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Nature and origin of casein

Casein is a protein. It is extracted from the proteins of the milk: in the milk, casein is structured in voluminous globules. These globules are mainly responsible for the white colour of the milk. According to various species, the casein amount within the total proteins of the milk varies. (Others proteins of the milk are albumins and globulins.)

Species casein (% of total proteins)
Cow 80
Bitch 50
Queen 50
Woman 20

The amount of casein in the milk varies according to the quality of the female’s nutrition. As the growth of the young animal relies upon a good composition of the milk, it confirms the importance of ensuring a high-quality diet for lactating females.

In a acidified environment, casein precipitates. This physical property is used to extract casein from milk on an industrial scale. Then, casein is separated from other components of the milk that could be harmful to the digestive tolerance. This is the case of the main sugar of the milk, the lactose. Commercially, one speaks about sodium caseinate, which is a soluble form of casein.

Nutritional interests of caseinate

Caseinate is an extremely concentrated source of proteins (86 %).

Its digestibility is exceptional (= 99 %). The products of its digestion are undispensable amino-acids for the growth, hair shine, muscular tone, immunitary defence of the body…

Casein brings a lot of undispensable amino-acids; one calls high biologival value such a interesting amino-acid composition. It means that the body can easily use the amino-acids provided by the casein. Casein contents in some undispensable amino-acids (leucine, isoleucine, lysine…) are even superior to egg protein ones, however considered as a protein reference.

Practical using of casein

Taking into account its quality and its cost, the casein is used in products aiming at covering requirements of very sensitive individuals: those who require a top-quality diet. Its is incorporated in infant diets, dietetic products for both human people and animals, pharmacological preparations…

The research is also focused on some of its specific properties: casein could be used for fighting against obesity, it could help preventing bone loss, or participating to the prevention of dental cavities, by promoting the re-mineralization of the tooth enamel…

Physical properties of casein make it also usable in the manufacturing of adhesive products, textile-fabrics, cosmetics…


Casein is one of the best available sources of proteins. However, its cost (almost double than egg powder, and almost 10 times more than poultry meat meals), limits its incorporation. Then, it is reserved only to the best-quality Royal Canin products, such as the ones for very sensitive animals: Starter, Junior products, Adult 2 products, and Canistar/Felistar dietetic ranges.

Donated by the Borg Cardona and Co. Ltd. visit Borg Cardona website

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