3 Vegan Protein Sources to Implement into Your Diet
By: Jenn Moss
The main argument that die-hard meat eaters always come back to when critiquing the vegan diet, is the lack of protein. Typically meat such as chicken, pork, beef, etc, have higher amounts of protein. With meat depleted from the diet, perhaps meat-eaters can not fathom the idea that there are other sources that can do the same job. However, there are lots of great vegan protein sources out there, and you just might be surprised how easy it is to implement it into your everyday lifestyle.
Although you may like having meat in your life, it is interesting to think that you do not need it. Many plant-based protein sources can easily be used in replacement. These options are a lot healthier for you, and implementing these switches may result in a decrease of meat-linked diseases such as cancer, heart disease, harmful cholesterol, diabetes, etc.
Here are some swaps you may want to consider:
Lentils are made for more than just lentil soup. These small legumes are protein-packed, high in fiber, and low in fat. They contain a whopping 18 grams of protein per cup. In a way, they do resemble small bits of beef and may be used interchangeably, such as in chili, curries, lentil burgers, and stir-fries to simply name a few.
2. Tofu, Tempeh, and Edamame
Often found in Asian cuisine, these three options all derive from the soybean. If you are someone who is allergic to soy or avoiding soy for any other reasons, this may not be a good option for you. But for those who jive well with soy, adding these in replacement of meat is a great option. If deciding not to go the Asian route, you may also consider marinating the tofu and tempeh in bbq sauce. The great thing about these options is that it easily absorbs any flavor you put on it.
3. Nutritional Yeast
This can be a great alternative to use instead of cheese. It is great sprinkled on spaghetti, popcorn, soup, avocado toast, salads, and dressings. Despite its name, it is not a yeast that can be used in baking but rather seen as a seasoning. Nutritional yeast is also a powerhouse of nutritional value, containing the full spectrum of vitamin D, fiber, and is a complete source of protein.
Here are just three of the many other protein sources available. Some others include beans, pasta, and quinoa. These options are readily available at your local grocery store, or health food specialty store. Eating healthy does not have to be expensive, there are many whole food protein options that you can implement into your diet, and actually, it may be less money in the long run as meat can be expensive.