Are you a vegetarian or have you decided to become one? Are you getting adequate nutritional value from your diet? A plant-based diet is great especially for people who hope to shed a few pounds. However, people on a plant-based diet often wonder if they are getting enough protein from the foods they eat.
Some argue that you must take some amount of meat protein even if it’s from lean meats to satisfy your protein requirements for optimal health. This is however just a myth. The truth of the matter is, you can actually get all the protein you require from a plant based diet. You just need to know which foods to eat and in what quantities.
How Much Protein Does Your Body Need?
There seems to be no consensus on how much protein our bodies need. The RDA, Centers for Disease Control Prevention and American Dietetic Association all give different recommendations. Our protein needs vary from individual to individual because we are all different. We weigh differently, we have different sexes, some exercise more than others and so our nutritional needs for protein and other elements cannot be uniform. Generally, however, it is agreed that 10% to 35% of your daily calorie intake, should be composed of protein.
Plant Based Protein Sources
All plants contain some amount of vegan protein but some foods are richer in proteins than others. Below are some of the best sources of plant based protein.
1. Oatmeal- There is no better way to start your day than enjoying some protein rich oatmeal. A cup of oatmeal contains about 28 grams of protein. There are different ways of cooking it to keep things interesting and you can add fruit, nuts, milk or hemp into it as well.
2. Lentils- Half a cup of lentils contains about 9 grams of proteins. They are delicious and also rich in fiber, magnesium, and iron. The fact that they are low in fats means they are a good option for someone looking to shed off some weight.
3. Quinoa- This is one of the cancer-fighting foods as it’s packed with antioxidants but it’s also rich in protein. About a cup of quinoa has 8 grams of protein.
4. Black beans- A cup of black beans contains about 8 grams of protein. They are tasty and versatile so you can enjoy them in soups, salads, burgers and so many other dishes. They are also rich in iron and calcium.
5. Artichokes- Nothing makes a veggie pizza delicious like protein rich artichokes. A cup of artichokes contains about 8 grams of protein and less than 100 calories.
6. Green peas- Green peas are very rich in protein and fiber whether in or out of the pod. You’ll get 8 grams of protein from one cup of green peas. They are also rich in leucine, an amino acid that aids in weight loss.
7. Hemp seeds- These are packed with proteins with just one tablespoon containing 4 grams of protein.
Add these seven plant based proteins into your diet and you will get all the nutritional value you need for healthy living.