(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists from the University of Exeter found that mycoprotein was an excellent “building material” for muscle growth – better than milk protein. An article about this is published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The results of the work show that mycoprotein can be used as a good source of protein in a flexible diet that requires alternative proteins in sufficient quantities: for example, in athletes with metabolic problems.
Mycoproteins are products made from fungal mycelium (usually a strain of soil Fusarium graminearum) that have undergone special processing and fermentation. They are relatively easy to grow, have a fibrous structure resembling muscle fibers of edible tissues of animal origin, and when grown and made less harmful to the environment than beef cattle.
The authors of the work conducted a study for which they attracted 20 healthy young athletes. Scientists tested how the two types of proteins were absorbed and promoted muscle growth when taken immediately after weight training.
It turned out that those who took milk protein, muscle growth rates increased by an average of 60%, and those who took a meat substitute based on mycoprotein more than doubled. This shows that mycoprotein can be an effective source of protein to stimulate muscle growth.
Muscle building rates were measured within hours of protein intake. Animal proteins, such as milk, provide an excellent source of muscle growth, and therefore become a benchmark for comparing the success of potential alternative protein sources.
The use of proteins causes an increase in the number of amino acids – their “building blocks” – in the bloodstream. Muscles “take” these free amino acids and use them to build new cells stimulated by physical activity.
According to the authors of the work, such alternative proteins as mycoprotein can be very useful for people who want to train or gain muscle mass, recovering from a forced state of immobility, but do not want or cannot use animal proteins.
“Our data show that mycoprotein can stimulate muscle growth within a few hours after training compared to a typical animal comparator protein (milk protein) – and we look forward to whether these mechanistic results can lead to results in longer studies of training for different samples, ”says Benjamin Wall, assistant professor of nutritional physiology at the University of Exeter.
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