The world’s protein obsession
The world is obsessed with protein. We are sick of hearing it all the time. “I must eat a lot of meat and eggs to put on more muscle,” he says. “I need to lose weight so I’m on a low carb and high protein diet,” she says. “I’m being great with my food – Every day I have a whey protein shake,’ she says. ‘I’m eating healthy now, eggs everyday and also chicken and salmon,” he says. It’s so frustrating and sad to see how many people are so misinformed. But it isn’t a coincidence that this protein obsession is happening.
So why are people obsessed with protein?
Two main elements:
- The obscenely wealthy multibillion dollar meat, egg and dairy industry (which happens to be subsidized by the government) that constantly tell you to eat the stuff and, by doing so, happens to make plenty of $$$££$$$$$$$££££$$$$$…
- A superbly effectively implemented brainwashing action on the mass public. Yes, on you too.
This is why people desperately consume animal products non-stop, thus contributing to the most profitable business in the human history = meat, egg and dairy. Not only the most profitable, but also the most pointless and the most destructive.
Ok, let’s go step by step. Let’s do this!
What is protein?
Protein is a compound made up of amino acids, which are the “building blocks” of major parts of the human body. There are 20 amino acids, 8 or 9 which are called essential amino acids, and which you need to get from food.
Protein is in almost all food
There is this crazy mass misconception that protein = meat and animal derivatives, and the rest are carbohydrates. This is so ridiculously sad and false, as almost every single whole plant food contains at least more than 2.5% protein. It is, however, a very convenient misconception, as this is the reason why most people think that we need to eat meat and animal products as, otherwise, we wouldn’t get enough protein, get sick and die in horrible unexpected circumstances. What a melodrama. Protein is one of the easiest nutrients to get. If you are eating enough food, you are certainly eating more than enough protein. Contrary to popular belief (making reference again to that crazy mass misconception mentioned above) the best recommended sources of proteins are those of non-animal origin, as these are high in saturated fats, cholesterol, have very little to offer nutritionally, are devoid of any fibre and are very poor in essential vitamins and minerals.
So where do we get our protein?
Protein is not just about quantity. It’s also about quality.
There is more than plenty of scientific literature and evidence which clearly states that the more animal protein you eat, the more likely you are to get sick and die from a myriad of all the current top killers in the Western world. As documented on of the biggest epidemiological and nutritional study in the history of man, The China Study, a plant-based nutrition prevents, treats or cures heart diseases, prostate, colon, breast, ovarian and pancreatic cancers, kidney disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, obesity, asthma and impotence, just to name a few.
Animal protein is one of the most metabolically acidic foods humans eat. It creates conditions of acidity within our alkaline bodies after ingestion, forcing the body to seek to return to an alkaline state through demineralization of the bones and the cells, which leads to weakened bones and ultimately osteoporosis. If the protein content of your diet exceeds the amount you need, not only will your liver and kidneys become overburdened, but you will start leaching calcium from your bones to neutralize the excess animal protein that becomes acidic in the human body.
At Detox-Fit, we recommend plant-based protein sources which are packed with nutrients, vitamins, phytonutrients, antioxidants and goodness.
According to a plethora of scientific articles, most meat, dairy and egg-eaters will get cancer, osteoporosis or diabetes, while more than 50 percent will have a non-genetically-induced heart attack or stroke.
Concerning cancer, there’s no doubt that sugar, the oil and fat in fried foods, artificial additives, human-made trans fatty acids found in junk food, and the excessive amount of refined carbohydrates found in white rice, white bread, and pasta cause health problems, while non-dietary factors harm us, too. Stress, a lack of sleep, smoking tobacco, chemical pollution, and a lack of exercise can wreak havoc on the body. However, since animal flesh and the things that come out of animals are always toxic, the main cause of cancer will always be animal protein, casein, the excessive amount of fat found in all animal products, and the 2-9 percent of naturally-occurring trans-fatty acids found in meat and dairy. Since cancer thrives in the acidic environment that animal protein creates, it is essential to eat plant-based foods exclusively, and control the non-dietary factors to the best of your ability. Check out this 2014 University of Southern California study which clearly indicts animal protein as a deadly toxin.
As for osteoporosis, animal protein contributes to this problem because keeping blood and tissues at a neutral Ph balance always takes priority over keeping calcium phosphate in the bones. Bones can hold out for years with insufficient calcium, but blood and tissue cannot because they need phosphate to offset the acidity. When the body becomes acidic with animal protein, it withdraws calcium phosphate from the bones and uses the alkaline mineral phosphate to keep the Ph levels of blood and tissues balanced. The calcium is then excreted through our urine. Epidemiological evidence proves that people who consume the least amount of animal protein always have the lowest rates of osteoporosis and bone fractures.
We are still looking for the first medical report in history that can indict broccoli, bananas or asparagus as a cause of illness.
As for diabetes, most people are unaware that animal protein and fat raise blood sugar as much as stress, and refined carbohydrates like white rice and sugar. Therefore, diabetes can be treated, controlled or cured with a low-protein, low-fat, low-sugar, low-refined-carbohydrate vegan diet, along with cardio exercise and a minimum amount of stress.
A 2013 study also showed that marijuana is of great benefit to diabetics. As you regain control of your blood sugar, you will probably have to continue taking insulin shots for a time. However, within one year, you should be able to do away with insulin completely! (Pig serum used to be the key ingredient in insulin until doctors discovered it exacerbated foot neuropathy and ocular issues. All insulin is now made synthetically from human insulin.)
But it isn’t a problem if you get sick. Actually, that’s good for business too, as the guys at the Big Pharma will always be happy to take over and “help you”, basically selling you various pills and drugs – medications, they call it. What a nice vicious circle, huh?
Lentils, beans, leafy greens, whole grains, green peas, quinoa (which also contains all 9 essential amino acids), chickpeas, oatmeal, all kinds of sprouts, barley, buckwheat, any other meat natural plant-based replacements such as tofu, seitan or tempeh, hemp seeds (very high in protein), almonds, cashews, walnuts, peanut butter, blue-green algae such as spirulina (highest source of protein at 68%), broccoli (also comes packed with a bevy of vitamins, calcium, and cancer-preventing fiber), spinach, wheat flour, nuts, seeds such as sesame (tahini), sunflower, poppy, pumpkin and chia seeds, edamane beans, mushrooms, asparagus, almond butter… There are ample amounts of protein in whole, natural plant-based foods.
A plant-based diet is void of cholesterol, lower in fat, saturated fat, and rich in fiber and nutrients, including phytochemicals, and has been proven to prevent and even reverse diseases, even in those seriously and terminally ill.
It was once wrongly believed that different plant proteins needed to be combined in specific ways at the same meal, like rice and beans, but that theory has been disregarded. Don’t worry about this. Your body is clever and, as long as it gets a wide variety of plant proteins, it naturally knows how to use them efficiently. You don’t have to worry about how to mix specific foods and times. Just eat right and in a balanced manner, and don’t forget to enjoy it.
So if you are looking for a high natural source of untouched protein which provides you with plenty of nutrients, vitamins and protective antioxidants and free of cholesterol and saturated fats, then plant-based protein is your best choice. Remember: your body doesn’t need any animal protein and is certainly doing more harm than good. But your body does need and thrives when you feed it with powerful plant nutrients. .
How much protein do we need?
According to WHO (World Health Organisation) we need just 5% of our daily calorie intake from protein. We recommend a maximum of about 10%. Most people eat too much protein, when our bodies need far less protein that you may think. The average meat eater consumes more protein than their body’s need, which is hazardous for the health, as the body cannot handle it effectively.
You will find countless of misleading articles online telling you that protein is incredibly important and that you must, literally, stuff your face with meat, dairy and eggs non-stop to be strong and healthy, look fantastic, achieve your perfect weight loss goal and even find your perfect soul mate. And probably win the lottery too. Basically they will tell you that meat and animal products are the Holy Grail and that you must consume this desperately and on a daily basis. And most people will effectively follow. And mix it with some liver too, they say. And don’t forget to add some double extra cheese on it. These articles will usually be accompanied by several pictures of bloody pieces of meat and other corpses which are meant to make you drool and bring your zombie instinct (if you have one) out. Anyway, these articles are totally wrong and misinformed. A pack of convenient lies. Furthermore, they are dangerous.
We need as little as 2.5% and a maximum of 15% of protein from our daily calorie intake.The current recommended daily allowance for protein for the average adult is 0.8 – 1.0 mg/ per kg body weight. This also includes a safe margin of error. A sufficient protein intake will be 10-15% max of daily calories. The obscenely wealthy meat, dairy and egg industries have done an excellent job of making everyone believe that you need EXCESSIVE AMOUNTS (25, 35, 50, even 60 or more percent) of protein in your diets.
However, healthy protein intake—plant-based—should not be over 15 percent of your diet. Anyone who recommends more than that is misinformed, uninformed, fatuous or lying. The amount of protein in mother’s breast milk is only 5 percent, measured in terms of caloric expenditure, yet breast milk spurs rapid growth in the infant through the first months and years of her life.
There isn’t even a medical term for “protein deficiency.”
When was the last time that you saw someone being hospitalized from a protein deficiency? Never, because it doesn’t happen, as there is virtually no such thing as a protein deficiency in the developed world, except perhaps in people who are severely restricting their overall total calories (perhaps because of fasting, eating disorders or illness).
It’s impossible to design a protein deficient diet based on sufficient calories.
Too much protein however, is quite common, especially among low carb dieters. The symptoms of too much protein may include: low energy, low inmune system, constipation, tiredness, dehydration, lethargy, heavy feeling, weight gain, sweet cravings, feeling “tight” or stiff in the joints, stubborn body fat that won’t go away in some areas, body becomes overly acidic, kidney function issues and declines (due to the stress required to process excess proteins — the kidney faces increased pressure to filter toxins and waste), foul body odour, halitosis, and calcium loss to compensate for acidic status in body.
One of the funny things with the protein myth is that no one really cares about your protein intake… until they hear you are vegan. Oh yes. Then, automatically, everybody becomes an expert in nutrition, health and fitness, and seemingly seriously concerned about your bloody protein intake. Well, we actually happen to be specialists on this subject, as this is what we professionally do and, having been on both sides of the story we also have the full scope of things from first hand experience.
If you are vegan or follow a plant-based nutrition you surely must have heard The Question. Yes, you know which question. “Where do you get your protein?” That question that may make you want to scream in frustration. It certainly makes me want to scream in frustration, I admit it. If we had a pound for each time we’ve been asked this question we’d filthy rich by now. Maybe we should start asking…
However, it is important to remember that this question is merely fuelled by ignorance and misinformation, and so every time it’s asked there is a shining and beautiful opportunity to educate others who, in return, will then be able to educate others. At the end of the day, there was a time when I asked this question myself. That’s the power of the brainwashing action for you. The good news is that, as long as you have an open mind and are welcoming to gain more knowledge, it’s possible to wake up from the soporific state.
Protein versus Carbohydrates: The Perfect Balance
Many people thing that the main thing they need to eat is protein and that carbohydrates are evil. No, no, no.
So what should be the perfect balance between protein and carbohydrate?
Food is (or should be) your body’s fuel. So Food = Fuel = Energy.
Your body needs energy constantly. Your body’s primary source of energy is Carbohydrates, secondly Fat. As a last resource, if there aren’t any carbohydrates or fat resources it’ll get energy from Protein. Which isn’t good, as protein isn’t (and shouldn’t be) an energy source.
So carbohydrates are the most important and should be consumed in higher excess than protein. Whatever your health and fitness goals. Weight loss, muscle building, endurance, anything. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Be better than that.
Unlike many people think carbohydrates aren’t just the starchy ones such as potatoes, bread and pasta. No, no, no. Foods such as peppers, aubergines, courgettes, lentils, broccoli… are also carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates are the body’s preferred and number one source of energy. Our brain need carbs just to think, to maintain alertness and concentration. Our bodies need carbs to move, to do things. You need carbs to think, to move, to become stronger, to become faster, to have more energy in order to be stronger, and to be able to build more muscle, if that’s what you want.
Yes. If you want to develop more muscle mass, you need plenty of carbohydrates, to be stronger and be able to lift heavier weights and have more energy. The stronger you are, the heavier you will lift and the bigger the muscle gain you will see. Simple. You don’t get muscles for eating chickens, pigs, livers and eggs, but for putting in the hard work, training hard and lifting heavy weights. Otherwise the whole world would be filled with Arnold Schwarzenegger lookalikes walking around. And, last time I checked, that wasn’t the case.
If you don’t consume enough carbohydrates you have a problem. And this, currently, is a common problem which we see all the time, and a burden when it comes to weight loss, fitness, energy and general health.
Many top athletes, bodybuilders and sportsmen and women follow the 80/10/10 plant-based ratio to support and promote health and fitness.
80% of the calories come carbohydrates (veggies, fruits, grains, legumes…), 10% come from plant-based protein, and the rest 10% come from healthy plant fats.
For all you muscleheads who think vegans can’t be athletic or big, check out these guys below who follow the 80/10/10 plant-based balance.
Want to see more? Many more here: Vegan Bodybuilding, OrganicAthlete, Great Vegan Athletes, MeatFreeAthlete,VegRunChat.com and Vegan Fighter.
Getting enough protein on a plant-based nutrition
Getting enough protein on a plant-based nutrition isn’t an issue at all. It’s very simple and it shouldn’t be of concern for anyone.
Contrary to the misinformation spewed forth by uninformed people, there is no shortage of protein in a plant-based diet. Virtually all amino acids are found in the plant kingdom with almonds, bananas, bean sprouts, brazil nuts, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, coconuts, corn, dates, eggplant, filberts, goji berries, alfalfa sprouts, okra, pecans, soy, spirulina (seaweed), squash, sunflower seeds, sweet potatoes, tempeh (fermented soy), tomatoes, walnuts and wheatgrass being complete proteins. However, as advised, consuming all amino acids at one meal is unnecessary. Meat, dairy and egg-eaters receive NO benefit from eating complete animal-based proteins except having a complete chance at cancer, osteoporosis and a host of other ailments. Beans, brown rice, cacao/chocolate (genuine cacao/chocolate is a bean), grains (all), hemp (milk/oil/powder/seed), lentils, nuts (all), seeds (all), vegetables (all), and all plant-based meats/dairy are great sources of protein, too. Even fruit has around 5 percent protein, which is the same amount of protein human babies receive from mother’s breast milk.
There is NO need for most people to actually track their protein intake. If you’re just a healthy person trying to stay healthy, then simply eating quality protein with most of your meals (along with nutritious plant foods) should bring your intake into an optimal range.
For a detailed list of protein-rich foods, check out this chart.
For an explanatory video about protein, check out Freelee, an Australian native and raw food guru.
Just to show you how simple it is to reach your body’s protein needs, let’s take an example of a 75kg person. It is recommended that this person eat 60-75 grams of protein per day.
Here are some common plant foods with their protein amounts:
- 1 burrito with rice, beans and vegetables = 40 grams protein
- 1 cup tempeh = 30 grams protein
- 1 peanut butter and jelly sandwich = 20 grams protein
- 1 bowl of cereal with soy milk = 20 grams protein (depending on brands)
- 1 large salad with vegetables, sunflower seeds and raisins = 20 grams protein
- 1 cup tofu = 18 grams protein
- 1 falafel sandwich with 3 balls, hummus & tahini = 18 grams protein
- 1 cup cooked lentils = 16 grams protein
- ½ cup quinoa = 13 grams protein
- ½ cup cooked split peas = 11 grams protein
- ½ cup hummus = 10 grams protein
- 1 bagel = 10 grams protein
- ½ cup black beans = 9 grams protein
- 1 cup soymilk = 8 grams protein (depending on brand of soymilk)
- 1 cup cooked oatmeal = 7 grams protein
- 1 oz soy cheese = 7 grams protein (depending on type of cheese)
- 2 Tbsp peanut butter = 7 grams protein
- 1 cup cooked pasta = 7 grams protein
- 1 cup cooked brown rice = 5 grams protein
- 1 oz cashews or almonds = 5 grams protein
- 1 cup cooked broccoli = 5 grams protein
- 1 cup cooked spinach = 5 grams protein
- 1 whole avocado = 4 grams protein
- 1 slice whole wheat bread = 3 grams protein
- 1 Tbsp tahini = 2.6 grams protein
- 1 falafel ball = 2.5 grams protein
So if our person has 1 cup oatmeal, 1 cup soymilk and 1 oz of almonds for breakfast (20 grams protein); a falafel sandwich and a green salad with sunflower seeds for lunch (38 grams protein); an apple and a spoonful of peanut butter for a snack (4 grams protein); and a tofu-vegetable stir-fry over brown rice for dinner (25 grams protein); he eats approximately 87 grams of protein and easily meets his recommended daily allowance. See how easy that was?
But, as mentioned above, there is NO need to go around counting your daily grams of protein intake. As long as you follow a balanced and calorie healthy plan you will be fine. Promise!
So it’s time to set the record straight. Enough of this protein myths, lies and obsession.
Feel free to send the following info to all your bewildered friends and family who just can’t seem to understand how those who follow a plant-based diet are not only alive, but actually thriving on good health.
For those of you who follow a plant-based vegan diet, the next time someone asks you where you get your protein, suppress the urge to scream in frustration, you know what to say. And always remember, that there was probably a time when you asked the same.
For those who would like to learn more about how to easily and effectively follow a delicious and super-healthy plant-based nutrition plan, just get in touch with us and we will be very happy to help.
By Evany Ibáñez -Banczer
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