Egg Protein Supplements Review: - Bodybuilding Supplements

Egg Protein Supplements Review:

Egg Protein Supplements Review

Egg protein… still rocks!

Eggs: The Perfect Protein?

I was a kid when the American Egg Marketing Board came up with their classic slogan: “The Incredible, Edible Egg.” This pretty much says it all. While the debate over egg consumption and dietary cholesterol continues, there’s no debate over the value of egg protein in the human diet. Egg has been called “the perfect protein,” as it’s a rich source of the essential amino acids needed for human nutrition.

Note: There are 20 amino acids used to make up all the proteins present in the human body—including skeletal muscle proteins. These are divided into two groups: essential and non-essential. Essential amino acids are those that cannot be synthesized by the body, and must be consumed in the diet.

The Role of Eggs in BodyBuilding

Eggs have been a staple in bodybuilding diets from the beginning of the sport, so it’s only natural that egg protein supplements should have a place on the shelf alongside more heavily promoted alternatives like whey, casein and soy.

Egg protein is marketed in 3 forms: egg white powder, liquid egg whites, and whole egg powder.

Egg White Protein Powder

Egg whites are quite simple: they consist of protein, trace minerals and water. As such, elaborate, high-tech purification methods, such as ion-exchange or ultrafiltration, aren’t needed. Dehydration (typically by spray drying) is all that needs to be done to produce a virtually carb and fat-free protein powder.

Egg white isn’t quite as “perfect” as whole egg protein is: the high rating given to egg is based on the proteins in both the yolk and white.

But the biological value is still quite good, so this isn’t a concern.

100% egg white protein supplements can be purchased in bulk, unflavored; or in sweetened, flavored, instantized forms.

Egg white protein is also used as an ingredient in several blends, such as Syntha-6, and Optimum Pro Complex.

Liquid Egg Whites:

These are pasteurized and sold in bulk. You can buy them by the pint in many grocery stores, or by the gallon from suppliers such as Egg Whites International. Liquid egg whites can be consumed cooked, or straight from the container in smoothies or shakes.

Now, some people insist that egg whites shouldn’t be cooked at all, as cooking “destroys” the protein. This is based on a misconception, however. Heat does “denature” the protein—this is why egg whites solidify and become white when they’re cooked.

But this does not interfere with digestion and absorption…quite the opposite, in fact. Studies have shown that egg white protein is far more digestible cooked than raw. One study, for example, determined that 90.9% of the protein in cooked egg white was digested/absorbed, vs. only 51.3% for raw.

This may seem odd, as denaturation is often portrayed as “bad”—especially for whey protein powders. Why is this? It’s because some of the proteins in whey are are biologically active. The physiological function of a protein depends on its native, undenatured structure.

For example, lactoferrin has antimicrobial activity in the gut—if it’s denatured, this property is lost. But it can still serve as a source of amino acids for synthesizing new muscle proteins…your body can use it, denatured or not. So this is a non-issue for egg white, as none of the proteins are known to have any major health-promoting/disease-preventing effects.

Whole Egg Powder:

This is a less common option available from protein customizers, such as Protein Factory or True Nutrition; or from food ingredient retailers, such as Honeyville. These powders contain the same nutrients as whole eggs, including some extra fat calories, which make them attractive to hardgainers.

The Cholesterol “Issues”

However, one potential drawback is the cholesterol content: while the relationship between dietary cholesterol and serum cholesterol isn’t as firm as once thought, some people may still need to exercise caution. A related concern is cholesterol oxidation products (COPs), which are present in dried egg yolk. Also known as “oxysterols,” COPs can cause atherosclerosis in some animal models, although their role in human disease is still controversial.

The Bottom Line on Egg Protein Supplements

Overall, egg protein supplements offer more flexibility than intact, shell eggs do—they’re convenient, and the powders don’t require refrigeration. In addition, egg protein products are relatively inexpensive, low in calories and a great source of BCAAs. If you’d like to boost the protein in your diet, they’re definitely worth a look.

Additional egg protein supplements include: Rose Acre Farms dried egg whites, Eggology liquid egg whites, Universal Egg Pro Ultra, NOW Egg White Protein, MRM All Natural Egg White Protein and Optimum Nutrition 100% Egg Protein.

Author: elissa

Elissa is a former research associate with the University of California at Davis, and the author/co-author of over a dozen articles published in scientific journals. Currently a freelance writer and researcher, Elissa brings her multidisciplinary education and training to her writing on nutrition and supplements.

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