Acid-active proteases to optimize dietary protein digestibility: a step towards sustainable nutrition

Introduction: Historically, prioritizing abundant food production often resulted in overlooking nutrient quality and bioavailability, however, environmental concerns have now propelled sustainable nutrition and health efficacy to the forefront of global attention. In fact, increasing demand for protein is the major challenge facing the food system in the 21st century with an estimation that 70% more food is needed by 2050. This shift has spurred interest in plant-based proteins for their sustainability and health benefits, but most alternative sources of protein are poorly digestible. There are two approaches to solve digestibility: improve the digestibility of food proteins or improve the digestive capacity of consumers. Enhancing nutrient digestibility and bioavailability across diverse protein sources is crucial, with proteases presenting a promising avenue. Research, inspired by the proteases of human breast milk, has demonstrated that exogenous microbial proteases can activate within the human digestive tract and substantially increase the digestion of targeted proteins that are otherwise difficult to fully digest.

Breakdown of proteins by brand, manufacturer, and % protein by weight.

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Artificial intelligence for food and health
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