Micellar casein is a whole protein supplement derived from milk. Casein is the major type of protein in milk, and it is an excellent source of amino acids used by many athletes and bodybuilders for its unique properties of maintaining a positive protein balance and an anabolic state for many hours after it is taken. However, what many people may not realize is that there are several different ways of preparing casein supplements, with some being much superior to others. XBrain’s micellar casein is not only organic, it is also prepared with extreme care, using low heat and filtration to preserve the beneficial compounds in milk, making it a truly superior product.
Casein represents 80% of the protein in milk, and it is an excellent source of amino acids containing all the ten essential protein building blocks that must be obtained from the diet. Because casein is quite hydrophobic and not very soluble in water it can be quite difficult to concentrate from milk. Micellar casein exists as tiny particles, known as micelles in suspension. As such it is highly bioactive and beneficial. Casein precipitates in acidic conditions, such as are found in the stomach, creating a slowly digesting gel-like matrix, which has a low gastric clearing rate. It stays in the stomach for a long time, slowly releasing its amino acids, and maintaining a moderately elevated level of free serum amino acids which prevent protein breakdown and maintain an anabolic state in which new proteins are synthesized. As well as the anabolic benefits of casein, a supplement produced from organic milk contains many other unique nutrients found in milk, such as essential plyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids, conjugated linoleic acid, calcium and vitamins.
For this reason the process through which the supplement is prepared is so important. Cheaper manufacturing processes use high temperatures and harsh chemicals, and destroy many of the nutrients, making the supplement far less beneficial. In contrast, XBrain’s organic micellar casein supplement is prepared with extreme care, using low heat briefly and a gentle filtration process to preserve all the nutrients in milk.
Micellar casein is usually taken for its famous anabolic properties. Studies have shown that the supplement can enhance protein synthesis by 31%, and that it can prevent protein breakdown by 38%. Casein is unique in that it functions for hours after it is taken, other protein supplements stop working within an hour of ingestion due to their fast absorption. However, the benefits of casein don’t stop at its role as a source of amino acids. In the stomach casein is digested into several bioactive peptides such as glycomacropeptide, casomorphins and casein-phospo peptide. However, to obtain the benefits from these peptide, which include appetite regulation and suppression, and the transport of phosphate and calcium into the body, they must remain intact. Many of the harsher manufacturing processes use intense, prolonged, heat, or harsh chemicals and denature the peptides causing them to become inactive.
High temperatures, which are sadly frequently used in preparing milk-derived supplements are extremely bad from a nutritional point of view since they denature proteins. Protein functionality depends not only on the amino sequence but also on the tertiary structure in which the proteins are folded. Prolonged heating destroys this three dimensional structure causing the proteins to loose their function. High temperatures also destroy several of the essential amino acids meaning that the casein supplement provides far less nutritional value.
Harsh chemicals and substances that dramatically change the pH of the preparation are also a big problem. Proteins, and other nutrients in milk, are very sensitive to changes in the acidity or alkalinity of their environment and can only function within a narrow pH range. Some manufacturers use acids such as hydrochloric or sulphuric acid to separate casein from whey protein. Treating the milk concentrate with harsh chemicals during the purification process also causes the proteins to denature, with similar problems to those caused by excessive heat.. Here, again, XBrain’s organic micelar casein uses the more expensive filtration process to concentrate the supplement rather than harsh chemicals, producing a supplement with full nutritional value.
Organic micellar casein can be a very high quality protein supplement with unique functions that prevent protein breakdown and maintain an anabolic state for many hours after ingestion. It is a complete protein, which can provide all ten essential amino acids. In addition to its protein content, micellar casein prepared from high quality organic milk might provide many other essential nutrients. However, the way the supplement is prepared has an enormous influence on the nutritional value of the final product. XBrain’s organic micellar casein supplement is prepared with the utmost care, using low heat and microfiltration to preserve all the precious nutrients and deliver a truly superior product.