We hear a LOT about protein these days, from powders, bars and vegan proteins in the supermarket, where do you get yours and why do you need it?
Why do we need it? Proteins are essential for the function of every cell in the body, they are made up of chains of amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. The body uses protein to build and repair tissues, in addition to making enzymes and hormones, it is the main building block of muscles, hair and nails. Not only that, protein is satiating, meaning it helps to keep us full after eating it and curb your hunger for hours after a meal or snack, helping maintain a healthy weight. Regular consumption can also help reduce muscle loss while building lean muscle mass. It’s easy to understand the focus that we put on this important macronutrient!
How much do you need? The average person needs 0.8-1.0g protein per kg body weight, and truthfully, most people consume this (or more!) daily. But when you think of protein sources, think beyond animal sources, and try to include vegetarian sources as well! Don’t forget that many foods that we don’t typically classify as protein-rich do contain protein, like bread, some vegetables, grains and dairy products.
One 30g serving of pistachios, for example, contain ¬6g protein, similar to the amount you find in an egg, or a 25g serving of Borna 100% Pure Pistachio Butter contains 5.25g protein.
|Vegetarian Protein Sources||Protein (g)|
|Beans & Pulses (per ¾ c. cooked)||9-11|
|Tofu (3/4c. cubed)||10-17|
|Bread (35g slice)||3-6|
|Brown Rice (1/2 c. cooked)||4|
|Oatmeal (3/4 c. cooked)||4-6|
|Cooked Pasta (1/2 c. cooked)||3-4|
|Vegetables (1/2 c. or 1 c. leafy greens)||approx 2 (varies)|
As you can see, there are MANY ways to get your protein intake from whole food, vegetarian sources. No powders needed. So, the next time you are looking for a quick fix of protein, grab a handful (or 2!) of pistachios, or spread some pistachio butter over your favourite slice of whole grain bread!
Note that this article is not intended to replace medical or nutrition advice from your medical doctor or dietitian. Please discuss changes in your diet with a registered professional.
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