We are faced with so many lifestyle choices in the modern day. Not only do we have to choose what we want to wear, how we want to style our hair and what type of exercises we want to participate in to ensure we fit in with the modern-day society, we also have to choose what type of diet we wish to follow.
This can all be very confusing and even somewhat frustrating; thus the majority of the worldwide population tend to avoid having to choose a particular diet to follow. This, unfortunately, often causes people to opt for unhealthy food options when it comes to preparing a meal or having a snack throughout the day.
An unhealthy diet causes an increased risk of illness and diseases, which may become problematic.
One particular lifestyle choice that many consider to be a healthy option to choose is veganism. While there are still a large number of unhealthy options that a person can choose when deciding what to make for dinner or what type of snack to have during the day, a lot of people adopt a vegan lifestyle in order to make a healthier move in their lives.
A vegan diet comprises primarily of whole-foods, such as vegetables, fruits and nuts. Vegans do not consume any type of products that are animal-derived, including meat, eggs and more.
In addition to their diet, becoming a vegan also means sustaining from the use of any physical products that contain animal-derived materials – this means no more leather couches and handbags.
While there are quite a large number of benefits to the vegan diet, individuals who wish to turn to this lifestyle choice are often faced with difficulty since there are some vital nutrients that many vegan diets lack.
Vitamin B12 is one particular nutrient that is obtained from meat, but substituting with a multivitamin is often enough to keep the levels of this vitamin high in a vegan’s body. Another particular area of interest regarding a vegan diet is protein.
Meat is known as a vital source of protein, but this does not mean that a vegan cannot consume enough protein. Numerous plant sources do contain a high concentration of protein that is perfect for supporting muscle tissue and even for muscle building.
Today, we are going to take a closer look at why protein is so important in a vegan diet, what the best sources of protein are for a vegan and we will share some excellent protein powders that have been specifically made for vegans.
The Importance Of Protein And How Much Your Body Needs
Protein is an essential nutrient that the human body depends on for a large number of reasons. WebMD explains that protein plays a key role in every single cell that is found in the human body.
Certain parts of the body, including the nails and hair, primarily consists of protein. For tissue in the body to be built and repaired, protein is also required.
In addition to these functions, protein also plays a crucial role in the development of certain hormones and enzymes, as well as many other natural chemicals that are produced inside the body.
Furthermore, protein acts as a building block for numerous parts of the human body, including the blood, skin, cartilage, bones and muscles.
Since protein is an essential part of the human body and contributes to some of the most essential functions in our bodies, it is important that an adequate amount of protein is consumed daily – and to ensure that the protein acquired is of high-quality.
One particular issue when it comes to the consumption of protein sources is the recommended daily protein intake amount. This is quite a complex area to discuss, since the specific intake requirements of protein defer from one person to another person.
In order to determine how much protein your body requires, there are several factors that need to be taken into account. Your age and body weight would be two of the primary factors that should be considered when determining how much protein you should consume daily.
In addition to these factors, some other factors can also modify your daily protein requirements. Your goal, for example, regarding your physique, plays a key factor in determining the amount of protein you should consume.
If you do not follow an active lifestyle, then you will most likely require a lower amount of protein than someone who does follow an active lifestyle.
Bodybuilders, especially those who participate in bodybuilding competitions, often consume extremely high doses of protein daily in order to support the growth and repair of their muscles during exercise protocols.
According to Health.com, the minimum amount of protein that should be consumed in a single day should be equivalent to approximately 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of your total body weight.
They also note that, while this is the Recommended Dietary Allowance, it should be noted that this figure is a bare minimum. For optimal intake of protein, this figure should ideally be doubled, which means you should try to aim for around 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of your body weight.
This, however, accounts for individuals who are relatively active during their day-to-day lives and not to those who follow a sedentary lifestyle.
When we talk about protein, one of the very first objects that come to mind is usually a piece of steak – in some, a large portion of chicken breast may be what they associate with protein.
This is because protein is most often associated with meat, since meat is usually considered to be the body’s primary source of high-quality protein.
Since a vegan diet prohibits the consumption of any meat or animal-derived products – this includes eggs as well, another excellent source of protein – a lot of people who would like to turn to a vegan diet are afraid that they won’t be able to obtain such high-quality protein.
Fortunately, there is no need to worry about protein when deciding to adopt a vegan lifestyle. There are quite a large number of protein sources that vegans can use to ensure they obtain an adequate amount of protein during their daily diet.
Many of these protein sources are delicious, and can easily be added to meals to provide the vegan’s body with a balanced nutritional intake – including protein, healthy fats, minerals and all of the important vitamins the body needs.
It should be noted that, according to One Green Planet, a lot of people tend to think that the proteins found from plant-sources are not “complete proteins”. When we look at the dietary recommendations for the human body, we often see these publications mention that the human body requires these “complete proteins” in order to function properly.
The part of this fact that is true is the part that explains how the body needs “complete proteins” for optimal functionality and, of course, for optimal protein intake. The part that is a myth, however, is the part that explains plant-based protein sources not to contain these “complete proteins”.
In reality, there are a large variety of plant-based foods that contain “complete proteins” that are just as beneficial as those proteins that can be obtained from eating meat.
Let’s take a look at some excellent sources of protein that vegans can turn to, – these sources of protein will all be plant-based foods, and none of them will contain any type of animal-derived products.
- Soy Milk
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Green Beans
- Peanut Butter
- Nutritional Yeast
- Black EyedPeas
- Hemp Milk
- Chia Seeds
- Hemp Seeds
- Green Peas
- Black Beans
As you can see, the list of plant-based sources of “complete proteins” is quite large – so there are really no worries about not obtaining an adequate supply of protein should you wish to adopt the vegan lifestyle.
The majority of these food sources can be quickly added to delicious meals, and many of them can also be enjoyed on their own – pack a bag of almonds and take it to you with work, for example.
Top Sources Of Protein For Vegans
Best Protein Powders For Vegans
We have discussed the importance of protein and also looked at how much protein is considered adequate for the average person. We also considered some excellent plant-based sources of protein, and discussed how the fact that people often consider a vegan diet to lack “complete proteins” to be a myth.
One particular problem that some people may have is that they either cannot find a particular plant-based protein source they prefer at their local whole-foods store, or they simply do not have the time to make meals that contain a balanced amount of these protein sources. This can be quite unpleasant and even lead to a lack of optimal protein intake.
There is an alternative way for vegans to obtain enough protein to support every single cell within their body, and to ensure all systems in their body that depend on protein can gain access to high-quality protein. We are talking about vegan protein powders.
Quite a large number of vegan protein powders exist on the market, and these products make it extremely easy for vegans to obtain all the protein they need.
These products are often produced from seeds and other plant-based foods that are known to be high in quality protein, and they are very easy to use.
You can create a protein shake with this powder, or simply sprinkle some of it over your food – there are even some recipes that can be found on the internet to help you make quick, yet delicious drinks and meals with protein powder.
Below, we will share some of the best vegan protein powders that are currently on the market to help make the decision as to which protein powder you wish to buy considerably easier.
- Vega One All-In-One Vegan Protein Powder
This particular protein powder has been rated as the best by a number of different publications, and its online store listings also mostly contain positive five-star reviews.
The powder is made from a variety of high-quality plant sources, including flax seeds, SaviSeed, hemp seeds and peas. Each serving provides the user with 20 grams of protein, and the powder comes in a variety of flavors.
In addition to providing high-quality protein, this product also contains a variety of minerals and vitamins that are helpful to the human body.
- ALOHA Organic Protein Powder
Another excellent choice for vegans, delivering a potent 18 grams of protein per serving. This vegan-friendly protein powder is made from hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds and peas.
The powder is available in various flavors, including vanilla, mixed berry, chocolate and banana.
- Bob’s Red Mill Protein Powder
This protein powder is quite unique. It is made from both peas and chia seeds, and it is enriched with probiotics; thus offering support for the internal flora of the user’s body.
The powder provides 20 grams of protein in each serving, and comes in a variety of flavors.
- Garden of Life Raw Organic Protein
Garden of Life is known for creating some of the best vegan products on the market.
Their vegan protein powder delivers a dose of 22 grams protein per serving, and is made from a large variety of plant-based protein sources.
The powder also comes in different flavors, including vanilla, chocolate and vanilla chai. Additionally, the powder can also be purchased in an unflavoured option.
A vegan diet consists of fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, seeds and other plant-based foods, and excludes the consumption or use of any animal-derived products.
This means that an individual looking to turn vegan may find it difficult to obtain all of the most important nutrients their body requires to stay healthy and strong.
Fortunately, there are ways to supplement the body with the particular nutrients that plant-based foods lack – especially vitamin B12.
Even though protein is most often associated with meat, it is important to note that there are some excellent plant-based sources of protein as well.
In this post, we provided an overview of what plant foods can be consumed in order to obtain an adequate amount of protein in a vegan diet, and we looked at some vegan protein powders that can help any individual turning vegan ensure their bodies gain enough protein on a daily basis.
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