Protein is an essential part of everyone’s diet; and if you’re a vegetarian, then it is important to understand the best sources of protein for your dietary preference. Without meat as a protein source, vegetarians need to rely on a variety of foods that offer the proteins their bodies desperately need. If protein, or iron, is lacking in your diet then you run the risk of becoming anemic but it is very possible to enjoy a healthy, well-balanced – and even tasty diet without meat.
Chickpeas are filled with protein and are considered the best choice for vegetarians to get their protein source. Only 200g of chickpeas can offer you 16g of protein. Regularly including chickpea to your diet will help your body get the proteins you need.
Tofu is often used as a meat alternative and can be used to make a choice of delicious meals. Tofu is not only rich in protein; it also includes essential iron and magnesium. 140g of Tofu will give you 11g of protein.
Many of us steer away from peanut butter as it’s considered fattening. But it is an excellent source of protein when eaten in moderation. 30g of peanut butter can offer 7g of protein. Adding some peanut butter on toast every now and again can top up your protein requirement for the day.
Baked beans are renowned for being a firm favorite in the UK, but can be enjoyed anywhere in the world. These are also a great protein source, offering you 12g of protein per 200g of baked beans.
Almonds are a fantastic option as a light snack between meals where you can get 8g of protein from a quarter cup of almonds. Keep some on your desk and enjoy them throughout the day to get the protein you need in your diet.
Soy is a favorite alternative for vegetarians and is rich in proteins. Adding soy milk to your cereal or coffee in the morning (or any part of the day) can help you maintain a protein rich diet. You even get 7g of protein to every 8 ounces of soy milk.
Yogurt is another delicious and healthy snack alternative between meals, but it also offers you up to 13g of protein in one pot. Enjoy a yogurt as a dessert alternative after a meal, and throw in some fruit and nuts to add more flavor (and proteins for the latter).
Lentils are very rich in protein and should be regularly added to your diet. You get 18g of protein per cup of cooked lentils and they can be added to just about any style of dish, whether it be Indian, Moroccan, or Italian, to name but a few.
If you are having a salad for lunch, don’t forget to throw in the avocado. Avocado is a good source of protein that offers 10g of protein to your diet. Nonsense fact: it’s also the one food that you live on solely without dying.
We all know that eggs are a good source of protein, but the endless variations for how they can be used makes them a staple ingredient for many dishes – whether you eat them with toast or hard boiled and added to a salad. Each egg offers 6g of protein.
If you are already a vegetarian or you are considering becoming a vegetarian, there are so many ways to add protein to your diet without the need for meat. If you follow a careful diet and ensure you add the necessary levels of protein rich items to your diet, your body will enjoy all the benefits it needs to keep you healthy.
This useful list was compiled by the health gurus at PolicyExpert.co.uk.