Too Much Seitan?

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LucyT
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Too Much Seitan?

Post by LucyT » Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:25 am

Hello! I am trying to utilize seitan into my dishes, as I find it tastes great as a ground meat substitute for things like tacos. I eat a variety of protein options, so I am not too worried. However, I make my own seitan and am just curious to know if there is any evidence stating that there is a limit to how much seitan/Vital wheat gluten you should consume in a day.

I often make a cup of VWG and turn it into seitan, and that generally lasts me a week for meals.

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Jebus
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Post by Jebus » Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:47 am

Unless you know for sure that you are gluten intolerant I see no problem with this. On the contrary, it should be very healthful.

I need to learn how to make seitan. Please share your recipe.
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Post by LucyT » Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:51 pm

I just make a simple Seitan. Make some broth with spices, add in about 1 cup of broth with 1 cup VWG. Then make a put with more broth, and bring it to a boil.

Then add the glob off VWG and boil for an hour.

I highly suggest you look up a better recipe than mine, lol. However, it works out well.

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Post by brimstoneSalad » Mon Jun 04, 2018 6:25 pm

I don't think there's any practical limit. The only problem would be if that was all you were eating.
LucyT wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:25 am
I often make a cup of VWG and turn it into seitan, and that generally lasts me a week for meals.
That sounds like a very modest amount. That would probably last me only a couple days at most, maybe just one day. I'm sure you can eat more than that if you like it. :)

To mix up your protein sources, you can also mix in unflavored protein powder (like pea, which compliments the wheat amino acids well) with the VWG. Start with a little, like 20% pea protein and 80% VWG and see if you like the texture still (it changes it a little bit). Up to 50% pea protein should still work OK if you mix it well

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Post by carnap » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:18 pm

There is very little research on meat substitutes as a whole.

Personally I think its best to greatly limit the use of seitan as a meat substitute. Firstly while seitan is high in protein the protein is low in quality secondly people already eat plenty of wheat/grain products and people are typically eating seitan with wheat or other grain products. So there is a risk of your diet becoming overly concentrated in wheat/grain products.

In contrast soy products are also high in protein but the protein quality is high (similar to meat) and offers a different mix of nutrients. For ground meat substitutes you can also use legumes like chickpeas. Just mush them up and fry them a bit and add spices. While pretty processed, TVP (textured vegetable protein - its a soy product) is a really convenient substitute for ground meat. Though personally I think TVP tastes like cardboard.....then again I think seitan tastes even worse.

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Post by LucyT » Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:31 am

carnap wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:18 pm
There is very little research on meat substitutes as a whole.

Personally I think its best to greatly limit the use of seitan as a meat substitute. Firstly while seitan is high in protein the protein is low in quality secondly people already eat plenty of wheat/grain products and people are typically eating seitan with wheat or other grain products. So there is a risk of your diet becoming overly concentrated in wheat/grain products.

In contrast soy products are also high in protein but the protein quality is high (similar to meat) and offers a different mix of nutrients. For ground meat substitutes you can also use legumes like chickpeas. Just mush them up and fry them a bit and add spices. While pretty processed, TVP (textured vegetable protein - its a soy product) is a really convenient substitute for ground meat. Though personally I think TVP tastes like cardboard.....then again I think seitan tastes even worse.
I need a source for the above-bolded lines. Because, to me, someone who has researched nutrition for years now, the term "low-quality" makes no sense unless you tell me WHY it is low quality. Is it the amino acid content? It is low in Lysine, but aside from that seem to be pretty good Amino Acid wise.

I mean, of course, I am going to mix it up with beans, legumes, and tofu, so eating only seitan was never a mindset.

It can't be the fiber content, as Seitan has no fiber. However, beans and legumes have fiber, which lowers the bioavailability of the protein you consume by up to 25%. In fact, compared to beans and lentils, wheat gluten is 99% bioavailable protein. In fact, again, it is a more bioavailable protein than Soy Protein Isolate, which is basically what TVP is made of.

Image

This graph comes from the World Health Organization, http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/hand ... sequence=1

I would otherwise think you were talking about vitamin and nutrient content, but then you mention TVP, which basically has none.

So I would love to see your rationale.

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Post by Jebus » Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:30 am

carnap wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:18 pm
Personally I think its best to greatly limit the use of seitan as a meat substitute.
I'm thinking the exact opposite.
carnap wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:18 pm
Firstly while seitan is high in protein the protein is low in quality secondly people already eat plenty of wheat/grain products and people are typically eating seitan with wheat or other grain products.
Please explain what you mean by low quality. Wheat is packed with protein and it is probably our most sustainable way of getting protein to the masses.

I worry more about vegans and vegetarians eating too much soy than eating too much wheat. However, if that were the case I would prefer to recommend that they eat bread based on another grain than to favor "soy meat" over seitan.

carnap wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:18 pm
In contrast soy products are also high in protein but the protein quality is high (similar to meat) and offers a different mix of nutrients.
Wheat is an excellent source of minerals. Once the water content is removed it has a better nutrient to weight ratio than soy.
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Post by carnap » Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:08 pm

LucyT wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:31 am
I need a source for the above-bolded lines. Because, to me, someone who has researched nutrition for years now, the term "low-quality" makes no sense unless you tell me WHY it is low quality. Is it the amino acid content? It is low in Lysine, but aside from that seem to be pretty good Amino Acid wise.
Protein quality is a common phrase in nutritional science, see here for a description:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protein_quality

Seitan is a low-quality protein because its low in Lysine and lacks Tryptophan. In contrast soy is a complete protein.

LucyT wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:31 am
It can't be the fiber content, as Seitan has no fiber. However, beans and legumes have fiber, which lowers the bioavailability of the protein you consume by up to 25%. In fact, compared to beans and lentils, wheat gluten is 99% bioavailable protein.
Protein isolates all have high protein digestibility, its the processing the increases it. You'd compare seitan to legume protein isolates not whole legumes. But the lack of fiber isn't an asset, eating the whole food (or minimally processed) is health promoting,

But its not just about protein, but nutrition as a whole. As I said in my previous post, people typically eat seitain with other grain products which makes the meal overtly concentrated in grain products. In contrast adding some seitan based mock meat to a salad wouldn't have the same issue.

The general issue here is that people often use vegan mock products in the same context they do meat but they don't share the same nutritional value so the context of use shouldn't be the same. Though some of the products are fortified in a way to make them at least somewhat similar. In this sense soy products are typically a better match than grain-based products.
LucyT wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:31 am
I would otherwise think you were talking about vitamin and nutrient content, but then you mention TVP, which basically has none.
TVP, like seitan, retains some of its mineral content but very little vitamin content. So it doesn't entirely lack nutritional value. But the point of mentioning TVP was for the higher protein quality. TVP and seitan have roughly the same digestibility but soy protein is much higher quality (in terms of its amino acid profile).

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Post by carnap » Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:29 pm

Jebus wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:30 am
I'm thinking the exact opposite.
But why? Its a processed protein with low-quality protein (see link in my prior post for the a description of protein quality) which doesn't even taste good. I guess the taste is to a degree subjective, but without adding a lot of salt, fats, etc its not tasty. That is to say, to get seitan to be palatable you typically have to prepare it in ways that make it unhealthy.

Jebus wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:30 am
Please explain what you mean by low quality. Wheat is packed with protein and it is probably our most sustainable way of getting protein to the masses.
Wheat has a moderate protein content and huge mono-cultures of wheat aren't sustainable at all. A sustainable system, one that has been practiced for thousands of years, is created by rotating grain and legume crops. Legume crops fix nitrogen in the soil that grain crops require.

So, on the contrary, I'd suggest this is another reason to limit the use of seitan. A sustainable system will have to have reasonable mix of grain and legume products. Furthermore to make seitan you remove the vast majority of the energy content (e.g., the starch) and the resulting starchy water doesn't have much food value.
Jebus wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:30 am
I worry more about vegans and vegetarians eating too much soy than eating too much wheat. However, if that were the case I would prefer to recommend that they eat bread based on another grain than to favor "soy meat" over seitan.
Why would you promote the consumption of additional grain products over legumes? Its not just soy, there are is a large variety of legume products.

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Post by LucyT » Sat Jun 09, 2018 1:20 pm

Seitan is a low-quality protein because its low in Lysine and lacks Tryptophan. In contrast soy is a complete protein.
That's literally inaccurate. Wheat gluten does indeed have Tryptophan, and has a good deal of it to be honest.
"eating the whole food (or minimally processed) is health promoting"
Well, duh.
Though some of the products are fortified in a way to make them at least somewhat similar. In this sense soy products are typically a better match than grain-based products.
Unless it's TVP, which almost is never fortified, but OK.
But the point of mentioning TVP was for the higher protein quality. TVP and seitan have roughly the same digestibility but soy protein is much higher quality (in terms of its amino acid profile).
Again, not really. In terms of digestibility, the lower bioavailability of soy lowers the amino acids that would be absorbed as well. Causing the only significant difference between them to be lysine content, and even then, so long as you are consuming a varied diet, you should be good on lysine.

Image

So no, soy is not a higher quality protein.
Its a processed protein with low-quality protein (see link in my prior post for the a description of protein quality) which doesn't even taste good. I guess the taste is to a degree subjective, but without adding a lot of salt, fats, etc its not tasty. That is to say, to get seitan to be palatable you typically have to prepare it in ways that make it unhealthy.
Again, it's not low quality. But I think the most obnoxious part is taste. "but without adding a lot of salt, fats, etc its not tasty. That is to say, to get seitan to be palatable you typically have to prepare it in ways that make it unhealthy."

I add a fair amount of salt, fats, etc to my lentils and beans when I eat it. I sautee my vegetables much of the time. I guess that means that I should avoid bell peppers, beans, legumes, onions, and broccoli because I add seasonings to it, lol :lol:

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