Muscle mass and strength reduces with increasing age and affects the quality of life.
It’s a well known fact that the ingestion of animal-based protein sources such as dairy and meat are more potent in terms of stimulating muscle protein synthesis compared with plant-based proteins. Animal proteins, whey and casein have high content of essential amino acids and stimulate muscle protein synthesis.
Muscle bulk: Balance between protein synthesis and breakdown.
Muscle bulk is regulated by the balance between muscle protein synthesis and muscle protein breakdown. Regular exercises and consumption of diet rich in proteins stimulates muscle protein synthesis and thereby muscle mass. This response to protein intake is dependent on the amount, type and source of dietary protein.
Plant based protein as alternative to animal protein?
Of the total dietary protein consumed worldwide plant based sources constitute about 60%. With growing population; plant-based proteins provide sustainability with increasing global demand over animal-derived proteins.
Plant based proteins have lower amount of essential amino acid especially leucine. Co-ingesting leucine with a plant-based protein will likely enhance the muscle protein synthesis. Few plant-based proteins are also low in amino acid lysine and/or methionine. Eating combination of two or more plant based protein will help to overcome deficiency of these individual amino acids e.g. maize/soyabean, rice/soyabean and rice/pea. But effect of these strategies on increasing muscle protein synthesis is not proven scientifically.
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