For many years, there’s been a lot of debate surrounding which protein source is better: animal or plant? We advocate switching to a plant-based diet to help reach your goals, be it for gaining muscle, losing fat, and achieving your fitness goals.
Today we will debunk some of the misconceptions surrounding plant-based protein. Here are some of them:
Plant based protein is absorbed less than animal based protein.
Studies show that all animal food sources have a protein digestibility rating of at least 10% higher than plant-based food sources. At this point, animal protein wins over plant based protein.
This is based on the “protein digestibility” of a person. It refers to the percentage of protein in food that your body can absorb. So if you eat 20 grams of protein and your body absorbs 18 grams, then that food source has a protein digestibility of 90%.
However, animal based proteins are known to cause allergies and intolerance in some people. This is especially true in milk-based proteins such as whey and casein. You might be taking a “high quality” isolate so there’s very little lactose. But the protein factors present in whey are all highly allergenic.
If you feel bloated, constipated, or have a stuffy nosed after consuming your protein shake, you may be allergic to whey. Switching to plant based protein may be the better option for you.
Plant based proteins are also packed with nutrients that you can’t get from animal foods. These include essential vitamins such as D3, K2, and B12. Some plant based protein powder supplements even have antioxidants, pre and probiotics, and digestive enzymes that you wouldn’t find on animal-based protein supplements.
A plant based protein diet also come with more benefits, such as:
Low in saturated fat
Diets that are highly dependent on animal sources come with increased levels of blood cholesterol and saturated fat, which can clog your arteries. This increases the risk for cardiovascular diseases as the years go by. Lean meats also contain carcinogens, bacteria, and possibly hormones and antibiotics.
Easy to digest
While animal food sources have a higher protein digestibility rating, plant-based foods are still very easy to digest. Plant-based food sources also contain fiber, which helps normalize bowel movements, lower cholesterol levels, and maintaining a healthy body weight.
Good for the environment
This is an often overlooked reason, but we know many people who switched to vegetable protein purely because of ethical reasons. And why not? Animal food sources take a lot more energy and fuel to produce than plant products. Switching to plant-based foods reduces carbon footprint and leads to a less harmful consumption for the planet.
I might not get all the essential amino acids with a plant-based protein diet.
Let’s lay down some facts first. Your body needs nine essential amino acids or EAA that it can’t produce on its own. In short, you must get it from the food you eat. And there are quite a few number of plant-based foods that are complete with EAAs. Some of them include:
Pea and Rice
We put pea and rice protein together because it’s much better than eating them separately. Pea protein is high in lysine but low in cysteine and methionine, while rice protein is high in cysteine and methionine but low in lysine. Together, they make a complete protein source that is easy to digest and has a low potential of causing allergies.
Quinoa, pronounced KEEN-wah, is also a complete protein like Hemp. While it may look and taste like a grain, it’s actually a seed. It is very high in fiber: there’s between 10 to 16 grams of fiber in every 100 gram of Quinoa - more than twice as high as most grains. It is also naturally gluten-free and perfect for people with gluten intolerance.
Buckwheat is a pseudocereal, much like Quinoa. So despite its name, it’s not related to wheat at all and is therefore gluten-free. It has less protein than other plant-based food sources, but it’s rich in minerals such as manganese, copper, magnesium, iron, and phosphorus.
Spirulina isn’t really a complete protein because it lacks methionine and cysteine. All you have to do though is to add grains, nuts, seeds, or oats and you’re set. 7 grams of Spirulina contains 4 grams of protein, vitamin B1, B2, B3, Copper, and Iron, making it one of the most nutrient-dense food sources on the planet.
While these food sources are nice to have, sometimes we can’t have them if we really want to. That’s why we created LYFE FUEL, as a plant-based protein meal replacement for those who want to eat clean but are always on the go.
Plant-based diets are expensive.
There are a lot of ways to save money even when you’re on a plant-based diet, but the key is planning. Meal plans not only allow you to plan your cooking but your shopping as well. If you have a meal plan in place, shopping becomes infinitely easier. This also allows you to buy only the food that you need, reducing food waste and saving you more money in the long run.
If you’re looking for a simple and easy way start with a plant based diet, you can check our 21-Day program here .
Plant based protein tastes like dirt!
We hear you. When it comes to vegetable protein powders, one of the most common misconceptions is that they taste bad. But this is just plain wrong. Almost every powder protein supplement comes in many delicious flavors that there is definitely something available for your taste.
LYFE FUEL itself comes in Vanilla Chai and Chocolate flavors that you can use to prepare your meals or drinks. We meticulously worked for 2 years to perfect the taste and texture of our shakes, and we continue to refine our products to create the best tasting plant-based products you can enjoy.
In the end, what’s important is that you get all the essential amino acids your body needs, whether it’s from animal or plant sources. However, we’ve found that adding more plant based sources to your diet leads to a cleaner and more sustainable body. And we’d take that any day.