Protein for Weight Loss
The weight loss protein debate centers around the effectiveness of casein and whey protein as weight loss supplements. Which type of protein can help you safely lose weight?
Support for Whey Protein
Whey, as a weight loss protein, is derived from animal milk sources.
Supporters of these products report that whey protein is superior to other protein supplements and can help dieters achieve their weight loss goals.
Here are the facts on whey protein:
- Pure whey is most commonly found in a powder form for making a shake.
- Whey protein quickly increases the blood levels of amino acids, usually within 1 hour, after ingestion.
- The increase in amino acids after ingestion a whey protein shake peaks around 2 hours and falls to normal levels by 4 hours.
- Little evidence is available on this fast build up of amino acids and the affects on weight loss. The results of some of the studies are inconclusive, at best.
- A faster recovery and repair of muscle tissue after exercise is a clear benefit of whey protein. This can indirectly help dieters successfully reach their weight loss goals.
- By supporting muscle tissue, whey protein helps to stabilize a fast metabolic rate -- a fast metabolic rate is critical to weight loss success.
- However, to benefit from this affect, the protein shake must be ingested right before a workout.
Whey protein appears to help dieters lose weight by supporting muscle tissue.
Support for Casein Protein
The other weight loss protein, casein, is derived from animal sources. Claiming superiority over other weight loss proteins, here are the facts on casein protein:
Casein protein seems to help dieters lose weight by preserving muscle tissue and promoting the breakdown of stored fat.
- It also is found in powder form for making a shake.
- Casein protein raises blood levels of amino acids much later than whey protein. Usually, the rise in amino acids begins around 2 hours after drinking the shake, peaks around 4 hours, and falls off 6 hours later.
- No evidence can support casein protein in the recovery and repair of muscle tissue after exercising.
- Evidence does support casein protein in the preservation of muscle tissue when fasting or dieting. Some suggest it might even promote fat loss in individuals trying to lose weight.
- This "fat loss" benefit is possible if the shake is consumed during times of long fasting (like between lunch and dinner, the second longest fast of the day for most people).
Weight Loss Protein Conclusion
Both whey and casein proteins appear to enhance weight loss efforts in two distinct methods.
Whey Protein--Supports muscle tissue.
Casein Protein--Preserves muscle tissue and may promote fat loss.
Michael A. Smith, MD
Chief Medical Consultant
Diet Basics Website
Dr. Smith is the Chief Medical Consultant for Diet Basics, a content rich website dedicated to all dieters. Please visit his site at weight-loss-professional.com
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