Rapeseed May Be the Best Source of Plant-Based Protein

Move over soy, rapeseed may be the best plant protein.

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Nutrition scientists at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), published a preliminary study in Nutrients that found that rapeseed protein consumption may have comparable beneficial effects on the human metabolism as soy protein—and the glucose metabolism and satiety were even better. It's possible that, if this is the case, rapeseed may even replace soy as the go-to protein in plant-based diets because rapeseed proteins can be obtained from the by-products of rapeseed oil production. 

For this study, 20 participants were asked to document their diets for a few days. They were then invited to eat a specifically prepared meal on three separate days: noodles with tomato sauce that either contained no additional protein, or was enriched with soy or rapeseed protein. After the meal, blood was regularly drawn from the participants over a six-hour period.

"The rapeseed protein induced comparable effects on metabolic parameters and cardiovascular risk factors as soy protein. Rapeseed even produced a slightly more beneficial insulin response in the body," said MLU nutritionist Christin Volk. "Rapeseed appears to be a valuable alternative to soy in the human diet." 

Although the study was small and more research is needed, it's safe to say that plant-based diets would benefit from adding rapeseed to the rotation. 

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