Do you get your protein from red or lean meat? Or do you prefer beans, nuts, and seeds? If you want to increase your protein intake without eating meat for health or personal reasons, there are many alternative sources of protein to choose from, most of which are plant-based.
What is protein?
You consume foods that contain protein almost every day. However, unlike other main macronutrients like carbs and fat, your body is unable to store protein.
You need protein to build, maintain, and repair almost all the tissues in your body. This includes your hair, nails, bones, muscles, blood, and organs. Aside from giving the body energy, protein also keeps the immune system strong.
Protein is made up of 21 amino acids. The human body can make 12 of them, but there are nine essential amino acids that come directly from food.
Take note that the daily recommended dietary allowance (RDA) is 0.8 g of protein per kg of body weight. For the average male or female adult, this is equivalent to about 46-56 g of protein per day. For reference, a three-ounce, fist-sized hamburger patty has 24 g of protein.
If you want to build more muscle, this doesn't mean you need to eat more red meat. In fact, you can get enough protein from these alternative sources.