Upping Your Protein Intake While Upping Your Plant Intake

It seems that more and more people are increasing their plant intake and decreasing their meat intake. While eating a more plant-based diet has many benefits, you may end up skimping on your protein. To know about how much protein you should be eating a day, do this simple calculation: Body weight (in pounds) x 0.36 = recommended protein intake (in grams). If you have any health conditions or are pregnant or nursing then have a chat with your doctor; your body might do better with a different amount of protein!

Here are four great sources of plant protein to help you stick with a more plant-based diet and still eat enough protein:

Black beans: Black beans make a great addition to any meal. One cup of cooked black beans will give you about 15 grams of your daily protein with almost no fat.

Peanut butter: Peanut butter seems to be everyone’s favorite snack—and for good reason too! You can get an easy 8 grams of protein by eating about two tablespoons of peanut butter. Remember to not go overboard on your serving size though. An easy way to know how much you are eating is to use the larger of the spoon sizes likely sitting in your utensil drawer. As long as you don’t pile the peanut butter on your spoon, then you can know you are getting one tablespoon with each spoonful.

Soymilk: Soy foods are arguably the best plant-based source of protein because they are a complete protein. With this in mind, add a cup of soymilk to your daily diet. You will be bringing in 8 grams of protein with only around 100 calories!

Peas: Surprise! Even though it wouldn’t seem like it, peas are a high source of plant protein. One cup has 9 grams of protein and only about 130 calories. What is even better is that is that peas can go from the freezer to your plate in less than five minutes. All you have to do is pop some in a microwavable bowl with water, put the bowl in the microwave for a few minutes, drain the water, and add any salt or butter!
 

If you are eating a more plant-based diet and aren’t purposefully eating protein, then you  may not get enough protein. Adding these four foods to your diet will help you continue eating low or no levels of meat while getting the protein your body needs!

References

http://www.pcrm.org/health/diets/vegdiets/how-can-i-get-enough-protein-the-protein-myth

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3905294/

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/vegetables-beans-and-peas