July 21, 2015

Algae, Quinoa, Legumes - Alternative Protein Choices

The vegans are pushing hard to eliminate meat from our diets. The latest is from a July 12th presentation at IFT15: Where Science Feeds Innovation hosted by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) in Chicago.

But knowing the food industry, I will not be surprised if they mess this up by putting too many chemicals in the food that will erase any good that the new foods can garner.

Algae, quinoa and pulses (legumes) are considered by some food technologists to be the best protein sources and strong alternatives to slow meat consumption, reduce food waste, and help feed the world’s growing population.

Algae: This is a new vegan source of protein. It contains 63 percent protein, 15 percent fiber, 11 percent lipids, 4 percent carbohydrates, 4 percent micronutrients and 3 percent moisture. It is said to be easily digested and considered heart healthy. It’s found in the ingredient lists of some protein shakes, crackers or bars, cereals, sauces, dressings and breads.

There are thousands of algae strains, which can be melded in a variety of produces and consumers seem anxious to learn about algae.

Quinoa (keen-OH-wa): This is a centuries-old “poor man’s” crop grown in the High Andes Mountains of Bolivia and Peru, which continues to grow in popularity. There are more than 1,400 quinoa products currently on the market. It is a nutritious, sustainable food and protein source.

Pulses: Pulses, also known as legumes, beans, chickpeas and lentils, are also high in protein, vegetarian, gluten-free, non-allergenic, non-GMO and sustainable.

The important thing about all three is the lack of GMO at present and this appeals to many people that don't trust our USDA when the department claims there is no health risk posed by GMOs.

My concern is the mess Big Food will make of the products and add too many chemicals and sugar to the products before they read the store shelves.

Founded in 1939, the Institute of Food Technologists is committed to advancing the science of food. Our non-profit scientific society—more than 17,000 members from more than 95 countries—brings together food scientists, technologists and related professionals from academia, government, and industry. For more information, please visit ift.org.

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