Regardless of what diet plan you follow protein is an essential part of any diet. Protein is needed to help your body build new cells, maintain tissue and synthesize new proteins to help you perform basic bodily functions.
The human body is also full of proteins, both inside and out, for example your skin, hair and nails are made up of the protein keratin. But whilst your body will build some proteins of its own, there are certain proteins such as amino acid’s that you need to take via the food you eat and it’s recommended 15% of your daily diet is protein.
You may think that the only way to get good quality protein is from meat - but you’re wrong. Whether you’re a vegetarian or vegan, there are plenty of non-meat proteins that you can eat.
Here are seven non meat protein sources that you can add to your diet to make sure that you’re getting your daily allowance…
Nuts and Seeds: When it comes to nuts and seeds there are an abundance to choose from. Per 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds have 9g, Walnuts have 4g, sesame seeds and pistachios are both 6g and peanuts are 9g so as you can see they are absolutely ram packed.
Beans and Lentils: Beans and lentils are a must have for any kitchen pantry. They are a brilliant source of protein (around 15g per 1 cup of beans). But the other huge benefit of beans and lentils is that they are extremely cheap so ideal if you’re on a budget.
Quinoa: Quinoa is low in fat, high in protein and perfect if you’re following a gluten free diet. Quinoa is also great if you’ve got a busy lifestyle as it’s cooks in no time at all. When cooking use a bit of vegetable stock to enhance it’s natural, nutty flavour.
Tofu: Tofu is a great meat substitute and with 9g of protein it works in a variety of dishes. Tofu contains all eight essential amino acids and also is a great source of iron and calcium. Why not make a tofu stir fry tonight?
Eggs: Eggs are probably one food that people associate with protein. The average egg has around 6.30g of protein and they make a great snack for people on the go. Eggs are loaded with vitamins and minerals and are a great part of a healthy diet.
Avocado: Avocados are an excellent source of raw protein with over 10g per avocado. They also keep your heart healthy because they are rich in those omega-3 fatty acids. Avocado’s are also great for smoothies because they thicken them up and will ensure that they keep you full until your next meal.
Peanut Butter: I know we’ve mentioned nuts but peanut butter is 28% pure protein. It also has monounsaturated fats which help fight cardiovascular disease. It’s also a great anti-oxidant.
Beetroot: We love beetroot, as you’ll know if you’ve tried our beet it juice. Beetroot is low calorie and antioxidant rich. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is excellent for your liver. It’s also a brilliant source of protein with six small beetroots being the equivalent of one chicken breast.
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