The type of protein you’re consuming is important to ensure you’re getting all the essential amino acids. There is a lot of misconception when it comes to protein, especially if you are vegan or vegetarian. Many meat eaters may wonder where vegetarians/vegans get their protein if they do not eat meat. Fortunately, there are so many incredible plant-based proteins out there. Even those who consume meat should be consuming these plant-based proteins because they have many health benefits.
Aim for 15-25% of daily intake to be from protein.
WHAT IS PROTEIN?
Protein is needed in the body to maintain and repair cell tissue (muscles, hair, skin, etc.). Protein is made up of amino acids (the “building blocks” of protein).
There are 20 different amino acids with 11 being non-essential and 9 essential. These are essential because the body cannot produce them; therefore, we need to consume them! Many foods (as you will see below) are complete proteins, meaning they have all essential amino acids. Some foods such as legumes, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds are incomplete proteins and do not contain all essential amino acids. Therefore, consuming a variety of whole foods throughout the day is important to ensure you’re consuming different nutrients.
Essential amino acids: Phenylalanine, Valine, Threonine, Methionine, Tryptophan, Histidine, Isoleucine, Leucine, and Lysine
Even those who consume meat should be consuming plant-based proteins because they have many health benefits.
HOW MUCH PROTEIN SHOULD I EAT?
A general rule: 0.8g of protein per kg (body weight) per day
Calculation for a 130 lbs women:
Pounds divided by kg (2.2 conversion): 130/2.2= 59 kg
59*0.8= 47.2 grams of protein per day
Quinoa | 1/2 cup cooked quinoa contains approximately 8 grams of protein
Read more about quinoa here | Quinoa recipes here
Spirulina | 2 tablespoons contain approximately 8 grams of protein
I love adding spirulina to smoothies, check out my Green Smoothie for Glowing Skin recipe
Chia Seeds | 2 tablespoons contain approximately 4 grams of protein
Great in smoothies or in overnight oat recipes!
Hemp Seeds | 3 tablespoons contain approximately 10 grams of protein
I add hemp seeds to the majority of my smoothie recipes, find them here
I like to purchase Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seeds.
Organic Plant Based Protein Powders | protein amounts will vary on brand; some brands I recommend are Vega and Plant Fusion
Organic Tempeh & Tofu | 85 grams of organic tempeh/tofu provides approximately 15 grams of protein
Great on top of salads! Recipe here.
FREE PDF printable guide available here.
What’s your favorite plant-based protein?
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