Life of a Vegan part 6: Where’s the Protein

Posted on January 23rd, 2015 by Shari´ Parks

Many people believe a plant-based diet doesn’t provide enough protein. Yes, one can survive and not die living off a whole plant based diet. How else do some of the biggest and strongest animals on the planet like the gorilla, buffalo and elephant get so powerful on a herbivorous diet? So, when we talk protein we are really measuring amino acids. Amino acids have a specific role in our metabolism, muscle development, and wound healing. When you hear about your protein source being better than another, it’s referencing the amino acid makeup. Some animal foods contain high levels of amino acids. How much protein do you need? Between 10-20% of your total daily caloric intake. As a vegan athlete, another question I get all the time is about my protein intake. Sure, athletes need more protein than non-athletes, but I also need more carbs and fat than the average person. In fact, overall my caloric intake needs are much higher because I burn so much energy while training.

Of course there are many plant based foods that are great sources of protein. Some of the more popular are:
Legumes
Grains
Green vegetables
Nuts/Seeds
Whole grains
A variety of protein powders: hemp, pea protein, rice

So, don’t believe the hype. You won’t die of a protein deficiency if you eat a balance blend of some of the outstanding plant based sources. Take it from me. I’ve been doing this for a while.

* Sources *
No Meat Athlete by Matt Frazier

2 Responses

  1. Cool pic and great point that large and very strong animals eat plant based diets therefore so can humans to provide our body with needed nutrients.

  2. Cool pic and great point that large and very strong animals eat plant based diets therefore so can humans to provide our body with needed nutrients.