Everything you need to know about protein absorption rates
If you were wondering about the rates of protein absorption, Nutrimuscle answers your questions and provides you with a lot of information on the subject.
To know how to choose your protein , you must first understand what absorption rate is, how it works, and how it impacts your performance.
What is protein absorption rates?
In order to understand what protein absorption rates is, you must first understand the protein digestion mechanism works.
Proteins are macro-molecules made up of smaller pieces called amino acids. The process of digestion involves "breaking up" proteins into amino acids that can be absorbed by the body.
There are several stages in the absorption of protein by the body:
- After ingestion, the protein ends up in the stomach. This is the gastric phase where the ambient acidity causes the complex structure of proteins to change. This is where the "splitting" of proteins into amino acids begins.
- Then the protein digestion process continues in the duodenum (the first segment of the small intestine)
- Finally, it is at the cellular level of the inner wall of the small intestine that the work of breaking down proteins into absorbable amino acids is completed.
- These amino acids then circulate in the blood to supply muscle energy and stimulate protein synthesis and renewal, which are essential for proper muscle development.
The rate of protein absorption is therefore defined by the rates at which the aforementioned steps take place and more particularly the rate of digestion.
So how do you explain the existence of multiple rates of protein absorption?
Protein powder generally used for bodybuilding comes from milk. This same milk is broken down into two major protein components:
These two types of proteins do not have the same amino acid composition and they do not react in the same way to the acidity of the stomach.
Thus, after having been ingested, whey proteins are found in the stomach and are "released" quickly, pass through the duodenum, are split into amino acids which are absorbed in large quantities immediately by the body and on a short duration.
As for caseins, their amino acids are "released" more slowly in the small intestine and their absorption is prolonged over several hours.
Why is protein absorption rates important in bodybuilding?
The speed of absorption of a protein is an essential criterion to take into account in bodybuilding. Indeed, depending on your needs and goals, one protein will be more suitable than the other.
For example, after training, your muscles were put to great use. So you need to recuperate and quickly supply your muscles with a large source of amino acids. In this case, it is ideal to take a quick protein: a whey or a whey isolate.
Alternatively, if your goal is to dry out, a slow protein like casein isolate will be ideal, as its prolonged absorption will provide you with an appetite suppressant while providing your muscles with the amino acids they need. However, taking a slowly absorbed protein is not recommended before training because it will strain your stomach during your workout.