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What is the difference between casein and whey protein?

In the market we can find different natural forms of proteins from animals and vegetables (such as rice, hemp or legumes).

For a long time, good properties have been attributed to protein powders. That’s why we wanted to compare casein and whey protein, widely used in the world of fitness.

Although both casein and whey come from milk, there are notable differences between them, and that is why we are going to make them known.

This article delves into the differences between these two products, the advantages they can bring us in health and learn to choose the right one for your daily needs.

The advantages of protein in your diet

Protein fulfills many vital functions for the body, so it is essential for the proper functioning of our daily activity. Without it, we are not able to build muscle mass and perform tasks fundamental to survival.

Here we show you some functions of proteins in our body.

  • Messenger proteins: many proteins act as hormones, coordinating cell signaling.
  • Enzymes: they act from chemical reactions in our body.
  • Proteins Structural: these proteins form the skeleton and support of the skin, bones, muscles and tendons.
  • Antibodies: they act by destroying foreign particles, such as viruses and bacteria, making it a protective barrier against infection.
  • Storage and transport: they translocate substances (hormones, active ingredients of medicines, enzymes, etc.) in all parts and organs of your body.

In turn, the advantages produced by these proteins in our body have been documented in a multitude of scientific trials:

Reduce body fat

Proteins favor the elimination of body fat by reducing the sensation of appetite and increasing metabolic activity

Blood glucose control

When we consume protein to the detriment of carbohydrates and sugars, we can balance the amount of sugar in our blood, especially in people suffering from type 2 diabetes. [Additional Information]

Blood pressure control

Scientific studies indicate that those people who ingest more protein than others, regardless of the source of origin, enjoy, in general, a lower blood pressure [Source of information]

Although these benefits are not specifically associated with casein or whey, they are part of the set of proteins available through food.

Casein and whey come from milk

Both whey and casein are the two types of proteins that come from milk. Whey provides 80% of the total protein from this source of origin, and whey the remaining 20%.

The virtue of both is that they are high quality consieradas proteins, because they contain practically all essential amino acids that we need to get through food and that we cannot produce it.

Another advantage is that both products offer good digestion and ease of absorption.

Whey protein and caserina come from a by-product in the manufacture of cheese. When this food is produced, enzymes and acids are provided to the milk to promote coagulation (from liquid to solid). This causes liquid substances, or whey protein, to be separated and subsequently dried and can be used as a dietary supplement.

Musculature building: better whey protein versus casein

Whey from milk is especially suitable for muscle training, because it offers rapid assimilation and a magnificent amino acid profile.

The serum contains in greater quantity the considered branched chain amino acids (BCAAs), such as leucine, valine and isoleucine.

In the case of casein, it contains more amino acids such as methionine, histidine or phenylalanine.

The construction of new musculature and the one that starts the whole process is offered by the amino acid leucine. [Additional Information sobre la leucina]

Therefore, whey favors the synthesis of muscle proteins, the beginning of muscle growth, to a greater extent than casein.

On the other hand, there is no verified information on whether the serum it is able to produce more muscle growth in the long term.

Both offer beneficial compounds

Casein and whey proteins

Casein and whey protein offer what is known as bioactive peptides, which are elements that stimulate the body. [Source of information]

Let’s see, case by case, what each of the two products from milk offer us.

Casein protein

Casein contains several bioactive peptides that have been shown to activate the immune system and promote digestion. These peptides improve the functionality of the heart by lowering blood pressure and decreasing the appearance of blood clots.

These peptides work similarly to angiotensin-transforming enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, a well-known type of medication used to control blood pressure in hypertensive patients.

As for the digestive system, bioactive peptides bind and transport very interesting minerals such as phosphorus and calcium, improving their absorption and assimilation.

Whey protein

Whey protein contains several active proteins known as immunoglobulins that activate and stimulate the immune system, as in the previous case.

It has been shown that these immunoglobulins offer antimicrobial activity, delaying the development of potentially harmful microorganisms (bacteria and viruses). [Additional Information]

Whey protein has shown antioxidant effects and growth inhibition of certain types of tumors.

These immunoglobulins are also able to act as transporters of essential nutrients, especially vitamin A, facilitating the absorption of other minerals such as iron.

Which one is right for you?

Despite its different components, whey protein and casein offer similar activities and functions in terms of benefits to the body. In addition, in terms of nutritional suc oposition also vary little

Whey protein

Nutritional composition of whey protein (standard tablespoon)

  • Energy: 110 kcal
  • Grease: 1 gram
  • Carbohydrates: 2 grams
  • Protein: 24 grams

Casein protein

Nutritional composition of whey protein (standard tablespoon)

  • Energy: 120 kcal
  • Grease: 1 gram
  • Carbohydrates: 4 grams
  • Protein: 24 grams


  • Iron: 4% of the RDI.
  • Calcium: 50% of the RDI.

Therefore, casein provides more minerals than serum.

Other factors to consider

  • Casein powder is usually more expensive than whey.
  • Whey powder offers better mixing stability than casein.
  • Whey protein powder offers better taste than casein.

It is common to buy and mix both proteins to get the best (and worst) of each of them, for a more complete and balanced nutrition.

How to use both products

The usual mixing of whey or casein is done with water or milk. They are the well-known protein shakes.

If you can, it is advisable to mix the protein powder and water or milk with a blender or other type of blender instead of stirring with a spoon. The consistency will be smoother and there will be a better dispersion of proteins.

Always add the liquid first and then the protein powder.  This will cause the protein not to stick to the bottom of the container.

About Andrew Parkinson

Andrew Parkinson is a highly accomplished pharmacist with a passion for improving healthcare. With a wealth of experience in both community and clinical pharmacy settings, he's known for his dedication to patient well-being. Mr. Parkinson actively engages in medication management, offering personalized solutions and promoting better health outcomes. He has also played a pivotal role in educating patients on proper medication usage and potential interactions. Andrew's commitment to advancing the field of pharmacy and ensuring safe and effective drug therapies has garnered him recognition as a trusted and invaluable healthcare professional, making a positive impact on countless lives.

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