Going Meatless? 5 Facts You Should Know

Whether you’re going meatless for a meal, or month or longer, your body still needs protein so here are 5 facts you need to know.

Fact 1 – The human body creates 11 amino acids but must get another nine from food. Animal products are complete proteins, meaning they contain all the amino acids. Some plant products, such as soya beans and quinoa, are also complete proteins while others are incomplete proteins.

If you’re going meatless, you need to eat a wide range of plant based protein to get the required range of amino acids.

Fact 2 – If weight loss is your goal, it may be difficult to get all your protein needs met with plant based options because in order to get a complete protein, you may also be getting a lot of carbs which may put you over your calorie requirements.

For example, black beans & rice are a complete protein but in order to get 24g of protein, you’ll also get 141g of carbs and 660 calories.

Fact 3 – Yes, you can get all your protein needs from plants, but keep in mind that proteins digest differently.

Plant proteins are range from 60-80% digestibility depending on the source and animal based sources have been consistently shown to have over 90% digestibility.

This means that you’ll need to eat MORE plant based protein to get your daily requirement.

Fact 4- A concern of animal protein is the associated saturated fat intake. If you eat meat with no regard for fat intake, you could also go over your calorie requirements & also put yourself at risk for health issues.

This can be mitigated by more awareness, for example, choosing leaner meats or taking skin off chicken, etc.

Fact 5- Higher protein needs are required for athletic populations. Whey protein has one of the highest bio-availability & fastest digestion rates so its a great option for post workout. Casein protein digests more slowly & is a great option for protein synthesis for a prolonged duration.

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Research from here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3905294/