Bar with protein from insects no match for the shake with whey
Hesitantly, the products with protein from insects start to appear in the supermarkets, and it is expected that the market for these products will grow. But how good are these proteins actually for maintaining or building muscle mass? Danish sports scientists at the University of Aarhus have tried to answer this question with a human study.
The researchers divided 18 young men, who had been training with weights for quite some time, into 2 groups. For eight weeks they gave the one group an hour after their workouts a bar with 0.4 grams of insect protein per kilogram of body weight. On the training days the men got another bar just before they went to sleep. In this group the bars increased the daily protein intake from 1.6 to 2.3 grams per kilogram of body weight.
The researchers used insect protein from the Dutch company Proti-Farm. [protifarm.com] Proti-Farm did not sponsor the study.
The control group got bars with the same amount of energy. These bars contained carbohydrates.
The men who got insect protein lost a little bit of body fat, the men in the other group became slightly fatter. But the differences between the groups were not statistically significant.
The men who received the insect protein gained a kilogram of bone and fat free mass and became stronger, but so did the men in the control group. And here, too, the differences between the groups were not statistically significant
"With a growing world population and increased need for dietary protein, insect protein should be considered a valuable alternative to other dietary animal protein sources given its environmental profile", write the researchers.
"Future studies could examine whether insect protein supplementation in groups with a suboptimal protein intake would have a positive effect on skeletal muscle mass and function. For instance, a study on insect protein supplementation in an undernourished elderly population to attenuate loss in fat-and-bone- free mass would be of great interest. Furthermore, acute studies are needed to examine the AA content, absorption, and digestibility of insect protein sources in a human trial."
"In conclusion, we found that eight weeks of resistance training effectively promote gains in fat-and-bone-free mass and muscle strength in healthy young men with a habitual intake of protein corresponding to the general population of young Danish men. However, no difference in morphological adaptations such as hypertrophy or muscle strength was observed between supplementation groups, as hypothesized."
Eight weeks is not long for this type of research, especially if the subjects are already ingesting quite a lot of proteins before the supplementation begins. So you do not hear us yelling that insect protein is of no use to strength athletes. We suspend our judgment until there is a study that lasted six months or so.
Nutrients. 2018 Mar 10;10(3).
Insect protein just as good as soya protein, not as good as milk protein 08.08.2013
Nutrition & Strength Training