Pea Protein: Healthy alternative to Soy Protein

July 15, 2021

Pea Protein is the new star kid on the block. It belongs to the plant protein category like soy, which is anticipated to take the market by storm.
ETG Agro India, through its flagship enterprise ETC Agro Processing India Pvt. Ltd., commands leadership as one of the largest processors and marketers in pea protein. As the largest processing company, the company aims at building India as a protein-rich nation by making protein-rich pulses affordable, available & accessible to mass consumers.

Although, Pea Protein is still in the nascent stages to predict its performance and outcome in the protein supplement market. But the initial trends appear quite promising after the popularity of soy has decreased many folds.

Soy protein as such has always been controversial. There have always been many unanswered questions when it comes to soybean. Whether it is the genetically modified soybean crop or the mass amount of soy production in the US or the number of funded studies on soya, or the fact that China is now selling soy protein at dirt cheap prices. All of these questions with no concrete concluding answers have created quite a suspicion amongst consumers. Soya is also controversial because of the presence of soy isoflavones, known as phytoestrogens, and their effect on human hormones.

Phytoestrogens mimic the female hormone estrogen and may not be as suitable for males. Soy isoflavones may reduce thyroid gland function in people suffering from unmanaged hypothyroidism. Also, because of the presence of antinutrients in soybean, it is essential to adopt correct processing to deactivate them before consumption.
Whereas with the increasing popularity and perceived benefit of non-GMO vegan foods, many people are increasingly interested in pea protein. Since this clean eating wave is catching more attention, ‘Pea Protein’ is ought to have a brighter future as compared to its senior competitors. Pea protein is made by extracting protein from yellow peas. And it is almost a complete protein like soy, as it has all the essential amino acids (except being low in methionine).

Let’s see some classical comparison of Soy Protein with Pea Protein

Sr. No. Soy Protein Pea Protein
1. It has all the essential amino acids It has almost all amino acids except methionine
2. It contains anti-nutritional factors that can be deactivated by way of roasting, cooking, soaking, or sprouting It does not contain any anti-nutritional factors
3. Easy to digest provided the anti-nutritional factors are deactivated Easy to digest
4. Most soybeans are GMO varieties Pea protein is non-GMO
5. Soy protein has many controversial types of research, some stating benefits, and others quoting harmful effects Pea protein is safe for use. There is no purported health risk associated with the use of Pea protein
6. Soy protein contains isoflavones that may reduce thyroid gland function Pea protein can be safely used by hypothyroid patients
7. Soy protein may adversely impact male testosterone levels Pea protein does not impact any hormonal levels
8. It is believed that soy isoflavones reduce or raise the risk of certain cancers Pea is completely neutral and has no cancer risk.
9. Soy is one of the most common allergens Pea is allergen-free (hypoallergenic)
10. Soy has a good amount of essential amino acid Lysine, which is required to produce hormones, enzymes, collagen, and antibodies Pea has a good amount of semi-essential amino acid Arginine, which is the precursor for the synthesis of urea, nitric oxide, proline, glutamate, and creatine

Though it is still, in the introductory phase but these attributes of pea protein, ensure it will go a long way. This present clean image and health benefits make it a healthy alternative to soy protein.
Guess it is time for the yesteryears showstopper ‘Soy’ to move aside and make way for the latest blockbuster ‘Pea’!!!
Founded in 1967, ETG world has developed a diverse portfolio of expertise across multiple industries, encompassing Agricultural inputs, logistics, merchandising and processing, supply chain optimization, digital transformation and energy.