As New Year is the time for resolutions, you might also be thinking about losing a few pounds in the coming year. Many people are now switching to high protein diets for weight loss and many other benefits. Studies show that high protein diets can decrease hunger cravings and increase satiety. High protein diets have become popular recently as many studies show that these diets can help in weight loss without cutting down on calorie intake. In addition, high protein diets are shown to reduce body fat, especially around the waist.
Diets high in protein can promote weight loss for a number of reasons. Some of these are:
- Decrease Cravings: Diets that are high in protein can help reduce food cravings, especially the desire to snack at night.
- Increase Satiety: Proteins are highly satiating and can keep you full for longer times, resulting in a reduction in the intake of calories.
- Improve Calorie Burning: Increasing the intake of protein has been shown to have an increased thermic effect.
- Reduce Hunger Hormones: Increased protein intake can reduce the levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin in the body.
These are some of the important ways in which a high protein diet can promote weight loss. Now that you are convinced that a high protein diet can help lose weight, let us come to our question. Can plant-based food rich in protein help lose weight? The short answer is yes. Plant-based proteins are no different from any other proteins and can offer all the benefits of animal proteins, in terms of weight loss. Let us delve more into the details.
Soy Protein Can Help In Weight Loss
Soy protein is a very popular plant-based protein that is obtained from soybeans. When compared to many other plant-based proteins, soy protein has all the nine essential amino acids. Moreover, it contains soy isoflavones that are antioxidants present in soy protein that can provide many health benefits.
In the case of soy protein and weight loss, scientific evidence is promising. Some of the studies suggest that consuming soy protein can promote weight loss. For instance, postmenopausal women who consumed soy isoflavone supplements regularly reported a loss in their weight when compared to other women who did not take these supplements. Another study that was conducted among diabetic patients who were obese revealed that a diet including soy proteins resulted in more weight loss when compared to other standard weight-loss diets.
Yet another study found that soy protein supplements can be as effective as other proteins in terms of weight loss. In the study, obese adults were made to have weight loss diet supplements with egg and whey protein or soy protein. The result showed that both groups lost comparable amounts of weight. From the results of all these studies, we can safely assume that soy protein can be beneficial in weight loss.
Rice Protein Can Improve Body Composition
Rice protein is a plant-based protein that is an incomplete protein. It is considered an incomplete protein because of the low levels of lysine, which is an essential amino acid. Oftentimes, rice protein is mixed with pea protein to increase the amino acid profile. There are only a few studies on rice protein and one study that was conducted among young males showed that having rice protein supplements for eight weeks increased the lean muscle mass and decreased the fat mass. However, more research is necessary to find out the exact role of rice protein in weight loss.
Pea Proteins Is Also Beneficial
Pea protein is a rather new plant-based protein that is made from split peas. Pea protein can be considered a complete protein as it has all the nine essential amino acids. Studies show that having pea proteins can increase the feeling of fullness. An animal study conducted on rats showed that the absorption rate of pea protein is low when compared to animal proteins like whey protein. Moreover, the pea protein is good at boosting the levels of satiety.
Another study found that having 20 gms of pea protein half an hour before a meal increased the satiety levels and decreased the intake of calories. However, the timing can be an important factor for the effects. This is because pea protein when taken just before the meals had little to no impact on the intake of food.
Apart from increased satiety, pea protein can have beneficial effects on body composition. It was found in a study that men who consumed about fifty grams of pea protein daily for twelve weeks showed an increase in lean muscle mass. The results of the study were similar to those having the same amount of whey protein.
The pieces of evidence shared above are enough to prove that plant-based protein can promote weight loss. It is high time that you add more protein to your plant-based food preparation to reach your weight loss goals.