Meatless or Non-Animal Protein Sources
Have you seen info about quinoa, peanut butter, or other nuts and seeds being good sources of protein? While they may contain higher amounts of protein than other vegetables or non-meat options, their overall protein content is poor. -
Looking at this graph, you can see that getting 25 grams of protein (what most would consider an adequate amount for an average meal) would require eating 400+ calories in most cases. In quinoa’s case - 682 calories would only yield 25g of protein. -
Compare this to the right side of the graph, and you’ll notice that animal-based foods are superior sources of protein in terms of calorie composition (and amino acid profiles for fitness-minded individuals). But what should you do if you want to avoid meat or animal products? -
First, I would encourage the consideration of a pescatarian (fish) or lacto ovo (milk and eggs) style of eating. If that’s a no go, you’ll see the pea protein on the far right of the graph. There are plenty of vegan-friendly protein powders that provide healthy amounts of protein without adding a ton of extra calories. -
Whether you’re concerned about protein intake or not, it’s important to realize the calorie composition of the foods you’re eating. Even if you’re eating “well” and consuming primarily plant-based foods, you can over consume calories and gain body fat/weight. This extra body fat can cause issues and health complications independent from dietary intake.
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