10 of the Best Vegetable Protein Sources
Some of the Best Vegetable Protein Sources
When you hear the word athlete, it's natural to assume or picture a big, muscular, hard bodied man or Amazon woman. Athletes are always looking for that edge in whatever sport/competition they are competing in. So this raises the question of which is better for the body, animal proteins or vegetable proteins? It has been asked a billion times and will keep being asked as long as there is not a definitive answer. Can you develop big, chiseled muscles being a vegetarian? In the animal kingdom, it's the the big predators or meat eaters that are the biggest, meanest and rule the land. I'm not insinuating you can't be a big, bad and mean vegetarian. It will be a little more difficult without consuming animal proteins, but it can and has been done before. In fact, there are numerous professional athletes that were very successful in their sport/field and were vegetarian by choice. Athletes such as Joe Namath, Super bowl Champion, Hall of Fame quarterback of the New York Jets, Bill Pearl, A four time Mr. Universe body building champion, Robert Parrish, NBA Championship center of the Boston Celtics, Billy Jean King and Martina Navratilova, professional tennis stars that dominated the sport, and even current MLB (Major League Baseball) player, Detroit Tiger first basemen, Prince Fielder are all vegetarians. There have been so many productive athletes that are vegetarian which keeps the fire in the argument of which source of proteins is better going. Me personally, I don't think I could go without red meat, but that's just me and my opinion. If vegetable proteins are your choice, these are some of the best protein sources you can find, and their right outside in the garden.
Which vegetables do you eat the most?
If your not a Certified Personal Trainer, dietician or nutritionist, then more than likely you may be unaware of how to determine the protein composition of the food you consume. The first question you might ask is how do you know the protein composition of what you're eating. You can easily start to figure this out by reading the nutritional facts label on the food product. For example you buy a product, that says it has 250 calories per serving. The label also states that it offers 6 grams of protein, per serving. Since protein provides you with 4 calories per gram, that would mean that only 24 of those 250 calories actually come from protein (4 calories times 6 grams of protein per serving). Proteins can come in many different sources. Animal proteins are normally more complete than vegetable proteins, because of the amino acids contained in them. Vegetable proteins will not contain all the different sources of proteins.
Shredded Brussels Sprouts
Shredded Brussels Sprouts
- 1/2 lb Sliced Bacon, Optional
- 1/4 cup Butter, or subsitute
- 2/3 cup Pine nuts
- 2 lbs Brussels Sprouts, Cored and shredded
- 3 Green Onions, minced
- 1/2 tablespoon Seasoning Salt, pepper to taste
Top Vegetable Protein Sources
If you remember watching Pop eye the Sailor man when you were a kid growing up, he would always down a can of Spinach, making him a lot stronger and able to beat down the hated and much larger Bluto. Well Pop eye actually made the right call on his favorite vegetable of choice. Spinach, is very low in calories and an excellent source vitamins and minerals, happens to be the best source of vegetable proteins with a protein composition of approximately 49%. Kale is not quite as popular as Spinach, however it's very rich in nutrients and better known for it's extraordinary health benefits which include the lowering of overall cholesterol and protecting from cancers comes in second place with a protein composition of 46%. I think it's a safe assessment to say that most of us hated eating Broccoli growing up as a kid, but with a high content of potassium in it which assists in maintaining the nervous system and brain function, the magnesium that helps regulate blood pressure and the Vitamin C that fights free radicals, it comes in a close third with a 45% protein composition. Part of the cabbage family, broccoli also has cholesterol lowering properties. Cauliflower, like broccoli is part of the cabbage family as well, is reproduced by seeds and comes in several different colors (white, green, or purple). A very good source of vitamin C and manganese, has antioxidant benefits and have been associated with the prevention of different types of cancer and cataracts, comes in fourth place with a composition of about 40%. Mushrooms will round out the top five coming in at 39%. Rich in vitamins and minerals, you can pretty much top anything with mushrooms.
Shredded Brussels Sprouts
|Serving size: One serving|
|Calories from Fat||144|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 16 g||25%|
|Carbohydrates 12 g||4%|
|Sugar 0 g|
|Fiber 5 g||20%|
|Protein 10 g||20%|
|Cholesterol 26 mg||9%|
|Sodium 344 mg||14%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
Rating Shredded Brussels Sprouts
Other Vegetable & Non-Meat Protein Sources
There are many other vegetables of choice that you can get a good source of protein from. Green peas, cabbage, parsley slides, green peppers, and cucumbers all have a protein composition between 24 and 34%. If you like tomatoes in or on everything, their composition is around 20%. Even the protein sources that are meat are really not that pure all by themselves. Sources such as Eggs (13%), Chicken (24%) and Beef (26%), which are the most popular choices of most people, athletes or otherwise, as you can see by their numbers, need to be combined with others to ensure the best possible nutritional and health benefits. Whether your an elite athlete, gym rat, or just trying to stay in shape and maintain your health, your diet should consist of a variety of different proteins from milk, eggs, whey and the afore mentioned vegetables on a daily basis, especially if building big muscle is on your agenda. A variety of different types of nuts, beans and tofu are also good sources of non meat proteins. However if you have some kind of underlying health condition that limits your consumption of meat or not eating meat and vegetarian is just your choice of lifestyle, the vegetables listed above can provide your body with the adequate amount of necessary protein that it requires on a day to day basis, while keeping you healthy, in shape and able to have the same productivity athletically as the big meat eaters.
More links with information on protein
- Where do you get your Protein from? Diet vs protein shakes
What does your body process faster? The protein you get from your every day diet or the whey protein from supplemental drinks? This article will explore the difference.
- 12 of the Top Sources of Protein
This article will explore which foods and supplements have the best protein type and the best ratio of protein.