Three Protein Alternatives
Protein is a valuable source for all of us. It helps us build and sustain our muscles, which help us in everyday activities and are even more important for us if we’re athletes.
Although for most of our lives we’ve been feed the idea that meat is the way to go to get all the protein we need, there are other options that are just as good that also highly nutritious. These alternative protein sources can work well with people who try to avoid eating meat in their diet but also gives people who do more variety of food options.
Being half Japanese, I grew up with tofu in my house and ate plenty of it. Nothing beats pan-fried tofu in soy sauce, garlic, and daishi with a side of Japanese rice.
Tofu can have up to 17g of protein per 100 grams so it’s a great source of protein. The best part of tofu is that it’s a blank canvas. You can flavor it however you want. Along with the ability to be flavored to your liking, iron and calcium are also found within it.
From chilli, having them on the side of your main dish, inside burritos or on top of tostadas, or even just mixing them with rice, beans are amazing. Ranging from black beans to all the way to garbanzo beans, beans taste great.
Beans are loaded with fiber which helps our digestive health and can contain up to 19g of protein per 100g. Along with fiber, beans are a nice source of complex carbs. These type of carbs are slowly digested so you’ll have a longer source of energy when you eat them.
A favorite quick snack of mine that can be delicious and be loaded with protein along with other nutrients depending on what you add to it. Per 100 g you’re getting a solid 10g but you can add to that protein content by added oats, nuts, or even granola.
While you can get a hold of already flavored yogurt, I try to get plain and add other foods/fruits to it so I have a better control of what’s going on in it. I love throwing in grapes and all different types of berries. If you like to get already flavored yogurt, you can buy low or non –sugar packets as well. Just be mindful and watch the sugar content.
Protein is often directly associated with meat but it doesn’t need to be. There are plenty of other protein options you can incorporate into your diet that can help get you your proficient amount of protein everyday. The three foods that are listed above are just some great examples that I myself find useful and delicious to eat. Definitely try them out if you haven’t, variety is the spice of life!
Brandon Brelsford is one of the trainers at Olympia Fitness and Performance. He graduated from Rhode Island College with a B.S. in Community Health and Wellness with a concentration in Wellness and Movement Studies. After graduating, Brandon obtained his CSCS (certified strength and conditioning specialist) from the NSCA. Brandon enjoys helping his clients realize what they’re truly capable of and enjoys seeing their growth in and out of the gym.