Protein from potatoes stimulates muscle growth
The possibilities for companies that market environmentally friendly and sustainably produced protein supplements have recently increased again. According to a human study published by Canadian sports scientists at McMaster University in Nutrients, protein from potatoes can stimulate muscle growth. The Canadian study suggests that potato protein may be of interest to people who want to improve the quality of their diet, but also to athletes.
The Canadians divided 24 healthy women aged 18-29 into 2 groups. One group - the control group - ate 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day during the 2 weeks that the experiment took. Those proteins came from regular foods. [CON]
The women in the experimental group received the same amount of protein through their regular diet. But they also ate a pudding twice a day that contained 25 grams of potato protein. So throughout the day the women consumed 50 grams of potato protein. In total, these women consumed 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight daily. [PP]
The potato protein that the researchers used is on the market as Solanic. [Link] Solanic is a product of Avebe, a Dutch company. [avebe.nl]
Potato protein has a particularly high viscosity, and is therefore not suitable for making shakes. They become too viscous. Therefore, the researchers used pudding.
The women in the control group received placebo pudding without potato protein.
The researchers had the women train one of their legs on a leg extension and a leg press machine 3 times a week. The women trained lightly, with 30 percent of the load with which they could just make 1 rep.
The researchers measured how much protein the women's leg muscles made before they got pudding and before they trained [Baseline], after they got pudding but didn't train yet [Rest], and after they got pudding and trained [Exercise].
Potato protein increased the production of muscle protein [MPS] at rest, the figure below shows. Training, however, increased production even more. Training plus potato protein increased muscle protein production a little more, but it is clear that training outweighs supplementation.
"We report, for the first time, that the ingestion of potato protein isolate resulted in increased rates of muscle protein synthesis when consumed at levels twice the recommended daily amount for protein in healthy young women", summarize the Canadians.
"Our findings highlight that potato protein is effective in stimulating rates of muscle protein synthesis with supplementation alone and that this effect is enhanced when feeding with potato protein isolate is combined with resistance exercise."
More and more research is being conducted into the effects of vegetable proteins on muscles. This is because global agriculture is increasingly struggling to produce sufficient animal protein, while protein intake continues to increase steadily. Because vegetable proteins are often less harmful to the environment, we are positive about this study.
But it is a sponsored study, we must confess. The researchers were funded by the Alliance for Potato Research & Education, [apre.org] "a not-for-profit organization funded by the potato industry, including potato growers and potato food manufacturers".
Would there ever be a study comparing the effect of good old whey with that of potato protein?
Nutrients. 2020 Apr 27;12(5):E1235.
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