February Refresh: Pounce On That Plant Protein!

08.02.18 Eat, Learn Blog SumoSalad

There are many misconceptions that protein is only obtainable from animals. Thankfully, this view is becoming increasingly outdated as more people become educated on protein and plant-based diets.

Protein is extremely important as it is a component of every cell in your body – your hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses it to build and repair tissue, you need it to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals and it is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.

There are more than 10,000 different types of proteins in our bodies, which are made up of 22 amino acids. What are amino acids you ask? They are the building blocks of proteins that link together in different ways to determine which type of protein will be formed.

Of the 22 amino acids that our body needs, nine are considered “essential”. Unlike “non-essential” amino acids, which are produced by our bodies, we need to obtain essential proteins from our diet. Many will argue that many plant-based proteins do not contain all nine essential amino acids and are deficient, making them useless and ineffective as a viable protein source.

However, by combining different sources of plant proteins you can easily create a complete amino acid profile. There’s actually a lot of overlap when it comes to ‘sources’ of these essential amino acids. Which means variety in your diet is so much more important than how much of one particular food you eat. The greater the assortment of foods, the greater the odds are of you getting all of the essential amino acids your body needs.

People also generally think they need a ton of protein for each meal in order to be healthy and active. But this isn’t correct. Your body actually collects amino acids over the course of the day and binds them together as needed. With a balanced diet and variety of foods, you can build muscle, lose fat and stay healthy with plant proteins.

There are also plenty of “complete” plant-based options available. Quinoa is an example of a complete source that contains essential fatty acids along with being gluten-free. Hemp seed is another not only complete it’s also rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Soy, buckwheat, rice & beans (when combined) all contain the nine essential amino acids. As long as foods like legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, fruits and vegetables are consumed daily, you’re getting everything you need and more.

So if you want to dip your toe in a healthier lifestyle and support a more animal-friendly world, here are three easy steps to make it happen:

Join our Sumo movement and go meat free one day a week

Did someone say Meat Free Mondays?! There are plenty of mouth-watering breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas made exclusively from whole, plant-based foods. Our Design Your Own option also allows you to create delicious meat-free dishes with the tap of your finger. It doesn’t get much easier than that!

Start With Small Steps
If you can’t go meat-free all day, why not start with trying to make one meal a day plant-based. Once you realise how easy and delicious it can be, we are sure you will be embracing meat-free in no time!

Reimagine Your Favourites
Recreate your favourite foods or purchase them without meat or dairy. Pasta, pizza, soups and bowls are the perfect meals to go meat-free. Check out our blog post here for some inspiration – https://sumosalad.com/summeroflex/  


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