A question often asked and debated is can you gain sufficient protein from a vegan diet. For many people their primary source of protein is from the meat and dairy product they consume, but what happens if you cut all of this out of your diet?
If you have a well planned vegan diet, measured all your macros and know exactly how much protein you need and which sources you can get them from then you may not need vegan protein powder.
However – this is no easy feat. Many Vegans take Vegan Protein Powder as it is an awesome tasting and convenient way to reach your protein requirements with ease without adding additional calories to your diet too.
Nearly all plants, grains, lentils, beans nuts and seeds all contain sources of protein, though in much smaller quantities than meat, and as such requires you to eat more to sustain the same amount of amino acids and proteins you would consume while eating meat and dairy products.
This is attainable for those who do not take part in physical exercise, but if you’re wanting to gain muscle mass then you may struggle to eat adequate amounts of protein from your vegan diet without the help of Vegan Protein Powder.
How Much Protein do I Need?
So we already know the importance of protein in our body, from helping to maintain and build muscle mass to helping our body create energy. How much protein you need to consume is very much dependant on personal factors and activity levels. For example, someone that takes part in intense weight training every day will require more protein than someone who sits at a desk every day.
Initially, it was thought that an athlete had no need to consume more protein than the recommended daily allowance (Jager et al. 2017). However, as we see technological advancements in scientific research has now shown that athletes who consumed about two times the RDA may see more benefits when training. (Lemon et al. 1992) It’s said to maintain a sufficient nitrogen balance through protein consumption 1.8-2.0g of protein per kilogram of body weight per day is needed. If this is not met by the athlete he/she will develop and maintain a negative nitrogen balance, indicating protein catabolism and slow recovery (Phillips et al. 2016), of which over time can lead to muscle wastage, injuries, illness and training intolerance. (Phillips et al. 2011)
For those who do not participate in sport, and just looking at optimising their health, research suggests that protein needs may still be over the recommended daily allowance. Witard et al ( 2016), Jager et al (2017) and Tipton et al (79) all reported similar findings with evidence suggesting that optimal protein intakes should be between 1.2-2 g/kg/day.
Vegan Foods vs Non-Vegan Foods Protein Amounts
To give you a bit of an idea of the amount of protein you can find in vegan foods compared to non-vegan, we’ve selected some of the highest protein below for a comparison, giving you a bit of an idea of how much you may need to eat.
It’s also important to note that plant protein is also much harder for the body to process than meat protein and as such, this means less is absorbed by your body.
|Vegan Foods||Protein (Per 100g)||Non-Vegan Foods||Protein (Per 100g)|
Not only do you need to eat much more to hit your protein requirements but due to plants being high in fibre (this isn’t a bad thing), they have a higher rate of satiety, which is the feeling of being full, so you may struggle to each adequate amounts, which is where Vegan Protein Powder can help save the day.
Why Is Vegan Protein Powder So Good?
Not only does Vegan Protein Powder allow you to reach your protein numbers with ease but if you choose the right one it can also taste pretty good too. Often with Vegan Protein powders, it is a blend of a few different plant proteins. What this means is it provides your body with both a sustained release and instant release of amino acids, so you can trigger protein synthesis through the day and help build and repair muscles.
As we’ve said previously you must eat much more to reach your protein targets when on a vegan diet. As with a lot of plants, calories are low but volume is high, meaning that you can feel full very easily. For those that contain high protein content such as peanuts, they can contain fats and carbohydrates that you may be wanting to reduce depending on your physique goals. This is where vegan protein can help, boosting your protein intake, without making you feel full and affecting other macronutrients, keeping the balance just right.
There are a number of different variants of vegan protein powders, from your standard protein to meal replacements to mass gainers and everything in between. Take a look at some of our top vegan proteins below.