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Egg Protein Facts

Proteins act as building blocks of the human body. They provide energy for bodily functions and help repair cell damage. Natural sources of proteins and amino acids include milk and dairy products such as butter, cheese, cottage cheese, cream and yogurt. Egg protein also forms a vital source of proteins and nutrients essential for our body. In fact, both milk and eggs provide nine essential amino acids important for health.
Milk and egg protein may feature high on our list of health foods and high quality protein. However, studies reveal that these two foods also feature high on the list of allergy inducing foods. Some studies suggest that early exposure to these foods may reduce the risk of allergies.

Egg protein

Despite the fear of allergies, egg proteins in the form of egg protein powder or egg protein shake are popular among athletes and bodybuilders. Individuals aiming for weight loss also prefer consuming products with egg protein content. This provides the benefits of egg protein without the guilt of calories or cholesterol. Raw egg protein may be derived from both the egg white and the yolk. Many individuals avoid consuming the yolk fearing high amounts of cholesterol. While egg whites contain about eleven percent protein, egg yolks consist of almost seventeen percent protein. In case of weight loss, it is best to consume the egg protein from egg whites.

Experts often compare the biological value of egg protein (a measure used to determine efficiency of protein in growth process) with other forms of animal protein. Studies reveal the biological value of egg protein is as high as 93.7 percent. Of course, this measure may differ depending on how you consume your egg protein. Cooked or boiled egg protein tends to be more bio available than raw egg protein. Additionally, the fear of salmonella dictates individuals cook the eggs thoroughly before consumption.

Milk protein

Milk and dairy products are a natural and essential source of protein, especially for children and young adults. A variety of proteins and protein enzymes are unique to milk and not found in any other natural sources. Casein, a prominent milk protein is essential for growth and development of children. Other milk proteins provide benefits such as boosting the immune system, transporting nutrients and developing antibodies to fight diseases. For some individuals lactose intolerance may restrict their consumption of milk. This maybe caused by certain kinds of proteins in milk that are not easily digestible and trigger a reaction. However, many lactose free dairy and dairy products may benefit individuals who cannot consume milk. Individuals may also derive benefits of high quality proteins by consuming milk and egg protein powder that can be included into shakes or even baking processes.

The process of converting milk into cheese results in a viscous liquid ‘whey’. Milk coagulates to form cheese and leaves behind whey consisting of some minerals, lactose in water, and lactalbumin. Further heating processes can isolate whey protein into three major forms: concentrates, isolates, and hydrolysates. The cost and demand for whey proteins depend on their protein content and whether they are easy to digest. For example, hydrolysates are more expensive to procure. However, they are pre-digested and maybe less allergy inducing than other forms since they contain little to no lactose content. They maybe easily absorbed by the body but they are bitter in taste.

Egg protein vs. whey protein

While there is a considerable debate on egg protein vs. whey protein, the solution is not as simple. Most athletes use a combination of proteins to build and repair muscle. Whether you choose to use egg protein, casein (milk protein) or whey protein, each product presents unique benefits. You may choose between the slow absorbing casein protein and fast absorbing whey protein depending on your needs. For individuals suffering from any kind of dairy intolerance, egg protein is a safe alternative. Apart from being low in calories, egg protein products may provide fat and cholesterol free options.

Whey proteins are an excellent choice for individuals looking at an inexpensive option. Benefits include improved immune system function, muscle growth stimulation, and fast absorption for quick results. Ongoing research indicates that whey protein may also benefit in fighting signs of cancer and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Submitted on January 16, 2014