The power of proteins for patients

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Proteins are critical for patients to support their recovery, yet not all proteins are created equal.

04 April 2019

1 min

#Blog #Global #Medical Nutrition and Healthy Ageing

Proteins are the key building blocks for the body

Proteins are built of amino acids, which can be categorised as essential and non-essential. Non-essential amino acids can be synthesised by the body, however essential amino acids must be consumed through the diet. Most patients have elevated protein requirements, which are more easily reached through the consumption of complete proteins.

Dairy protein is complete protein, which provides a flexible base for further fortification which can assist with muscle maintenance, wound healing, and mobility.

Dietary proteins can be separated into two categories

Complete Proteins:

High-quality proteins which provide all of the essential amino acids at the levels required by the body. This includes common dairy ingredients such as milk protein concentrate, casein and whey protein, animal-based products and soy proteins.

Incomplete Proteins: 

These proteins do not contain are missing one or more essential amino acids and must be paired with other foods to create a complete protein. Some examples include pea protein, maize, wheat, rice protein, gelatin and collagen. 

Whey protein scores highly for patients

The Food and Agriculture Organization currently advises the DIAAS method, which assesses the availability and digestibility of essential amino acids in a protein.

Dairy proteins are the highest scoring proteins due to their high levels of essential amino acids, especially leucine which is an amino acid which triggers the stimulation of muscle protein synthesis (MPS).

A high-quality protein ingredient like whey protein isolate provides almost twice the available leucine compared to soy protein isolate, for every gram of protein consumed. 

NZMP Medical Nutrition

Faster digestion for quicker nutrition uptake

When consumed, casein will show a slow release of amino acids into the blood. Soy protein appears to result in an intermediate speed of digestion. Comparatively, whey protein is quickly broken down into amino acids which are available for use by the body.

The combination of fast absorption and high levels of essential amino acids make whey protein the gold standard.

Those reliant on nutrition to support their recovery require the highest quality protein available. Whey protein is increasingly recognised as the optimal protein source for patients.

This information is intended for B2B customers, suppliers and distributors, and is not intended as information for final consumers.