What is Biological Value (BV)?

The Biological Value (BV) is a scale of measurement used to determine what percentage of a given nutrient source is utilized by the body. The scale is most frequently applied to protein sources, particularly whey protein. Biological Value is derived from providing a measure intake of protein, then determining the nitrogen uptake versus nitrogen excretion. The theoretical highest BV of any food source is 100%.

Although one gram of protein will contain four calories in all cases, the amount of protein which our body can digest and use for muscle building purposes is not always 100%. In fact, the most easily digestible natural protein source are whole eggs, where the percentage net utilization by our bodies is 94%. Because eggs contain the best protein digestion rate of any natural source, eggs are given a protein rating of ‘100’ and all other protein containing food sources are rated according to how digestible they are compared to egg protein.

Here’s a list of various protein sources with their Biological Value in relation to BV of egg:

Food Protein BV Rating
Eggs (Whole)100
Eggs (Egg Whites)92
Milk91
Fish82
Lean Beef 80
Chicken79
Soybean74
Oats68
Whole wheat65
Rice63
Peas61
Corn58
Beans56

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