Casein, Casein, Casein. Chances are high that you’ve eaten casein at LEAST one time this week. Casein is derived from dairy, anything made with milk contains casein. (Yeah, even Pizza) Casein is a protein that produces the same results as whey but in a different manner.

Whey is composed to be quickly absorbed by the body once ingested, that is why it is most recommended post workout, when the body is most drained of nutrients.

Casein, on the other hand, is quite the opposite. Casein is digested by the body at a much slower rate, thus allowing you a dose of amino acids to last you for hours.

Almost every client I work with is taking a form of casein daily. I too am a HUGE fan of it. (Drinking a glass of milk as I write) The purpose of casein in the body is to keep a constant absorption, especially during sleep. My last snack is always 225g of greek yogurt with 16oz of milk. That is 40g of the best kind of protein you can have right before bed.

Whether you sleep at 9 pm or 3 am, incorporate these casein rich foods right before bed and you’re muscles will thank you. Most of the growth occurs while you undergo sleep, REM to be exact. Going to bed on an empty stomach isn’t going to provide the muscles with any fuel to repair itself.

Eggs, meat, soy, whey and other types of protein are good, but they all serve a purpose. While the other types of protein absorb much faster, casein can last hours, don’t settle for anything else right before bed.

If you’ve struggled like myself, unable to gain a pound no-matter how much you indulge, you need to incorporate casein Pre-Sleep. (Yeah, totally made that up) It is not too heavy on the stomach and you can benefit from the extra calories.

If you’re trying to cut down calories, the casein can prevent any hunger pangs that can occur right before you fall asleep, during the night and early in the mornings.

Due to its slow release protein, casein is also favored first thing in the morning. If you know you’re going to have a long morning, try some greek yogurt to get you through to your lunch, you’ll be surprised how much longer you’ll feel full.

-Eddie Villarreal

Top Dead Center

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