How To Increase Protein Intake On A Plant-Based Lifestyle

 

Whether you’re a fitness fanatic or you just want to feel a little more healthy, eating an adequate supply of protein is really important. If you’re a vegetarian, vegan or just someone that is following a plant-based diet, then it may seem that getting more protein is much harder.

But I’m here to show you how easy it can be. So, whether you’re building muscle or trying to lose weight, protein is required for optimal performance. In this article I explain a few different ways to achieve increase your intake.

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Focus On Diet First

First and foremost, before you consider using supplements, focus on naturally increasing your protein intake with your diet. Now for vegans and plant-based only dieters, this means that eggs and cheese are off the list.

Here’s a simple list to help you get started.

  • Vegetables: Veggies can provide you with a good amount of protein. You’ll find about 3 grams of protein in 100 grams of Broccoli or Spinach.
  • Quinoa: This seed contains up to to 5 grams of protein per 100 and it contains all of the essential amino acids.
  • Tofu: If you’ve recently switched from a meat-based diet then tofu can act like a great substitute in a variety of dishes. Tofu contains around 8 grams of protein per 100.
  • Cheese Substitutes: There’s a great selection of cheese substitute products available in all major supermarkets today that are typically made from coconut or soy. These can be a great addition to any meal or to use as a snack during the day.

For a more comprehensive guide for those interested in a plant-based diet, an article I recently wrote “A High Protein Vegan Diet Plan” is a great place to start.

Protein Powder

A simple, tried and true method for increasing your protein intake is by using a protein powder. There are so many to choose from on the market that you really are spoilt for choice now. However, I recommend that the one you choose should be based on your current fitness goals.

For those looking to bulk up, choose a powder with a higher amount of carbohydrates per serving. The increase in carbs will help to replenish your glycogen stores after a heavy weights workout.

And my advice for those looking to lose weight is the complete opposite. Pick a powder with lower amounts of carbs and sugars.

Here’s a great article to help you decide on the best type of protein for you.

If you’re wondering when you should consume a protein shake, here are a few good ideas.

  • Try one for breakfast: Blend your favourite protein powder with some fruit and veggies, and you’ll have yourself a highly nutritious breakfast to start your day.
  • Post-workout: After a workout, your muscles are depleted so give them what they want! Protein powders are easily digested making them perfect for after the gym.

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Snack Bars

First came the cereal bar, next came granola bars, and now it’s the time of the protein bar. Big brands such as Mars & Snickers have jumped onto this trend and released protein-based versions of their popular chocolate bars. However, please be aware these are usually loaded full of sugar whilst providing lower amounts of protein.

Nutritious protein bars can be more convenient than powder because you can take them with you. If you’re in a rush just grab a protein bar and chuck it in your bag. Now you have a nutritious snack to eat whenever you like. They also make for a great breakfast replacement.

If you decide to use a protein bar, I recommend that you look out for products that are:

  • High in protein
  • Less than 20g of sugar
  • No additives or sugar alcohols used
  • Palm or sunflower oil free
  • Free from gluten, wheat, soya where possible

There you have it, three great ways to increase your protein intake throughout the day. First focus on improving the foods you eat with each meal, then add in protein powders or bars for convenience.

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Brad writes about health & nutrition for NutreeLife, a protein company that exclusively create plant-based proteins bars and snacks. NutreeLife are on a mission to provide the healthiest nutrition products on the market, that are free from additives and made using all-natural ingredients.

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