Oryzatein® Rice Protein is as Good as Whey for Muscle Building and Aiding Exercise Recovery

Full Manuscript Published June 2013 – Nutrition Journal 


Consumption of moderate amounts of animal-derived protein has been shown to differently influence muscle hypertrophy during resistance training when compared with isonitrogenous and isocaloric amounts of plant-based protein.  The purpose of the study was to evaluate perceived recovery and changes in body composition when supplementing with rice protein isolate or whey protein isolate following periodized resistance-training.


24 college-aged, resistance trained males were recruited for this study. Subjects were randomly and equally divided into two groups, to either consume 48 grams of rice protein isolate (RPI) or whey protein isolate (WPI) on training days. Subjects trained 3 days per week for 8 weeks as a part of a daily undulating periodized resistance-training program. The rice and whey protein supplements were isocaloric and isonitrogenous, and they were consumed immediately following exercise.  Ratings of perceived recovery, soreness, and readiness to train were recorded prior to and following the first training session. Ultrasonography determined muscle thickness, dual emission x-ray absorptiometry, and bench press and leg press strength were recorded during weeks 0, 4, and 8.


No significant differences were present in psychological scores of perceived recovery, soreness, or readiness to train. There were significant differences within rice and whey groups for changes in lean body mass, muscle mass, strength and power from 0 to 8 weeks. However, there were no significant differences between groups.


Oryzatein® rice protein may serve as a 1:1 replacement for whey protein in products intended to build muscle, enhance performance or aid in exercise recovery.


Rice protein isolate administration post resistance exercise decreased fat-mass and increased lean body mass, skeletal muscle hypertrophy, power and strength comparable to whey protein isolate. Despite being an incomplete protein, rice protein appears to be equally as effective as whey in trained athletes consuming a balanced omnivorous diet.