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How Plant Based Proteins can nourish the 40+ Body and Mind.

November 4, 2018

 

 

 

If you are interested in embracing more Plant based foods into your daily food intake you be concerned about the options available to you for good quality “real” sources of based protein. 

You may think Meat, Chicken and Fish are the only sources and finding alternatives may be challenging but you’re wrong. 

 

I am a meat eater and do eat a lot of “Plant based” foods because I like them and certainly experience benefits to my body and mind with a balanced intake and lots of plant-based foods.  Whether you choose to follow a completely plant-based diet or not is a personal choice with many influencing factors, but exploring alternatives not only keeps our food intake interesting but allows us to experience how changes to our food can impact both our body and mind.  We are all individuals and I believe there is not one food intake that works for everyone, it’s experiencing what works for you and how your food intake not only affects your physical self but more importantly how you feel.

 

Here are my top 5 “real” plant-based sources of protein to nourish your body and mind.

The list below shows you the amount of protein that is in 100g of animal-based foods compared to 100g of plant-based foods. (in bold)

 

Protein’s main function in the body is for growth and repair and so with this in mind it’s one of the key components of a “healthy” food plan.  It’s important to eat a wide variety of protein sources in order to optimize the bodies performance.

 

100g chicken Breast = 30g

100g Lentils = 28g 

100g Salmon = 19g

100g Edamame = 18g

100ml Whole Milk = 4g

100ml Almonds = 10g

 

Source 1 - Green Vegetables

 

These are a great source of protein and provide a range of additional benefits.  One cup of spinach provides 7g or protein, 2 cups of kale 5g and 1 cup of peas 9g.  In addition, they are a great source of Potassium, Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, Vitamin C/K and are low GI. 

 

How does this help the 40+ body and mind?

In a recent study into Type 2 diabetes, an increase of 1 serving/day of green leafy vegetables was associated with a 9 percent lower risk of diabetes. The high level of vitamin K in greens makes them important for the production of osteocalcin, a protein essential for bone health. The risk of hip fracture in middle-aged women was decreased 45% for one or more servings/day of green, leafy vegetables compared to fewer servings.

 

Source 2 – Edamame

 

100g of Edamame provides the body with 18 grams of gluten free, cholesterol free protein.  Edamame are also low in calories and they are an excellent source of protein, iron, and calcium.   Edamame is a complete source of dietary protein, meaning in one food source it provides all the essential amino acids needed in the diet that humans cannot make themselves. 

 

How does this help the 40+ body and mind?

Soy foods contain isoflavones, a type of compound known as phytoestrogens that have been linked to a lower risk for osteoporosis.

 

Source 3: Tofu

 

100g Tofu provides up to 15g of protein.  It’s another complete source of protein containing all the essential amino acids, the building blocks of protein.  Tofu is a wonderful source of Iron, Magnesium, Selenium which increases immunity and helps maintain a healthy metabolism, Phosphorus, Zinc and Vitamin B.

 

How does this help the 40+ body and mind?

The phytoestrogen content of soya is very beneficial to women as they enter the menopause.  During this phase the body’s natural production of oestrogen stops and symptoms may arise such as hot flushes.   Phytoestrogens act as a weak oestrogen, helping relieve symptoms by boosting levels slightly, reducing hot flushes in some women. 

 

Source 4 – Lentils

 

100g lentils provides the body with10 grams protein.  Often called a nutrition powerhouse lentils are a great source of many nutrients including, Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus , Iron, NSP (Fibre)   Lentils are one of the most alkaline protein sources there is, which is important for balancing the body’s pH level and promoting a healthy gut environment. When the digestive system becomes too acidic , which can result from eating processed foods high in sugar or fried foods, an imbalance in bacteria develops that can lead to numerous health problems.

 

How does this help the 40+ body and mind?

By combating an acidic environment of the gut and promoting healthy bacterial growth, absorption of nutrients is improved which can help with naturally preventing IBS, indigestion, constipation and many other diseases, too.

 

Source 5 – Non-diary milk

 

There are many options of dairy alternative milks on the shelves and these can be valuable sources of protein, 250 ml Soy milk provides 9g of protein, 250ml of almond milk provides 7-9g of protein.  If you make your own using 250g of almonds provides 24 g of protein.  Unlike dairy milk, almond milk does not contain any lactose (sugar found in dairy products) and is suitable for those that are lactose intolerance.  Almond milk is also a good source of Calcium, Potassium, NSP, Vitamin A/B/D/E and is cholesterol free.

 

How does this help the 40+ body and mind?

The complete lack of cholesterol in almond milk promotes a strong and healthy heart.  Research studies suggest that consumption of almonds may help in reducing the risk of coronary heart disease.  Almond milk is a good source of potassium in the body which is a key element that can act to widen of blood vessels and reduce tension and strain on the heart.

 

And finally 

“The most comprehensive controlled trial of diet and mood finds that a plant-based nutrition program in a workplace setting across ten corporate sites significantly improves depression, anxiety, and productivity.” (www.nutritionfacts.org)

 

If you’d like to find receive 5 FREE Plant Based recipes suitable for quick and easy lunches and snacks sign up below.

 

https://mailchi.mp/2ebf731b2de3/bhm4uo5cuf

 

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