Why rice protein?

@rob - Why did you go from whey protein to rice protein?

  • Probably cheaper than whey isolate, yet not worse.
  • Lactose free, no matter what.
  • Vegan (for some it’s a pro, personally I don’t care)
  • It’s not dependent on cows. One can easily imagine that’d be a problem with really-large-scale production.

Maybe there are more pros.

I have problems digesting even whey isolate. I have very minor problems with milk, but for some reason whey isolate causes digestive issues. (I have tried 2 different brands of isolate, same effect). Sucks because whey tastes a whole lt nicer than the alternatives.

My guess is (as rice is not hugely cheaper than whey) far less allergy / intolerance issues, and it is going to sell more if pure vegan too.

Brown rice is an incomplete protein. To get it to be as good as whey, you have to fortify it with additional amino acids, and most cheaper supplements use low-quality amino acids that don’t absorb well. Looking on Amazon, most brown rice protein is about the price of a good whey isolate.

Check out http://discourse.soylent.me/t/new-soylent-feedback-category/3670/4

I’m also concerned about the rice protein.
I don’t have my info in front of me, but when I get home I will take a look at the AA profile to see how well it stacks up. I am concerned that it does not have a proper profile and something else will need to be supplemented in. But of course that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

By the way I have a whey / rice protein blend that I am using now.

Alright, so it appears that rice protein isn’t quite complete.
Well at least the numbers from here
show that it is low in:

You would need to supplement something else in. The lysine content is only about half of what is required.

It’s also pretty low in Leucine. My whey is 105mg per gram. That rice protein is only 66.5mg per gram.

You know, it just occurred to me what an awful job you guys have. Every other health food, they just put ridiculous claims on the label and people go around saying “Brawndo has what plants crave! It says so right here!” With soylent, people are comparing amino acid levels to see if they stack up.

You have my sympathies = )


That’s the difference between dealing with techies and dealing with vegans, LOL. It’s a far more demanding market!


I created a spreadsheet comparing rice vs whey vs pea protein.

Surprisingly, rice actually is a complete protein and is only slightly worse than whey in terms of delivering Essential amino acids. Whey Isolate Requires 63 grams to provide RDA while Rice requires 67 grams, and pea requires 91.5 grams.

You can see the spreadsheet here. (dropbox link)

Further, by an overall (crude) metric looking at ratios of whey and rice vs Human breast milk (I assume as close to perfect as you’re going to get). Rice is actually (ever so slightly) better than Whey. But, I’d take that conclusion with a grain of salt.

Lastly, Whey has the smallest deviance from human breast milk in terms of amino acid ratios to human breast milk.

I think Rice should be fine, but whey would be a little better.


I took a look at your spreadsheet while I was at work, and I had a hard time understanding it. Sorry. I did only look at it for a minute or two.

Before when I complained about the rice protein, I only looked at the AA profile of the rice protein. I did not compare it with whey or pea AA profiles. So this time I rechecked my numbers using the numbers from the protein that I buy at TrueNutrition.

According to my new numbers these are the worst case AA for each of the proteins:
Rice protein is short in Lysine. You would need to consume about 1.5 grams of rice protein to get a complete protein based on the Lysine discrepancy.

Whey protein is short in Phenylalanine and Tyrosine. You would need to consume about 1.65 grams of whey protein to get a complete protein based on the Phenylalanine and Tyrosine discrepancy.

Pea protein is short in Methionine and Cystine. You would need to consume about 3.05 grams of pea protein to get a complete protein based on the Methionine and Cystine.

Without going deeper into each AA and what they do, I stand corrected. RIce protein is more of a complete protein than what whey protein is. Although based on the AA profile I think that whey protein is more suited to building muscle based on the Leucine content.

Thanks for correcting me. I was unfairly judging the rice protein as I wasn’t looking at all of the numbers.

Based on this new information that I have gleaned from this exercise, I think that I will be slightly adjusting my custom protein to better balance my AA profile to fit my needs. It will still mainly be whey protein, but I will be increasing my pea and rice protein to compensate for the Phenylalanine and Tyrosine.

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Just got my rice protein, and yeh it seems pea and hemp are the worst offenders taste wise, but rice is very very chalky, how is this being disguised?

I’m puzzled by this, SF. Rice ought not to be chalky – unless that, too, is uncooked? Gad, d’you suppose the pea is also uncooked? It was my understanding that the edible legumes are edible only when cooked. Looks like our good old capitalist system is up to its usual tricks. Caveat emptor.

I often dump a tablespoon of hulled hempseed into my morning hot cereal and have never noticed any bad taste.

I’m only now fully realising just how lucky I’ve been with my own soylent formulation. Mine actually tastes good, and I have every confidence that I can easily vary the flavour (if I should get bored with it as it now tastes) in other directions with an equally tasty result without resorting to “artificial flavour and colouring” (as they say in the Big Food Bidness).

EDIT: (And if I want to include rice, I can do so – grind it to flour in the VitaMix, soak it with yoghourt whey and buckwheat, then cook it – and mine won’t taste the least bit chalky, of that I’m sure.)

What are you using for protein in your mix Jeffrey? - couldn’t find your thread (got a link?).

With rice it isn’t even so much the taste itself (which is unsurprisingly mildly rice like ;))- its the chalky texture and aftertaste. I can tolerate it (mixed with another protein), but ‘delicious’ it aint. It seems if you have issues with milk, you are somewhat screwed in the taste dept.

My protein comes mostly from whole dried eggs, SF, with an assist from nonfat dry milk, peanut powder, and three different whole grains. But my soylent is admittedly a horse of another colour, not like the norm here. Link here It’s still something of a WIP; I haven’t yet spent the time to balance it off very finely because I just don’t use it as a fulltime thing, only a convenience or adjunct, when I’ve got a long day of driving or I feel too tired or dispirited to bother with cooking. I should give it a fulltime trial for a week or two one of these days – once all those lovely wild greens out there dry up, perhaps! Right now I can’t let them go to waste. :wink:

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According to this, the PDCAAS of rice is only .55, while whey, casein, and soy are all 1. I think the reason here is that rice protein is less bioavailable so even though on paper it looks pretty good, not nearly all of the AA are absorbed.

Whey is not mentioned in that document at all.

sorry, the PDCAAS for whey etc is here on page 3

Thanks Jeffrey :slight_smile: - Egg, of course, nice. Wasn’t even aware peanut butter powder existed :wink: - after I have finished of my current mountain of protein powder I will experiment.