Fit Talk: Veganism and proteins, what you need to know


This month is Fit month at Blogzine and for the occasion we are bringing you articles on health, nutrition and sports every week. In this month’s first column, fit coach Julie Schoofs sheds light on one of the biggest misconceptions about vegan eating: proteins or lack thereof.

Another day of being a vegan and I still haven’t died from protein deficiency

“So you’re vegan, where do you get your protein from?” This is both the most frustrating question and the most frequently asked to people who eat vegan. I myself have been vegan for 4 years now and am as healthy as a horse. Since so many people are interested in the “vegan way of life and proteins” – I am taking the opportunity in this column to answer it.

The basics of a healthy life are the same for every person, drink enough water, eat enough fruits and vegetables, avoid stress, get enough hours of sleep etc. Ok, so much for that and we all agree. There are now very many different ways of eating, I am thinking of KETO, vegetarian, vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, raw-foodism, etc. Today I’m talking specifically about veganism and protein, also because this is and will continue to be a very important topic with healthy lifestyles and athletes.

The interest in protein

Now why are these proteins so important and so much in demand? Well, they are the building blocks of every cell in our body, they build muscle tissue and protect every type of tissue. It goes without saying that athletes often consume extra protein- rich food after physical exertion. Muscles use proteins to recover and enlarge, and they also provide more saturation than carbohydrates and fats. It is also an important source of energy! 

Amino acids

It is an eternal debate among athletes, can vegans get enough protein by eating only plant- based foods? Because animal products and byproducts such as eggs, meat and dairy contain almost all essential amino acids, the building blocks of protein. For vegans it is important to vary a lot in protein-rich vegetables, seeds, legumes and nuts.

The sources

These days it’s really not hard to find lesser known items like edamame, spelt or hemp seeds in the main grocery stores. There are also more and more meat substitutes that contain a high protein content, but be careful with the ratio of fats per product.

Below I list some high-protein food sources for you:
– Soybeans
– Lentils
– Protein powders
– Spirulina (blue-green algae)
– Nuts
– Hempseed
– Chickpeas
– Pumpkin seeds
– Beans
– Peas
– Oatmeal
– Couscous
– Whole grain (quinoa, bulgur, freekeh)
– Leafy vegetables (e.g. broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts, spinach,…)

Where to start?

Do you want to change your eating habits but don’t quite know how? Through Time For You Consulting I offer a Fit Coaching that may come in handy. This is a 4-week coaching program with predetermined weekly menus. There is no lack of vegetable proteins! The goal can be to lose some weight in a healthy way, to get acquainted with less known products and recipes, to save time in the kitchen and to learn a healthy lifestyle. I also follow up on your mental well-being and there are exercise schedules included! 

Curious about more healthy tips and insider facts? Then be sure to come back next week for more Fit Talk with Julie. If you need answers to specific questions related to veganism and proteins, list them in the comments below. We will be happy to answer them for you.

This article has been written by Julie Schoofs from Time For You Consulting

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