Enough Protein on a Vegetarian Diet? Impossible!

Food & Party 7

whole wheat pastaSound familiar? My mom says this to me daily. The "protein myth" often comes up in conversations about vegetarian diets and cutting down on meat consumption. This misconception holds that meat is the best source of protein and, therefore, people who don't eat meat or eat less meat (like Mr. Cafe Kim and I are trying to do) aren't getting enough protein.

This belief simply isn't true. Mr Cafe Kim and I have found that we've had to be a little more creative about how we include protein in each meal on our "less meat" diet. But there are plenty of ways to get enough protein from plant sources. Here is one of our favorites...

Whole wheat pasta!

Most whole wheat pastas have a higher protein content than regular pasta. Typically, most brands have 7-10g of protein per serving. (Generally, between 10 percent and 15 percent of your total calories should come from protein.)

We've been making a lot of meals lately with whole wheat pasta. Vegetable lasagna (using whole wheat noodles, pasta sauce, ricotta and cottage cheese, and spinach, mushrooms, and zucchini) is a breeze to make. Or, sometimes for a quick meal, we throw a package of frozen veggies into boiling pasta water with the pasta, and they cook at the same time. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top, and you've got a balanced meal with carbs, protein, fiber, and healthy fat.

Besides eating meat, how else do you make sure your diet includes enough protein?

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RanaA... RanaAurora

This myth cracks me up.  If people think you only get protein from meat, they REALLY have no idea what they even eat!

Good sources of protein for a vegetarian, and some are vegan:  Eggs, cheese, milk, beans, nuts, tofu, bread, artichokes, apples, bananas, seeds... even things like broccoli are a decent (though not powerhouse) source.

Midni... Midnite00

don't forget that potatoes, sweet potatoes and even Bulgar wheat has protein

nonmember avatar Melissa Daniell

A friend of mine was recently told he was eating too much protein - high levels are showing up in his blood.

How's that for a mythbuster?

auror... aurorabunny

Most folks who eat a standard american diet (including meat) get 3-4 times the amount of protein that they need on a daily basis.  All of that extra protein just turns into fat and causes health problems.  So the protein myth is a funny one indeed.

danie... daniellesalow

milk, peanut butter, soybeans - even some cereals have protein.

tazdvl tazdvl

cheese, nuts and eggs

sodapple sodapple

i use whole grain pasta and even my oldest likes it! considering that she is not fond of sauce or meat with her pasta, the pasta serves as a good trick =-D

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