If you are wondering whether being vegetarian you can get enough protein for your bodily requirements, this article is going to provide you meaningful insights for vegetarian lifestyle. Lets take a look at various options available for you for vegetarian protein sources.
Protein is one of the macro-nutrients of the body. Protein is not stored in our body in the original format. As we consume protein it converts in to muscles and used as the building block of the body. Unlike fats and carbohydrates, protein is not readily available to meet its requirement because of storage. It is very important for us to replenish it every day, as deficiency of protein leads to depletion of muscle mass. Secondly, everybody is partly made up of protein, so it is needed for maintenance, upkeep and regeneration of all our body cells and organs – right from hair to hormones, antibodies to nerves, and hemoglobin to bones.
However, it is possible to circumvent this challenge by eating smart – and making your meals complete and protein smart.
- Include protein rich grains in your diet.
Eat grains with higher amount of proteins like quinoa, oats, buckwheat and amaranth. All of these deliver much more protein than the regular staples like rice and wheat. My top two picks are: quinoa and buckwheat.
2. Balance the protein content in your food.
Combine plant foods wisely to cover all essential amino acids.
For example, legumes (cooked dried beans, dried peas, and lentils) are low in sulfur containing amino acids (such as methionine), but they are high in another amino acid called lysine. Grains are just the opposite.
Hence having legumes as well as grains gives you the goodness of both. Beans and rice, dal chawal, khichdi, pita bread with hummus (ground garbanzo beans and sesame seed paste) are good examples of complementary proteins.
3. Soy Protein
Soy provides us with all the essential amino acids we need. Try cooking nuggets or tofu as a bhurji, with a spicy Indian style masala. Have edamame beans lightly steamed and salted, and soya atta can easily be popped into your regular chapati atta.
4. Adding a mixture of different kinds of lentils and beans
At 15-18 grams of protein per cooked cup (240 ml), lentils are a great source of protein.
Try beans on toast, stuff them in a burrito or cook them into a Tex Mex-style chili, or plain old, rajma chawal and kaali dal.
My pick: sattu (have as sattu shared or sattu roti) and sprouts – both are an easy way to boost your everyday protein intake.
This blue-green algae is definitely a protein powerhouse. Two tablespoons (30 ml) provide you with 8 grams of complete protein. Just mix it up with water and gulp every day.