The Bioavailability Of Protein : What’s It All About?

Bioavailability refers to the quality of a protein by looking at its retention in the body. It basically measures the amount of protein that it absorbed and used by the body from any food source. The Biological Value is another term used to describe the Bioavailability of protein, and it can be calculated by measuring the amount of nitrogen used for tissue formation, divided by the nitrogen absorbed from the diet…so basically it measures the amount of nitrogen absorbed that is actually retained by the body.

Nitrogen is used to gauge this because it is only found in protein, and not carbs or fat. Therefore the level of nitrogen in the blood and urine is an ideal marker of protein breakdown and absorption. If no nitrogen is excreted then this indicates that 100% of the protein ingested was utilised by the body for tissue synthesis.


Llewellyn, W. (2009). Sport Supplement Reference Guide. FL : Molecular Nutrition LLC.

About the Author

Job Role Qualified Dietitian and Sports Nutritionist Qualifications BSc (Hons) Sports Science | BSc (Hons) Dietetics Tom has always participated in sport both recreationally and competitively which led to an unquenchable thirst for information on anything health, nutrition and fitness. After leaving school Tom went on to play for a football academy during which time he studied Sport and Exercise Science. From here he went on to study a BSc (Hons) Sport Science at UEA followed by his second BSc (Hons) degree, this time at the University of Hertfordshire studying Dietetics. Tom has worked in the fitness, educational and clinical nutrition industry starting out at David Lloyd Health and Leisure Clubs. He then went on to work as a Dietitian (RD) in the NHS, during which time he conducted clinics for healthy eating, weight loss and weight gain, as well as specialised consultations on Diabetes, IBS and Coeliac disease to name a few. He has vast amounts of experience at devising diet plans and supplement regimens, as well as working in the community with schools and competitive athletes. As Head Nutritionist and Supplement expert at Discount Supplements Tom is here to provide current and evidence based health and nutrition information to help you reach your health and fitness goals!
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