The night is a time of rest and recovery. Sleep is what the body uses to heal itself, after enduring an intensive workout. It is during this time that growth happens. So the eight recommended hours are even more important for the bodybuilder. And providing all the nutrients that are needed to ensure this nightly growth and recovery is maxed out. Nighttime supplements are in abundance in the market, and two of the most popular ones are casein and micellar whey. Are they equally effective though?
Casein is a long time favorite among lifting enthusiasts because of its slow digesting properties. Unlike other forms of protein that tend to digest quickly to deliver those essential BCAAs to the muscles, casein takes longer. In the presence of stomach acid, it tends to gel. This increase in consistency means it take longer for pepsin and trypsin, the enzymes responsible for protein breakdown, to take effect. The result is a slow release of amino acids for a couple of hours. Casein has earned the trust of athletes who readily use it post workout, and right before bed. It has earned its place among the greats, and is hard to stand against.
Check out my reviews of Casein supplements.
This is a more recent introduction into the supplements market. This hybrid powder is considered ground breaking because it is more than just some protein concentrate. Whey, the gold standard among protein supplements, is fast digesting. It is ideal when you need to supply protein quickly to your muscles. But its strength is also its weakness. Because it is used up so quickly, it is not reliable at a time of fasting, when a constant supply is needed. So as a nighttime supplement, it falls short. Micellar whey though, suffers no such shortcoming. It is modified through a special filtration process that increases its molecular weight. The larger molecules of protein thus digest more slowly, allowing a more steady release of protein.
Check out my reviews of Micellar Whey supplements.
The Better Supplement
Casein has been tried and testing, and any concerns about its effectiveness have been comprehensively addressed. Micellar whey is relatively new. This means that there is not enough experimental data to verify its advantages in terms of gains in strength or size, over other nighttime supplements. That said, micellar whey does contain a higher leucine content, which means it offers better anabolic support. Its biological value, or its measure of absorption and usage, is said to be higher than that of casein.
There is no easy way to determine a winner when it comes to these two options without being subjective, or introducing some kind of bias. Casein offers anticatabolic support, and is available in many forms, as hydrolyzed and micellar casein. So micellar whey cannot dethrone it on the simple basis that it is newer. As an athlete, the best recommendation would be to experiment with both, and then compare the results you get with each, in regards to gain in strength and size. Established brands in the industry have their elaborate selections of both these nighttime supplements, so finding them should be nearly effortless.
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