Vegans face a lot of ridicule in this world for the way that they choose to live their lives. One of them being that if you go vegan, you'll be deficient in protein.
Since meat does indeed offer a lot of protein, around one cup being 38g, it's only logical that some might feel there is no other way to get protein of that magnitude on a plant-based diet, but that simply isn't true.
There is such a wide variety of plant-based proteins out there that can help your mind and body stay fueled throughout the day.
Below I'll list some of the best ones out there, and I have the feeling you're going to be surprised about it! There is protein in things you would never have thought about, and perhaps it will introduce you to a new food as well - after all, life is all about evolving.
For the average person, you should consume 1g for every kilogram that you weigh.
1. Lentils = 18g for one cup
18g, you say? Lentils are not only high in protein, but they lower cholesterol, help to reduce blood cholesterol since it contains high levels of soluble fiber, good digestive and heart health, increase energy, and help with weight loss.
In two cups of lentils, you're able to achieve the about same amount of protein as chicken.
2. Pumpkin Seeds = 6g for 3 tbsp
Pumpkin seeds are a nutritional powerhouse that is often overlooked. They are known for being full of manganese, zinc, copper, and magnesium.
Pumpkin seeds can easily be added to any meal to increase the protein content.
I suggest toasting them in the oven and adding them to your salads. It creates a great crunch!
3. Almonds = 15g for 1/2 cup
Almonds are the perfect snack for anyone who lives life on the go and needs something to hold them over until they're able to eat a whole meal. Almonds are great for you as they contain lots of healthy fats, fiber, protein, magnesium and vitamin E.
For almonds, I suggest buying roasted unsalted ones. High levels of sodium aren't good for you and will work to dehydrate you.
4. Beans = 15-18g cooked per cup
Beans are a beautiful, inexpensive protein. Compared to buying meat, you will save a lot of money if you had beans as a staple in your life.
Beans are a powerhouse of nutrients including fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins and minerals, such as copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium and zinc.
And as the saying prevails...beans will let's say...help your bowel movements.
5. Brown Rice = 18g for a cooked cup
Brown rice is fabulous grain to incorporate into your diet. It should also be a staple in your house to add to any meal, as it pairs very well. Brown rice has many health benefits, including the ability to reduce high cholesterol levels, and helps prevent atherosclerosis.
Also, there is a good amount of fiber in brown rice that helps by keeping blood sugar levels under control, so brown rice is an excellent grain choice for people with diabetes. Look at that!
As you can see in the aforementioned examples, there is a different array of ways to get your protein in. Furthermore, there is a lot more food that contains a good amount of protein. Some other suggestions I have is to incorporate quinoa, spinach, and hemp seeds! They are very versatile and can be added to just about any dish!
Getting in your adequate amount of plant-based protein doesn't have to be hard. Trust me; you don't have to survive just on tofu to incorporate vegan practices!