I have done many alterations to my diet to ensure the right balance of intake of nutrients – especially protein. Being a vegetarian, this has always been a concern as to how am I to manage getting enough protein as part of my diet intake. There are several options and ways of getting protein which are well known and included in most diets, however, with this blog post I will be highlighting on the importance of including plant-based proteins – Soy, in your diets.A primary concern that most individuals have is if including plant-based proteins can give them adequate amounts of protein. Plant based protein or Soy protein delivers the important amino acids in the required amount into your blood stream which helps in fuelled growth and development making it a high-quality protein. It is also comparable to the protein amount that milk, meat and eggs provide during intake as it is low in fat, saturated fat, cholesterol and lactose free.
Why is Protein the dietary Hero and why it should be included in your diet?
- Protein is the most abundant substance in the body – present in every cell and tissue including muscle
- The body continually breaks down protein, so getting an adequate amount of protein in your diet is essential
- Protein helps maintain muscle mass on a calorie restricted diet
- Protein found in high quality protein sources, are key nutritional components needed to promote muscle growth
Talking about Soy Protein – what are the benefits of including this plant-based protein in your diet?
- Weight Management and Satiety: It helps in maintaining weight and increasing satiety, as it makes you feel full which reduces your intake of food resulting in maintenance of weight
- Heart Health: including as little as 25 grams of soy protein a day in your dietary intake in a low saturated fat and cholesterol, this reduces the risk of heart diseases.
- Muscle Health: Soy protein enhances muscle synthesis and promotes muscle growth, especially with resistance training
- Healthy Living: as we age more high-quality proteins are required to maintain or increase the muscle mass and function. Including soy protein in your diet from a young age helps with the muscles ability to respond to exercise as its reduced in the elderly. Soy protein is a lean source of protein that supports muscle maintenance and supporting heart health.
Depending on the stage of your life cycle, the protein intake and required amount differs, however, if you include soy protein in diets from a younger age – this has several benefits. A few ways of how soy protein can be used in foods for children are:
- Boosts protein content in foods for growing, active children – snacks, cereals and beverages
- Enables healthier alternatives to high sugar, empty calorie snacks
- An effective tool in managing hunger and improving diet quality
- Enables nutritious, lactose-free, dairy free alternatives for children with lactose intolerance of dairy protein allergy
So, go on try out to include some soy protein in your diet in the various forms its available in – milk, cereal bars, soy, protein powder, cookies, supplements among others.
Did you know: The English word Protein originated from the Greek “proteios” meaning prime or primary!