Resistant protein; its existence and function beneficial to health

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 2002 Feb;48(1):1-5. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.48.1.


The remnants of proteins themselves or complexes with protein remaining no longer indigestible in the intestine are referred to as resistant proteins, which exert physiological functions similar to dietary fibers and are also better for health. In recent years, noticeable functions attributable to resistant proteins have become gradually apparent with regard to several proteinous items. Recent investigations have revealed that the relevant ingredients are either condensed in isolates or concentrates of vegetable proteins or causally brought about as a consequence of denaturation and/or entanglement in the process of preparation. Some protein components inherently insusceptible to mammalian digestive enzymes also belong to the group of resistant proteins in case of edibility irrespective of their sources. Among the medicinal benefits of several resistant proteins hitherto pointed out by animal experiments, there were preventive effects against hypercholesterolemia, constipation, corpulence, tumorigenesis (colon, liver, mammary gland), gallstone formation or poisoning, and wholesome improvements in enteric fermentation of short-chain fatty acids.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dietary Proteins / metabolism*
  • Health*
  • Hypercholesterolemia / prevention & control*
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary / metabolism*
  • Protein Denaturation / physiology*
  • Rats


  • Dietary Proteins
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary