ever wondered if you are protein deficient? Well, I certainly did at times. When just recently a friend of mine approached me with her fear of not getting enough protein after changing to a mostly plant-based diet, I thought it was time to write this post. Surely, I want to let you know up front that I am by no means an expert. I have no educational background in medicine nor nutrition. What I do, might not work for you. However, I have read up on a lot of nutritional research. Primarily, to be informed about what I put into my body. Furthermore, I couldn’t trust the common understanding around nutrition any longer. It simply didn’t feel right. It didn’t feel good to put these standard diet foods into my body. Lastly, no one was able to explain why they eat what they eat. So, I was curious where their information came from. The people surrounding me were obviously falling prey to the food industry. Hence, I needed to educate myself.
But back to the protein question. I will link some sources below. However, to make it short and sweet. There is no such a thing like protein deficiency. At least not for those of us who in general get enough food into their bodies. Clinically people are only found protein deficient in the case of being malnourished. The whole quest for more protein is simply a market stunt to make people buy protein powders, bars and shakes. Mind me, I use a protein powder occasionally. However, I use it because it tastes good and because it creates textures that otherwise wouldn’t be possible to create. Surely, I only buy all natural protein powders with no artificial sugars added.
For those of us who are working out a lot, added protein might lead to faster muscle growth. However, you won’t get protein deficient, if you don’t add additional protein to your diet. Therefore, it is totally fine, if you add natural protein powders to your diet but there is no requirement for it. Lastly, beware of all those powders with added artificial sugars. Those bad boys will rather make you grow in other ways and will not aid muscle gain.
Another area to dive into would be the question around plant protein and animal protein. From what I know, plant protein is all our body needs to keep going. As animal protein comes with more side effects than benefits, it is highly recommended to rather focus on consuming the plant kingdom which is rich in almost all vital nutrients one will ever need. By the way, did you know that meat eaters, most of the time, consume more protein than is recommended for their body size and activity level? You wouldn’t have guessed that, would you?
*Pictures taken at my favourite The Cold Pressed Juicery in Amsterdam