Pea protein is a plant-based protein that is extracted from yellow split peas. It is obtained by drying and grinding the peas into a fine flour, mixing it with water, and removing the fiber and starch. This process leaves the protein, along with vitamins and minerals.
Many people don’t know it, but there is a lot of protein packed in a pea. It’s a fact the fitness and health food industry has keyed into, and they’ve developed a product to remove the maximum amount of beneficial protein out of the pea’s small package.
Here is a deeper look into this new nutritional favorite, its dietary considerations, its many benefits, and how it compares to different types of proteins.
Protein Concentrate vs Isolate
Protein isolates contain a higher amount of protein per serving than concentrates. Some protein isolates are made up of as much as 90% protein, but most have around 80%. This may be beneficial for people who are restricting their calorie intake. Isolates also have a higher insulin response and are absorbed into the body much faster than concentrates.
However, protein isolates are heavily processed, which causes them to lose some of the healthy compounds found in concentrates. On the other hand, protein isolates have less carbohydrates, fat, and lactose.
Protein concentrate is more popular due to the fact that it is typically less expensive. When choosing a protein product, it’s important to consider your goals, budget, and any allergies.
Key Takeaways When Choosing a Protein Powder
If you want a general protein supplement that is less expensive, choose a concentrate. If you want a pure, rapidly absorbing protein supplement and aren’t concerned about price, choose a pea protein isolate.
While whole-food proteins generally provide greater nutrients than powders, protein powder supplements can still hold a firm place in your daily diet. Not only are they simple and convenient to eat, but they can give you the additional protein boost you need in order to feel your best and reach your fitness goals. Along with a nearly complete amino acid profile, just one 30-gram serving of pea protein isolate contains a whopping 23 grams of protein.
Pea protein is vegetarian-friendly, vegan-friendly, dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free, and usually GMO-free. There have been no proven short- or long-term side effects from taking pea protein powder.
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