Canola’s Protein Quality Similar to Soy

February 7, 2013

Human amino acid responses from soy and canola protein appear comparable.

Canola oil’s reputation as a healthy vegetable oil is growing. Last month, FDA approved canola oil for infant formulas because of the oil’s healthy fat profile. Now, research suggests that canola’s protein quality is comparable to that of soy.

In what they say is the first human study on canola protein in humans, researchers at the University of Jena in Germany assigned 28 volunteers to consume 30 g of canola protein isolate, canola protein hydrolysate, or soy protein isolate in crossover fashion. Hourly blood samples, taken up to eight hours post-consumption, would reveal any changes in amino acid responses from the interventions.

The canola protein hydrolysate yielded a quicker amino acid response than the other proteins, but each protein offered similar influence by the eighth and final hour. Lead researcher Gerhard Jahreis, PhD, concluded “there is no difference in the bioavailability between these two protein sources [canola and soy].”

Canola oil is allowed for food use in Europe, but the researchers note that the ingredient lacks a novel food registration for the European Union.

This study comparing canola protein to soy protein is published in Clinical Nutrition.