Pea vs. Rice Protein: Which Protein is Best for You?
If you’re looking to add a vegan protein supplement to your diet, you may want to do a little research before purchasing a protein powder to ensure the products you select fit your dietary needs and lifestyle. Pea protein (found in Nuzest products) and rice protein are two popular high-protein plant-based powders on the market. Learning more about how pea protein and rice protein compare can help you determine which protein powder is most suitable for your needs.
What is Rice Protein?
Most of us think of rice as a food rich in carbohydrates. However, rice also contains a considerable amount of vegan and gluten-free protein.
Rice protein is typically made by treating brown rice with select enzymes that cause the carbohydrates and protein to separate. The protein can be isolated, resulting in a high quality plant-based protein powder.
What about Pea Protein?
Pea protein, the protein found in Clean Lean Protein and the entire product line by Nuzest, is harvested from split peas. Pea Protein is made by extracting the soluble pea protein from yellow split peas. It is highly bioavailable and easy to digest, meaning it’s easy for your body to make the most of the protein and nutrients available. You can read more about pea protein here.
How Do Rice and Pea Protein Compare, Nutritionally?
Both rice and pea protein contain about 15-22 grams of protein per 100-calorie serving. They are both low in carbohydrates and fat. Both pea and rice proteins are allergy-friendly, gluten-free, and easy to digest and suitable for a vegetarians, vegans, athletes, and gluten-free individuals (including those with Celiac Disease).
Rice protein is high in many essential amino acids, including cysteine and methionine, but is low in lysine. Pea protein, on the other hand, is lysine rich and contains an impressive amount of branched chain amino acids.
Pea protein offers a complete range of amino acids, but is low in one amino acid, methionine, that is easily supplemented from a variety of other plant-based foods including, rice, soybeans, sunflower seeds, oats, and many nuts. Clean Lean Protein, a high-quality, premium golden pea protein isolate is a 100% vegan protein that contains all the essential amino acids.
Often times, pea and rice protein are paired together to create full amino acid plant-based protein profiles.
Rice protein powder also contains a significant amount of iron, vitamin C, and a small amount of calcium. Pea protein is also rich in iron, and contains a small amount of calcium.
When made from sprouted whole grain brown rice (which many on the market are), rice protein also offers the benefits of sprouted grains, including an increase in bioavailability of vitamins, fiber, folate, and amino acids.
Rice also contains an array of antioxidants, including phenolic acids, flavonoids, anthocyanins, among others. Such antioxidants can promote health by protecting cells from damaging free radicals and reactive oxygen species.
How Do They Taste?
Many find rice protein powder to have a distinct taste. Some enjoy the flavor, while others may find it unpleasant. Pea protein, on the other hand, is generally recognized for its neutral taste and easy blendability.
What Do I Chose?
Both rice and pea proteins offer their own unique health and consumption benefits and are great high-protein powders. And both can be incorporated as a healthful source of plant-based protein in your diet. Select the protein that fits your lifestyle, dietary preferences, and taste buds, and you’ll be on your way to happy protein-powdered snacking.