How to Meet Your Protein Needs Without Meat
Not everyone likes to eat meat, and that’s fine. Quality protein is still available in many other food sources. I’ll share some of my favorite non-meat protein sources with you.
Although classified as a fat, nuts and seeds have quality protein in them as well. Here is just a sample of some of my favorites:
- Brazil Nuts
- Sunflower seeds
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Flax Seeds
Legumes are one of the healthiest types of food in the world! Full of fiber, complex carbs and of course protein.
- Soy beans
- Pinto beans
- Kidney beans
- Split peas
- Black Beans
You may not notice it, but whole grains have some protein in them too. It has to be whole grains though. Nothing made with enriched flour.
- Oatmeal (Regular or Steel Cut)
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Brown Rice
- Whole Wheat Bread
Now obviously if you are lactose-intolerant then don’t consume dairy. Some might argue that dairy contributes to many of the food allergies that have developed over the last few decades or so.
There may be some correlation to that, but no solid evidence of that so far. My opinion is that as long as you like the taste, and you’re not allergic, dairy is fine. It’s a huge part of my diet, both now and when I was losing all of that weight.
- Milk (1% or Skim preferably)
- Cottage cheese (reduced fat or fat free)
- Greek Yogurt
- Low-fat or fat-free cheese
- Eggs or egg whites (not technically dairy, but it’s always in the dairy section at the store)
- Soy Beans
- Soy Nuts
- Soy Milk
Word of caution for males: Studies have shown that large amounts of soy in your diet can elevate estrogen levels chronically.
Elevated estrogen levels in males can lead to early Gynecomastia (man boobs). But just use your common sense, too much of anything is bad!