It’s interesting how many people think that meat is the only source of protein.
When I first became a vegetarian at age 8, I started learning about nutrition. Back then in order to have a “compete protein”, you needed to combine foods at each meal. I’m sure most of you have heard of some of those combos.
Some examples are: beans and rice, peanut butter and bread, legumes and quinoa. Okay…that last one was a stretch for an 8 year old but is a great example in today’s world. I mean, I know quinoa is an ancient grain and all, but back in the 70s in white trash suburbia, it wasn’t a known food!!
So these days it’s now known that the combos are still good to complete the protein, but they don’t need to be eaten at the same time. They can be eaten throughout your day and you still reap the benefits! Awesome!
What’s ever better is that most veggies have protein in them!! AND it’s been discovered that many of the plant based proteins are more absorbable and useable in your body!
I have a vegan recipe group on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/groups/7DayVeg) and although the recipes look and sound incredible, I rarely make them. I don’t want to spend my time and energy prepping, cooking, and cleaning. Just not my thing. So in addition to the recipes I post daily, I also post my quick, easy, throw-together meals and snacks to let people know other healthy (usually) and vegan (always) options.
About once a week even the vegans in the group say to me, “I saw your meals yesterday, where do you get your protein?” They ask because I don’t eat a lot of soy, beans, lentils, nuts, and other things most people think are the only vegan proteins. So every time someone asks, I go to myfitnesspal, put in all my meals and snacks, and check out my protein.
And amazingly enough, I always have the right amount for me!!
So what is the “right” amount? Like everything, it will be a bit different for everyone. But the general accepted RDA is half your body weight pounds in grams of protein. For example: if you weigh 150 pounds you need 75 grams of protein. The actual RDA is .8 g per pound of body weight, so my formula is even a bit more than what I actually need, but I like simplicity.
Here are a couple examples of meals with protein that would surprise most people…
1. The other day I ate a bag of corn for my lunch. I wasn’t very hungry and only had a few minutes to make something and corn sounded good. I was actually making it on a Periscope broadcast (@throwtogethervegan) and someone of course asked about protein. I looked it up after and that lunch had 18 grams of protein. In corn!
2. A snack I recently made (also on Periscope) was broccoli salad w raw broccoli, balsamic vinegar, vegenaise, garlic, salt, and pepper. I looked it up after… 14 grams.
3. My typical breakfast smoothie has over 25 grams.
4. My oatmeal I eat a few times a week with PB and Grade B Syrup has a whopping 28 grams of protein!
5. Even in my rice/avocado/tomato meal I eat about 4 times a week, I get 22 grams
6. Oh, and a banana has 1.5 g and I eat several of those each day for snacks.
It all adds up. People forget that most foods have some amount of protein in them. And since I eat 3 meals and 3 snacks a day with a variety of fruits, veggies, rice, potatoes, and nuts, I always get enough protein for the day.
So just for fun a couple weeks ago I decided to add up the protein of my super unhealthy junk food dinner of Almond Milk Ice Cream, Peanut Butter, and Gluten-Free Vegan Cookie Dough. It made me laugh because even that low nutrient crap dinner had 43 g of protein!!! So if I am feeling low on protein from my fruits and veggies, I can always compensate with a dinner of crappy empty calories and too much sugar. It may make me sick and fat, but at least I’m getting enough protein!!
Here is the link to join our vegan recipe group (and to check out my meals each day)…
Thanks for always being here!
See you SOON!