An adequate protein intake is crucial for the body as it supports muscle development, tissue repair and immune function. In this article, we will compare hemp protein vs. pea protein, two very popular plant-based proteins. Hemp protein comes from the seeds of the hemp plant, also known as Cannabis sativa. It is a very popular choice of protein due to its rich nutritional profile, making it an outstanding choice for vegans and vegetarians.
Pea protein is also a high-quality protein extracted from yellow peas. These have a high amino acid content which has a crucial role in muscle repair and growth, which makes it a desired choice for vegans and vegetarians and people with food allergies and sensitivities due to its hypoallergenic profile.
If we compare the protein content between hemp protein vs. pea protein, you will see that both are high-quality plant-based protein sources. In the case of hemp protein, a 30-gram serving will usually contain around 20-25 grams of protein. On the other hand, with a slightly lower content per serving, pea protein will contain between 15 and 20 grams of protein per 30-gram serving.
Hemp protein vs. pea protein have distinct amino acid profiles. Hemp protein is considered a complete protein due to containing nine essential amino acids in great quantities. It also contains healthy fatty acids which are beneficial for overall health. Pea protein is slightly different, as it does not have all nine amino acids. However, it is abundant in lysine which is less common in other plant-based proteins.
Both hemp and pea proteins are highly digestible. Hemp protein has a higher fiber content than pea protein, which makes it great for gut health and digestion in general. Pea protein is also very easily digestible and considered a hypoallergenic source of protein which makes it suitable for people with food sensitivities. Pea protein is less likely to cause any discomfort or adverse reaction.
If you are comparing hemp protein vs. pea protein, you should know that they both offer great nutritional benefits. On the one hand, hemp protein is a complete protein which has amino acids, omega-3 and omega-6 healthy fats that promote heart and cognitive health, and due to their fiber content, they support gut health and digestion. Although pea protein is not a complete protein, it is highly nutritional, digestible and hypoallergenic, supporting muscle growth and overall nutrition.
Both types of protein have a rather low environmental impact compared to other sources of protein. Hemp is well-known for requiring little water and less pesticides than other crops, making it more sustainable. Pea protein production is also an environmentally friendly product, as peas enrich the soil during cultivation, lessening the need for synthetic fertilizers.
If you compare the taste and texture of hemp protein vs. pea protein, you will find some differences. Mainly, pea protein has a more neutral or mild taste compared to hemp protein. Hemp protein has a distinct earthy or nutty flavor which may not be appealing to everyone and has a more robust texture. Pea protein is smoother and less gritty and is nearly impossible to taste when blended in different preparations.
When comparing the allergenicity of hemp protein vs. pea protein, you will find that overall, both proteins are safe choices which most people with allergies can consume. Pea protein is well regarded for its low allergenicity. Hemp is also rarely associated with allergies but individual reactions to either protein can occur. Make sure to speak to your doctor if you have any questions about allergenicity.