Recently I’ve been finding myself informing more and more people about the protein sources I eat that do not include meat. Usually the conversation gets started when someone finds out I’m a vegetarian. The follow up question is almost always, “Well how do you get your protein?” Every time I start to ramble off a list, but I always feel like I’m missing a few key items. So here’s some interesting information I found on WebMD article.
Milk, Cheese, and Yogurt
Not only are dairy foods — like milk, cheese, and yogurt — excellent sources of protein but they also contain valuable calcium. Choose skim or low fat dairy to keep bones and teeth strong, prevent osteoporosis, and enhance weight loss.
Eggs are one of the least expensive forms of protein. The American Heart Association says normal healthy adults can safely enjoy an egg a day.
One-half cup of beans contains as much protein as three ounces of broiled steak. Plus, these nutritious nuggets are loaded with fiber to keep you feeling full for hours.
Twenty five grams of soy protein daily can help lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease. Combine soy protein foods like tofu with a healthy low fat diet.
Now here is a list I found on the vegetarian website Happycow.net.
Here are some examples of vegetarian foods with high sources of plant protein:
PROTEIN IN LEGUMES: Garbanzo beans, Kidney beans, Lentils, Lima beans, Navy beans, Soybeans, Split peas
PROTEIN IN GRAINS: Barley, Brown rice, Buckwheat, Millet, Oatmeal, Quinoa, Rye, Wheat germ, Wheat, hard red, Wild rice
VEGETABLE PROTEIN: Artichokes, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Green peas, Green pepper, Kale, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Mustard green, Onions, Potatoes, Spinach, Tomatoes, Turnip greens, Watercress, Yams, Zucchini
PROTEIN IN FRUITS: Apple, Banana, Cantaloupe, Grape, Grapefruit, Honeydew melon, Orange, Papaya, Peach, Pear, Pineapple, Strawberry, Tangerine, Watermelon
PROTEIN IN NUTS AND SEEDS: Almonds, Cashews, Filberts, Hemp Seeds, Peanuts, Pumpkin seeds, Sesame seeds, Sunflower seeds, Walnuts (black)
So what do I eat? Well yesterday I had:
- Breakfast: 2 egg whites with 3 cherry tomatoes, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese and 1 whole-wheat English muffin
- Lunch: brown rice, broccoli and sweet potato chunks
- Snack/Dinner: 1 cup of yogurt, 1 apple, raw cauliflower, broccoli and carrots, and 1 cup of chocolate soymilk
On any given day you may find me eating spinach with tomatoes, lentils with barley, or almonds with a banana. That being said, every single thing on that list is a high source of protein. Plus, my proteins didn’t come with a heaping side of hormone additives.
So go ahead and swap out your daily turkey sandwich with a big bowl of mustard greens and onions!
…Just kidding. Don’t do that.