What is Casein Good for?

In this article, we'll tell you what casein is and what it's good for. If you start to include it in your routines, this high-value protein could provide a number of health benefits.
What is Casein Good for?

Last update: 03 February, 2021

Casein is a protein found in dairy products that plays a specific role in the building and regeneration of lean tissue. Most protein supplements don’t include it, but some do.

Casein is an animal protein and that means that it has a high biological value. This is important because it means that it contains essential amino acids that can be properly digested. They also metabolize well, although it has some unique traits, as we’ll see below.

Why are proteins important?

As you probably already know, proteins are fundamental for building muscle tissues. And whether you live a sedentary lifestyle or do a lot of sport, you need them to keep your lean tissues in good condition.

In fact, in this study published in Nutrition Research, researchers found a link between protein intake and a reduced risk of muscle wastage.

Along with fats, proteins also delay gastric emptying and help you to feel full. This helps to control your appetite and stop you from eating too much and gaining weight. This is a particularly important aspect when you consider how harmful obesity is for your overall health.

Casein has some special properties

A glass of warm milk.

As we mentioned, casein is a dairy protein. However, it takes a particularly long time to digest when compared to other nutrients found in dairy products. As a result, it’s a good nutrient to consume before you go to bed since it’ll stimulate nocturnal protein synthesis and help increase muscle mass.

Casein supplements focus on the recovery of lean tissues after physical exercise. However, it’s possible to get the right dose by simply drinking milk. However you want to include it in your diet, we recommend that you do it at night as it can cause stomach discomfort during the day.

Casein and its effects on body composition

So, as you can see, regularly consuming casein before bed will help to improve your body composition, as backed up by this study published in Nutrients.

This is true for both athletes and non-athletes alike. In fact, this can even be a good habit for elderly people to help reduce muscle degeneration as they get older.

The best recommendation is to consume about two-thirds of an ounce of milk at night time. And in combination with other aids such as creatine post-training, you could see some significant results.

Not only will this help you to increase your muscles’ ability to recover, but it’ll also reduce the risk of injury. However, regardless of your reasons for wanting to include casein in your diet, it’s always best to consult a dietitian first.

So, you have two potential options. Firstly, you could visit a dietitian who may prescribe you some casein supplements.

Or secondly, you can drink some milk before bed; around about a pint should be enough. If you opt for this second choice, make sure you adjust your diet to suit, as milk contains quite a lot of calories.

Casein can provide a number of health benefits

Some casein powder and a spoon.

Casein is a dairy protein but what makes it stand out in this group of proteins is the time it takes to digest. As a result, it’s good for specific reasons, whether you’re an athlete or not.

Now that you know more about casein, you might want to try including it in your diet. It can be really useful for increasing lean mass or reducing muscle degeneration over time.

However, regardless of how you choose to do it, you should also combine this with regular physical exercise. This way, you’ll get even more health benefits from this protein.

If you have any questions, particularly about casein supplements, make sure you ask a professional. Choosing the right supplement for you isn’t exactly straight-forward, and it’ll be best to get help from someone who knows what they’re talking about. Any nutritional supplement will be wasted if it’s not the right one or if you don’t use it correctly.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Naseeb MA., Volpe SL., Protein and exercise in the prevention of sarcopenia and aging. Nutr Res, 2017. 40: 1-20.
  • Trommelen J., Loon LJC., Pre sleep protein ingestion to improve the skeletal adaptive response to exercise training. Nutrients, 2016.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.