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5 High Protein Non Meat Foods For Vegetarians
With growing consciousness about health and wellbeing and a desire to save mother Earth, more and more people are opting for vegetarian or vegan diets. While it is certainly rewarding to opt for a non meat diet the one dilemma which people generally face and which sometimes inhibit them from opting for vegetarian diets are there concerns about availability of protein in vegetarian diet.
For example, some of the common concerns are – Will I get adequate protein from the non meat diets? Are plant based proteins of inferior quality than their non-vegetarian counterparts? Will I get sufficient proteins from the plant food sources?
The good news for people facing such dilemma is that plant based proteins are not inferior or insufficient in quality. Since plant foods are lower in one or other essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein) it is important to mix and match diets and eat a variety of foods in order to procure all the amino acids required by the body. There are ample sources of plant based protein which can fulfill daily protein requirements of a healthy adult.
Here we present you a list of 5 non meat sources of protein.
Non Meat Sources Of Protein
Nuts may have been notorious so far as a high fat snack but the fact is that nuts are laden with good fats, a high amount of protein and antioxidants like vitamin A and E. The great thing about nuts is that they are packed with such proteins which are ready to use for the body. Nuts like groundnuts, almonds, cashew nuts and pine nuts are quite high in protein. You can eat nuts in various ways.
You can grind, roast, soak them overnight or eat them raw as per your convenience. A quarter cup of raw peanuts which is also one of the cheapest variety of nuts, contain as much as 9gms of protein. Other nuts like almonds contain 8 gms per and pistachio contain 6gms of protein in a quarter cup. The only word of caution while eating nuts is to eat them moderation since nuts are high in fats. Limit your total intake of nuts to one handful or one oz a day only.
Soybeans And Soy Products
Soybeans is one of the best plant based proteins available on earth. Soybeans are known as complete proteins and they are supposed to be as good as any animal based protein. Soybean has been considered as a miracle food since ages because it is loaded with protein, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids and fiber. One cup of soybean can give you a whooping 29 grams of protein.
Considering the fact that an average person of 150 lbs requires almost 55gms of protein a day, 29gms of protein from one cup of soy is a great amount of nutrition which can cover half of the nutritional requirement of a day. Another advantage about soy is that it can be eaten in a variety of forms like soy curd, tofu, meat analogues, Cheese, yogurt, milk, tempeh, etc. Given such a huge variety of items one can never get bored with soy and soy products.
Grains are traditionally referred as high carbohydrate foods. In fact, grains qualify for high protein foods also. When we talk about grains we generally refer to wheat but the fact is that other than wheat there are many other grains which contain high amount of proteins.
Quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth and oats are some of the grains which are high in proteins. While oats are popular as a breakfast but other grains are left unattended. A cup of quinoa can give you 9gms of protein, making it a healthier choice. The protein in quinoa is considered as good as animal protein. Including these grains in our daily diet can make it easier to meet the daily protein requirement through non meat foods.
If you are not a vegan and are open to consuming dairy products then it is a great way to meet your protein requirement. Just remember to choose from low fat varieties of dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. The low fat varieties are low in fats and calories but they are equally good so far as protein and calcium are concerned.
You can include dairy products in your diet in many ways be it yogurt at breakfast time or low fat cheese in your evening snack. One cup of fat free cottage cheese provides you a whooping 31 gms of protein and a cup of fat free yogurt supplies you as much as 14gms of protein. Taking three to four servings of low fat or non fat dairy products is a good way to fulfill protein requirement.
Pulses Or Legumes
Foods like peas, lentils, kidney beans, chick peas, etc come under a category called legumes or pulses. These pulses are also a very good source of protein and should be included in daily diet in various forms. Pulses can be added to soups, sandwiches, salads, omelets, burritos, etc. A cup of lentils contain almost 18 gms of protein whereas a cup of beans like kidney beans, lima beans, pinto beans, black beans, garbanzo beans (popularly known as chickpeas ) contain as much as 15 gms of protein which make it a plant based high protein food.
Another thing to be kept in mind is that plant foods are lower in one or other amino acids and hence mixing different kind of foods in one single day’s diet helps in meeting the need of all the amino acids. For example, you can combine rice with beans, whole grains and legumes in the same day’s diet and can reap maximum advantage.
It is evident from the abovementioned foods that there are enough plant based sources of protein which produce high quality protein and which can be incorporated in our daily diets without any problems. Eating a variety of foods can easily fulfill our daily requirement of protein and can give way to a healthy living.5 High Protein Non Meat Foods For Vegetarians,