Creamy roasted sprouts and pasta.Imgae by Lablascovegmenu
One of the perceived concerns with adopting a “plant-based diet”, is a “lack of adequate protein”? For others, it is the image of boring, veggie-heavy meals,
Outside of veganism or vegetarianism, plant-based meals do not mean ‘no meat’. In this concept, it means prioritizing plants over meat but not to exclusion like most other diets, making it an option for people to adopt a more environmentally friendly diet, and also expand their cooking repertoire.
Dr. Vikki Petersen, Certified Clinical Nutritionist, Chiropractor and Functional Medicine doctor, highlights to Digital Journal readers the ways that a plant-based diet can benefit a person’s overall health and wellness while leaving them satisfied and even eager for their next plant-based meal.
Petersen explains: “A plant-based diet is one that is made up primarily of high-quality plant foods and is generally agreed by nutrition experts to be the best way to eat to extend your longevity and avoid degenerative disease.”
In addressing why some people do not go for plant-based foods, she adds: “The most common misconception about a plant-based diet is that you cannot get adequate protein without eating meat. This is untrue and plant-based protein sources are less inflammatory and easier to digest than their animal-based counterparts.”
Dr. Petersen’s provides five plant-based foods that have more protein than meat, especially for Digital Journal readers:
FOOD #1: Black Beans
Black beans provide 15 grams of protein in a single one-cup serving, about the same as two chicken drumsticks. Black beans can be added to soups, stews, mashed for refried beans or added to a veggie patty as a great source of protein. Then there is the “black bean brownie” recipe that is ridiculously delicious and possesses the hidden high protein ingredient of black beans.
FOOD #2: Soybeans
Soybeans, in their organic form only to avoid dangerous GMOs, provide 18 grams of protein in a single one cup serving, similar to a hamburger patty. If you have heard erroneous information about soy and it causing hormonal imbalance or even cancer, it is false. It is unfortunately something that despite being untrue has been so widely disseminated it is considered “fact” by many – but the science refutes any concerns.
FOOD #3: Almonds
Almonds and almond butter provide 12 grams of protein in a single serving of ¼ cup. A single tablespoon of almond butter provides equivalent protein as a glass of milk.
If you prefer peanut butter, 2 tablespoons provide 8 grams of protein.
FOOD #4: Oatmeal
Oatmeal provides 6 grams of protein in a half-cup serving. That is equivalent to a single egg. I don’t know about you, but my oatmeal serving is about 1 cup, doubling the protein provided to 12 grams. Add some nut butter and soy milk on top (as I do), and you are easily eating over 20 grams of protein in a single meal.
FOOD #5: Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds provide 31 grams of complete protein per serving. A chicken breast, by comparison, provides 26 grams. As a complete protein, hemp provides every amino acid including all 9 essential amino acids. Hemp seeds are best added to other dishes including smoothies, granola, oatmeal, salads and the like. It provides a nutty taste to anything you add it to.