What is a complete protein?
Amino acids are the building blocks for protein and there are 20 different kinds of these amino acids. Our body can produce most of these on its own however we need to obtain the 9 essential amino acids from our diets.
In order for a food to be classed as a “complete” protein it simply means it needs to contain all of these 9 essential amino acids.
Whilst it is absolutely achievable to eat enough protein on a plant based diet, it is somewhat harder to make sure we are eating “complete” proteins. In order to do this we need to combine some of our food choices to make them complete. This does not need to be considered at every meal with the food you choose to eat, however ensuring you eat a complete protein throughout the day will keep you reaching your health and fitness goals.
5 Complete Vegan Protein Sources to Try!
PLANTA FORCE Complete Vegan Protein Shake
Luckily for plant based athletes, Planta Force have carefully selected their ingredients to ensure their protein shake contains all 9 essential amino acids. Why not mix your favourite flavour with half a frozen banana, a cup of almond milk and a tablespoon of cacao powder to create a yummy ice cold protein smoothie
Quinoa is great to include into your diet if you are plant based, not only is it a complete protein it is high in fibre and gluten free. It is versatile and can be used in sweet or savoury dishes. Stay tuned for recipes such as quinoa muffins and quinoa bean stew!
Tofu is a great source of protein for people following a plant based diet and again it is versatile enough to use in sweet and savoury dishes. It can take some time to get used to if you are new to it however it is full of nutritional benefits, it is high in calcium and zinc and can help with osteoporosis and the menopause. Stay tuned for recipes such as tofu pad thai and chocolate tofu mousse!
Buckwheat is great for adding variety to your diet; despite its name it is gluten free and great for controlling your blood sugar levels helping you to feel full. It protects against cancer and helps to improve your heart health! One of the most popular ways to use buckwheat is to create tasty buckwheat pancakes.
Similar to tofu, tempeh is made from soya beans and contains all 9 essential amino acids making it a complete protein. The process of making tempeh is different to tofu therefore it has a slightly meatier texture and makes it great for things such as stir fry!