, also called lactoserum) appear. Whey is therefore the liquid that escapes from the curd when it is left to drain. It is transparent, yellowish-green in colour, and possesses a slightly tart flavour that is fairly pleasant.
The History of Whey
In 1749 a patient in the city of Zurich, Switzerland, who the medical treatments of the time were unable to cure and to whom the doctors were giving little time left to live, journeyed to the mountain village of Gais (in the canton of Appenzell) and was healed of his disease by drinking whey on a daily basis.
Was this patient aware of the past success of treatments based on drinking whey, the liquid known to the Greek doctors of Antiquity as “healing water”, or had he heard the peasants of this mountainous region talk about whey's healing properties?
 
We don't know but news of this patient, who had survived despite his doctor's terrible diagnosis, soon spread and numerous disease-sufferers flooded to Gais to benefit in turn from the miraculous healing properties of whey. A health spa was soon created in this tiny village. It was followed by the opening of more than 160 others in Switzerland, Austria, and Germany. These spas were most active in the middle of the eighteenth century and throughout the nineteenth century. The renowned benefits of the whey cure brought emperors, princes, and aristocrats from all of Europe to take the cure in these spas, to be healed of their ailments or simply to improve their general health.
 
What is most amazing about whey is that its healing properties have been recognized since antiquity and modern scientific research has only confirmed the knowledge of the ancients. The whey cure is used today just as it was twenty-four centuries ago. Few remedies or cures can boast of such a long history and such unanimous agreement about its virtues.
Hippocrates (466-377 BCE), the father of medicine, recommended whey to his patients. Following him, Galen (131-299 CE), another founding father of medicine, advised his patients about the whey cure. For a time he even directed a treatment centre sponsored by the famous school of Salerno at the foot of the “milk mountain” in Italy, between Sorrento and Naples.
The healing Properties of Whey
Whey has numerous healing properties. Contrary to other remedies or foods that act only on a single organ or in a single manner, whey's healing action works in multiple fashions. It acts on the intestines, liver, and kidneys, while encouraging assimilatory and eliminatory functions.
 
Here are four of its main healing properties.
  • With the lactic acid present and that produced by the lactose it contains, whey stimulates intestinal peristalsis.
    The muscles responsible for intestinal peristalsis can be stimulated in two ways. There is the mechanical way: This is caused by food fiber (wheat bran, oat bran, cellulose contained in fruits and vegetables) filling the intestine, which reflexively triggers the peristaltic process. Then there is the chemical way: This is caused by the presence of specific stimulating substances (the active substances of various medicinal plants or, in the case that concerns us specifically, the lactic acid of whey).
    Rather than having a purgative effect, whey is a quite gentle laxative. It is effective in the case of intestinal sluggishness as well for both occasional and chronic constipation. It has even sometimes provided excellent results in cases where the intestines have been exhausted by overuse of purges and harsh chemical laxatives.
  • Regenerating the Intestinal Flora
    The lactose content of whey inhibits the presence of bacteria that causes putrefaction and encourages the functions performed by the beneficial bacteria. By helping the intestinal flora regenerate, whey has a beneficial effect on the digestive process. When intestinal flora is partially destroyed or imbalanced, the transformation of food is poorly achieved, which can cause a number of chronic digestive disorders. Taking whey regularly can cure these problems and restore normal digestive function. The stools reacquire their normal consistency (neither too hard as is the case with constipation or too soft as occurs with diarrhea) and lose their foul odor. Flatulence and bloating also disappear. Lactose is the nourishment of choice for the beneficial bacteria of intestinal floras, because it allows them to reproduce and multiply much more easily. It is therefore particularly useful to consume whey at times when the microorganisms of the intestinal flora have been destroyed, for example when antibiotics have been taken.
  • Eliminating Excess Water from the Tissues
    Bodily tissues hold a certain amount of fluids that are retained there by, among other things, the presence of salt. Consequently, there is a physiologically beneficial salt content in the body. In certain pathological situations, however, this content can increase, which naturally results in an increase of the amount of fluid that is held. Edemas will appear, often in the legs (particularly around the ankles), the hands (making it difficult to remove rings), and the eyelids. Because this additional water content has caused the tissues that make up the various organs to swell, numerous health problems can result, including high blood pressure, blood or lymphatic stasis, and organ congestion.
    Taking whey, which is rich in potassium, is quite useful in these situations because potassium is the natural enemy of salt and expels it from the body along with the water it has retained. Whey does not create imbalance in the mineral composition of bodily fluids as chemical diuretics can. It expels only excess water the tissues are holding, and not the constituent fluid that is normally present.
    A large fluid elimination is one of he more visible and spectacular effects of the whey cure. The quantities of urine that are eliminated are clearly higher than the quantities of water ingested, especially when the individual has been retaining water.
  • Stimulating Toxin elimination by the Kidneys
    The kidneys are among the main organs for the elimination of wastes and metabolic residues. They filter wastes out of the blood and eliminate them in a diluted form as urine. The kidneys are constantly working to maintain the composition of the blood as close to its ideal as possible.
    The wastes eliminated by the kidneys include urea, uric acid, creatinine, salts, and expended minerals. For various reasons however, this elimination can take place in an insufficient manner. Unable to exit the blood, the wastes collect in the body where they can cause various disorders. Gout, for example, is a disease caused by the presence of too much uric acid in the body, acid the kidneys should be eliminating. This disease is displayed by very painful crisis of acute arthritis, generally located in the big toe.
    Other diseases caused by poor renal elimination include rheumatism, osteoarthritis, and some forms of eczema. The kidneys themselves can also be afflicted when wastes collect in their filters.
    During a whey cure, the heightened levels of liquid traveling through the kidney support the transport and elimination of toxins. This cleans out the renal filter, thereby increasing the possibilities for waste evacuation, and allows the wastes carried to the kidneys by the blood to be much more easily and copiously eliminated. The end result is a general cleansing of the entire system.
    Blood analysis after whey cures confirms that the blood has rid itself of numerous wastes. This is also evident by the fact that the symptoms of diseases will diminish in intensity or disappear altogether.
Principal Indications for the Whey Cure
  • Antibiotic Treatment
  • Bladder Infections
  • Blood Viscosity and High Cholesterol
  • Constipation or Intestinal Laziness
  • Diabetes
  • Fatigue, Lack of Energy and Enthusiasm
  • Gas and Bloating
  • Heart Attack, Brain Congestion
  • Hemorrhoids
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Indigestion
  • Joint Diseases
  • Kidney Diseases
  • Kidney Stones
  • Liver Diseases and Insufficiencies
  • Muscular Spasms and Cramps
  • Skin Disorders
  • Water Retention and Edema
  • Weight Problems

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Anti-Aging Secrets of Glutathione

STOP THE CLOCK
Discover the Anti-Aging Secrets of Glutathione
Glutathione is the master antioxidant, the 'food' for your immune system, and a major detoxifier of of your body. It also holds incredible anti-aging secrets. So, where do you get Glutathione? It's important to realize that glutathione is produced within your cells from three amino acids. Non-denatured whey protein is one the the most effective ways for your body to get the necessary building blocks, amino acids, to synthesize Glutathione.