Plant-based ‘meat’ protein may be less well absorbed by the body than chicken breast protein

The protein present in meat alternate options constituted of wheat and soy could also be much less absorbed by the small gut into the bloodstream than the protein in hen breasts

Well being


June 22, 2022

In a lab experiment, intestinal cells absorbed less protein in a meat substitute (left) than protein in chicken breast (right)

In a laboratory experiment, intestinal cells didn’t take up proteins from a meat substitute (left) and proteins from hen breast (proper) didn’t.

Tailored from Journal of Agricultural and Meals Chemistry 2022

Dietary protein from plant-based meat alternate options is probably not absorbed in addition to protein from hen breast.

“This work opens a door to the dietary properties of plant-based meat alternate options,” he says. Da Chen Y Osvaldo Campanella, who led the analysis at The Ohio State College. Chen now works on the College of Idaho.

Of their lab experiment, Chen, Campanella and their colleagues grew a layer of human intestinal cells on scaffolds that divided a number of dishes into two chambers. They then used enzymes from the abdomen and small gut to digest a plant-based meat different and a cooked hen breast, earlier than including every digested product to a chamber on every plate.

Subsequent, the staff measured the quantity of protein fragments, or peptides, that handed by means of the intestinal cell layer to achieve the other chamber in every dish, representing protein absorption by means of the intestine.

Inside 4 hours of being added to the dish, which is the longest typical transit time for meals within the small gut, about 2 p.c much less protein from the plant-based meat different had transferred to by means of intestinal cells, in comparison with hen protein. breast. Though it is a small share distinction, statistical evaluation means that this consequence was not an opportunity discovering.

Subsequently, consuming meat alternate options might lead to much less protein being absorbed by means of the intestinal wall into the bloodstream. The researchers didn’t check whether or not this decreased absorption results in protein deficiency.

Within the second a part of the experiment, the staff analyzed peptides from digested meals and located that protein fragments from hen breast are smaller and extra soluble in water than meat-alternative peptides.

“It has been proven that peptides of smaller measurement and bigger [solubility] can switch extra simply by means of [these gut] cells,” say Campanella and Chen.

Nevertheless, the lab mannequin is a extremely simplified model of the gut that lacks the mucous lining discovered within the physique, they are saying.

“Within the gut, peptides have to cross by means of a layer of mucus… which serves as a filter… earlier than reaching the cells of the intestinal epithelium. [We tested protein absorption] disregarding the mucus layer,” says the couple.

Protein absorption also can differ within the giant gut, the place meals can stay for as much as 24 hours, a time frame that was not evaluated within the experiment.

Moreover, protein absorption from plant-based meat alternate options and meats apart from hen breast will depend on their particular person protein composition and processing.

Regardless of their outcomes, the staff maintains that plant-based meat alternate options are most likely a great supply of protein.

“Though plant-based meat alternate options had much less absorbed peptides, they nonetheless present a great amino acid profile and may very well be an acceptable addition to a well-balanced food regimen,” say Campanella and Chen.

Researchers are actually working to enhance the diet absorbed from plant-based meat alternate options.

“Plant-based meals have to be rigorously designed to make sure they’ve comparable or higher dietary profiles than animal-based meals,” he says. David Julian McClements on the College of Massachusetts Amherst.

Journal Reference: Journal of Meals and Agricultural Chemistry , DOI: doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.2c01711

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