March 20, 2018

Where do You Get Your Protein

Note: this post has been updated in February 2022.

The Great Protein Myth

Protein is one of the six Essential Nutrients that are necessary for energy and materials for life building processes in the human body. Thus, the term essential nutrients.

The question that I get asked most often: “Where do you get your protein?” It is a common fact that my family and friends know that I do not eat meat or dairy and they are not concerned whether I am getting enough protein. They know I am getting protein I need from plants.  My answer is that as a whole food plant-based individual who eats varied meals containing vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds.  I rarely have any difficulty getting enough protein. Of course, you must be sure your diet contains enough energy (calories) to maintain weight.

Get your Protein from the food

Below is an image of a great meal "Raise the Roof Sweet Potato Lasagna" from Engine 2 recipes. This meal includes the complete proteins that we all need in our diet. If you eat complete meals like this, you never need to be concerned about protein.

Where do you get your protein

Outside influence on what we eat

The present government agencies are heavily influenced by the pharmaceutical, dairy and the meat industries and the substantial amounts of money spent to influence decisions. The dairy and meat industries particularly have gone to great lengths to keep us thinking that the only way for us to get adequate protein is by drinking milk or eating meat. These industries are huge and have large advertising budgets. Many of their corporate executives set on government boards that influence the decision process. These industries have a great deal to lose if there is a paradigm to switch away from dairy and meat. Their power and influence will become less of a factor as more individuals start eating a plant-based diet. See: Healthy diet and Industry Intrusion

View the video to see marketing a product at its finest.

How much protein do I need?

In the United States, the DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram body weight, or 0.36 grams per pound. This amounts to:

  • 56 grams per day for the average sedentary man.
  • 46 grams per day for the average sedentary woman.

This equates to 10-15 percent of your total calories—remember that every gram of protein has four calories. Vegetarians and vegans easily get this amount of protein. - information adapted from PETA- How Much Protein Do I Need?

Time to act

Science confirms that a diet rich in whole, plant-based foods can help you live to the fullest and still get adequate protein. In fact, a growing number of physicians advocate a completely plant-based diet for many of their patients who suffer from diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

Check out these great sources Plant-Based Nutrition, 2E (Idiot’s Guides),

Nutrition Facts: The Truth About Food and

 The Forks Over Knives Plan

The Forks over Knifes, a simple plan that focuses on hearty comfort foods and does not involve portion control or worrying about obtaining single nutrients like protein and calcium.

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Express your Opinion

How do you think? Most people eat too much protein. Have you ever heard of anyone that has been told that they have a protein deficiency?

If I can answer any questions or if you have an opinion that you would like to express, please let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

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