Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Vegan Sources of Protein

8 Top Vegan Sources of Protein
(article reduced from vegetarian to vegan)

One of the most common myths about the vegetarian diet is that after ditching meat it becomes nearly impossible to meet the suggested guidelines for protein intake.

The USDA recommends that women get about 46 grams of protein a day and men get about 56. Some people, like athletes and pregnant or breastfeeding women, may need more, according to WebMD.

But, thanks in part to initiatives like Meatless Monday, this year, Americans are expected to eat 12 percent less meat and poultry than five years ago, USA Today reported.

While protein is essential to growth, building muscle, the immune system and heart and respiratory functions, MSNBC explains, meat-free protein has the benefit of generally being lower in calories and fat than the animal variety.

Whether you're a vegetarian or not, there are lots of tasty meat-free sources of protein that also pack additional health benefits. Here is more information concerning Animal Protein vs Plant-based Protein.

1. Spirulina

Spirulina is 65-71 percent complete protein compared to beef, which is only 22 percent, and lentils, which is only 26 percent. In addition to being protein-rich, spirulina is an excellent source of vital amino acids and minerals easily assimilated by your body. You would need to consume only two tablespoons of spirulina as a protein substitute for a meal.

2. Hemp

Protein Content: Seeds, 6 g per ounce; Milk, 2 g per cup.  If you're allergic to soy, or just freaked out by its estrogenic activity, hemp products are your next best bet. Sold as a dairy alternative or as seeds, hemp is one of very few plant proteins that supply you with all the essential amino acids, acids your body can't produce on its own to build muscle and create more protein. The fatty acids in hemp seeds and hemp milk also boost your immune system, and the crop itself is highly sustainable, growing as fast as 10 feet in 100 days and naturally requiring very few pesticides.

3. Chia Seeds

Protein Content: 4 g per ounce.  Though the protein content isn't as high as some other vegetarian foods out there, chia seeds pack a huge nutritional punch. For starters, they're an incredible fiber resource with nearly half (11 g) of the amount you need every day in a single ounce. That helps fill you up and eat fewer calories. They also contain 18 percent of your daily calcium requirement, more than triple that of milk, which helps your bones. Chia seeds have no flavor, so you can add a tablespoon to any food you wish to without altering its flavor, and unlike flax, chia seeds don't need to be ground in order for your body to absorb all the nutrients.

4. Quinoa

Protein Content: 1 cup of cooked quinoa (185 g) contains 8.14 grams of protein. Quinoa is perhaps one of the most perfect non-animal sources of protein on the planet. What makes quinoa (pronounce keen-wah) unique is that it is the only plant based source of complete protein. "Complete" means that it contains all 9 of the essential amino acids that are crucial to human function and health. It is also a wonderful option for those that follow a gluten free diet, since it is completely gluten free. (Quinoa can be soaked overnight to make a raw food breakfast cereal.)

5. Tempeh (soy ... hmmm)

Protein Content: A firmer, chewier cousin of tofu, a half-cup serving of this soybean-based bite has 15 grams of protein. Fermented foods ought to be part of everyone’s diet, vegetarian or not. Tempeh is one that is chewy and delicious, even to die-hard burger fans. It’s healthy and a much better bet than heavily processed tofu or “mock meats” that are brimming with poor-quality modified proteins, sodium, chemicals and starchy fillers. In my opinion it doesn’t compare nutritionally or in taste to a juicy steak but as vegetarian options go it ain’t half bad.

[NOTE: Soy is NOT for people with candida, and especially fermented soy!]

6. Almonds and Almond Butter

Protein Content: (between 6 and 8 grams, per handful). When adding a handful of nuts to your salad for protein, go with almonds. Almond butter is less toxic and allergenic than peanut butter, although the protein amounts are similar by comparison. Still, this is about quality protein, not necessarily the amount.

7. Veggies

Yep, good old greens will pack a protein punch. One cup of cooked spinach has about 7 grams of protein. The same serving of French beans has about 13 grams. Two cups of cooked kale? 5 grams. One cup of boiled peas? Nine grams.

8. Lentils and Beans

A cup of iron-rich lentils packs 18 grams of protein, almost as much as three ounces of steak. One cup of chickpeas, contains 15 grams of protein, as does a cup of black or kidney beans.

Seven of these eight protein sources can be eaten raw. Tempeh is the only one that requires processing and fermentation to prepare it. As for the beans and lentils, they can be sprouted and become even more protein-rich than in their cooked form!

Source Links:

This article was borrowed from Food Matters and does an excellent job of offering food choices to the people who are culturally indoctrinated to believe that they need high content protein foods. However, the truth of the matter is, people are eating way, as in wa-aa-ay too much protein (source China Study), and meat protein at that, which is medically, scientifically and socially known to clog the arteries, putrify in the gut, impair the senses and give an open invitation to disease. Plant protein, on the other hand, is filled with vitamins, minerals, and especially fiber (which is non-existent in meat protein). And plant protein, particularly that rich in chlorophyll, combats the very diseases and toxic state caused by meat proteins.

With this in mind, I'm a little surprised that Food Matters didn't also include sprouts as a very, very high-protein and nutritious choice. Bean and legume sprouts are ten times more protein-rich than their adult plant counterpart. Microgreens (radish, broccoli, onion, etc) are twenty times more protein-rich and enzyme filled. Planted seeds such as wheat grass, barley grass, pea sprouts, and sunflower greens that are harvested at 10-11 days are thirty times richer in enzymes and plant protein/nutrition than their adult counterpart.


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