The two questions all people on a plant-based diet hear over and over again are “how do you get your protein?” and “how do you get your calcium?” These questions show just how powerful the meat and dairy industry have been in misleading us about where we get complete protein and digestible calcium from. I found this list of the best plant-based proteins from Get Fresh! magazine in an article I was reading about vegan triathlete Brendan Brazier (he invented the Vega line of fitness nutrition supplements). Here is their list of the best proteins:
All raw foods contain protein in a form that’s very easy for the body to use, but some foods are an especially rich source. Unlike protein derived from animals, these foods are also loaded with essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.
1 Leafy greens
The modern diet is too high in sugar and chronically low in magnesium. Enter leafy greens to restore balance with their low sugar content and high magnesium levels. They are also loaded with calcium, iron and free-radical- busting antioxidants. Enjoy them in salads, juices and smoothies.
2 Liquid blue-green algae
This complete protein source is best known as a powerful energy enhancer and brain booster. Many who’ve tried it report increased concentration and mental clarity, as well as enhanced mood. Find a high-quality source of this wild-growing wonder-food and take a tablespoon a day.
3 Nuts and seeds
The best protein source of all in this category is hemp. It is also a very sustainable choice since it requires no pesticides, suppresses weeds, improves soil structure and grows to maturity in just 100 days. Sprouting your nuts and seeds makes the protein extra-easy for your body to absorb and also greatly boosts the nutrient content.
4 Sea vegetables
Ounce for ounce, sea vegetables contain more protein than meat, more calcium than milk, and they’re higher in vitamins and minerals than any other food group. They’re also a treat to eat, whether you make your own nori rolls or just tear dulse over your salads.
5 Sprouted foods
The ultimate protein, vitamin, mineral, phytonutrient and enzyme supplement. Sprinkle sprouted legumes, grains and seeds on your salads. Juice wheatgrass, or for a potent living elixir that is easier on the palate try sunflower greens with cucumber.