Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Vegetarian Protien Sources

I make the personal choice to not eat animal meat and strongly avoid it. If I do eat animal meat, it might be in the form of crab meat or tuna maybe once a month. This is all because of many, many reasons...starting with the fact that I plain out think meat is kinda gross!! Easy enough right? I feel no deprivation by avoiding meat because I simply don't like it. But I can feel the negative effects of not eating meat when I start to feel the signs of protein deficiency.
So I try and consciously eat more protein to keep up my energy levels, health, and overall sense of a well balanced diet. These are a few of my favorite vegetarian protein sources:

Eggs: 1 Egg = 70 calories and 6 grams protein 

Eggs are natures perfect food and come equipped with healthy fats to help proper absorption of their protein. They have high concentrations of vitamins A, B, D, E, K and have calcium and zinc to boost immunity. Not only that, but they also have antioxidants that benefit eye sight such as lutein and zeaxanthin. Eggs provide zero carbohydrates...interpret as you may! Some people avoid carbs like the devil and some work best with them, just find what works for you!

How I prepare my eggs:
  • hard boiled
  • scrambled with a splash of milk
 Tried this, scrambled eggs with avocado on toast, so good !  Add a dollop of picante and you're good to go!   So-o-o-o  yummy!
I love a scrambled egg on top of toast, maybe with some avocado too!

Seeds: 1/4 cup of hulled seeds has 186 calories and 6.1 grams of protein

Seeds are a nut-allergy friendly protein source. My favorite seeds by far are sunflower seeds because they are easy to access and find in stores, unlike pumpkin seeds which are more seasonal. Sunflower seeds are high in zinc and vitamin E which is essential for healthy, hydrated skin. Vitamin E is especially important because it is an essential fatty acid lipid that can protect the skin from pollution and sun damage.

I mix sunflower seeds into my oatmeal, yogurt and salads.  I also like sunbutter, which is a perfect alternative to peanut butter.

Homemade Sunflower Seed Butter, Extra Creamy

Veggie Burgers:1 pattie by MorningStar has 114 calories and 11 grams of protein 

I am not a huge fan of veggie burgers because I find that many of them are loaded with soy protein and wacky ingredients. But these are great to make when the rest of the family is having hamburgers or deli sandwiches for lunch! They are incredibly easy to microwave and I like to garnish mine with mustard, tomato slices, and of course I sandwich it all together between two hamburger buns.

Overall, these are easy to make and usually have a substantial amount of fiber from the beans and vegetables inside them. Pretty awesome.

Greek Yogurt: 120 calories per cup and 13 grams protein

Ah, the best for last? Greek yogurt may absolutely be from the heavens! Oikos and Stonyfield are my favorite brands, but when I can find it, I love Greek yogurt by the brand 'Maple Hill Cremaery.' My personal advice is to buy the plain flavor of yogurt and then mix in the berries and sweeteners yourself. To sweeten my yogurt I like to add honey or banana, or fresh berries. Go easy on the granola, granola can easily have a lot of unhealthy fats and sugars that can take away from the healthiness of the yogurt.

Blue Hill has some awesome flavors to try that don't have a ton of weird ingredients...sweet potato was surprisingly great!


 Blue Hill takes pride in their large pastures and humane treatment to cows, which I love to know they value!

And lastly, not Soy! I don't include soy in my diet and try my best to avoid it. I will explain why in a future post (:

Good luck getting in more protein, some more protein recipes will be coming up.