learn more about protein
WHAT IS PROTEIN?
Protein is a component of food, made up of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks for major parts of a lean human body. They are crucial to the minute-by-minute regulation and maintenance of the body. Your body makes its own supply of amino acids, and also must get some from food. Protein comes in many different forms.
Protein is the basic building block of cells and tissues that are needed to keep us strong.
It is crucial for vital functions, regulation, and maintenance of our bodies.
Current diet trends encourage an increase in protein consumption (and carbohydrate reduction).
There is another belief system that we do not need a lot of protein, and encourages people to eat much less protein. There is a very judgmental attitude in the field of nutrition, i.e., “my way is the only way.” However, there must be a way that is not dogmatic.
Try experimenting and see what works for you, your body, and your lifestyle.
TOO LITTLE PROTEIN
Common symptoms include sugar and sweet cravings, feeling spacey and jittery, fatigue, weight loss, loss of healthy color in facial area, feeling weak, anemia, change in hair color and texture, skin inflammation (in severe cases), and pot belly (in severe cases).
TOO MUCH PROTEIN
Common symptoms include low energy, constipation, dehydration, lethargy, heavy feeling, weight gain, sweet cravings, feeling “tight” or stiff joints, foul body odor, halitosis, and calcium loss to compensate for acidic status in body.
The body may also become overly acidic and kidney function can decline. (Stress required to process excess proteins causes the kidney to face increased pressure to filter toxins and waste).
THINGS TO CONSIDER
Your mind may disagree with what your body wants. Trust your body. It is rare for people in this day and age to be protein deficient. Consider your heritage, ancestry, blood type, activity level, and life goals when choosing protein.
Protein consumption is a very personal thing – everyone needs a different amount.
protein rich recipe & vegan sources of protein
It is still summer, at least in Zürich, Switzerland where I live. And even though we had quite a few rainy days, I enjoy spending time outside. Especially when I go running I watch my protein after exercising.
This is how I came up with this delicious smoothie providing good protein.
my super protein shake
• 1-2 bananas (fresh or frozen)
• 1 cup of spinach, kale or swiss chard
• 1 teaspoon peanut butter
• 1/2 teaspoon hemp protein
• 1/2 teaspoon raw cacao
or (instead of hemp & cacao)
• 1 teaspoon any kind of protein powder
optional you can add a date for more sweetness, the protein powder I currently use already contains natural sweetener and cacao, which decently feeds my sweet tooth but still gives me a good boost after my runs.
vegan sources of protein
• grains (rice, millet, quinoa, buckwheat, oats and oatmeal)
• beans (fresh beans that are smaller like split peas, mung and adzuki beans)
• soy (edamame, tofu, tempeh, miso, tamari)
• soymilk (unsweetened)
• nuts (peanuts)
• leafy greens (brokkoli, spinach, kale, collard greens, bok choi, romaine lettuce, watercress
HOW TO MAKE DIGESTION EASIER
Gas and upset stomachs are a common side-effect of bean consumption. To reduce your chances of these effects, try these suggestions:
• Soak beans for several days.
• Use a pressure cooker.
• Chew beans thoroughly.
• Avoid feeding legumes to children under 18 months.
• Experiment with different sizes of beans
– smaller beans like lentils and peas digest most easily.
– soybeans and black soybeans are often most difficult to digest.
• Season with a digestive aid, such as sea salt.
• Add fennel or cumin to help prevent gas.
• Use apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar to soften the beans and make them more digestible.