Protein is considered the building block of the human body. The body needs protein-rich foods to account for daily wear and tear on muscles, speed up recovery and gain strength.
Ideally, pre- and post-workout meals should be nutrient dense due to their role in the body’s rapid recovery.
Did you know that one cup of chickpeas provides up to 40% of the daily amount of fiber you need, 70% folate and 22% iron? In addition, they have a low glycemic index. This means your body slowly digests this legume, which helps you feel full longer and prevents blood sugar spikes.
Besides being delicious, it is a healthy meal, which can be enjoyed as a curry, as a garnish in salads, in enchiladas or as a spicy chili.
Reason enough to have more? Add it to vegetable preparation, stir it into sautéed vegetables, or eat it as is and enjoy the protein goodness in the paneer.
Protein in lentils – 9g per 1/2 cup serving
5. Peas (Matar)
Few vegetables are as high in protein as this winter staple. You also get the protein and fiber from frozen green peas, so go ahead and store a bag in your freezer.
Be sure to pick up the bag and check how the peas were frozen – if you can smell them, they’re good to go; if not, they were thawed and refrozen in one big chunk. Try Matar Paneer to increase your protein intake.
Protein in Matar – 7g per 1 cup serving
6. Mixed seeds
The seeds add crunch and a lot of protein to your meals. Choose from sesame, sunflower, pumpkin or poppy seeds as they are all high in protein and healthy fats.
Besides salads, you can also add them to raita, cereal or homemade granola.
Protein in seeds – 5-7.3g per quarter cup serving
10 DIETARY TIPS TO INCREASE PROTEIN INTAKE FOR VEGETARIANS
10 Benefits of High Protein Foods
Due to its ability to help the human body recover faster, protein is considered an extremely important nutrient. Here are some more reasons why you need to improve your nutrient intake.
1. Protein Reduces Appetite and Hunger
Of all the macronutrients, protein is known to be the most satiating, even if you eat less food. The macronutrient tends to reduce the levels of ghrelin (hunger hormone) in the body while increasing the levels of the YY peptide, which further helps an individual feel full.
If you’re looking to lose weight, try replacing some of the carbohydrates and fats in your diet with protein. You can just add a few extra bites of meat while reducing your portion of rice.
2. Protein improves heart health
A high protein intake has been shown to lower blood pressure levels. This reduces the risk of strokes and heart attacks.
In a review of 40 controlled trials, higher nutrient intake was found to lower systolic blood pressure by a reading of 1.76 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure by a reading of 1.15 mm Hg .
In addition to lowering blood pressure, it has been found that a high protein diet can also lower levels of LDL (or bad cholesterol) in the body.
3. Protein strengthens the immune system
The body protects itself from various diseases with the help of antibodies.
These antibodies are specific types of proteins capable of detecting foreign elements or antigens. The body produces antibodies in order to deactivate antigens.
4. Protein Boosts Metabolism
Eating food can temporarily boost the body’s metabolism because the body uses calories to digest and use the nutrients in food. This is called the thermic effect of food.
Since it has a much higher thermic effect than fats or carbohydrates (20-35% versus 5-15%), protein intake will boost the body’s metabolism significantly. Some studies show that increased consumption of this nutrient can lead to the burning of 80 to 100 extra calories each day.
One study then suggested that a high-protein group burned 260 more calories per day than a low-protein group.
5. Protein improves bone strength
Contrary to popular belief, most long-term studies suggest that protein may have major benefits for bone health. Consuming larger amounts may help maintain bone mass better, while helping to reduce the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
This is especially true for women, who are at higher risk for osteoporosis after menopause. Eating plenty of protein-rich foods and staying active is the best way to prevent this from happening.
6. Protein increases muscle mass and strength
Protein is considered the building block of muscles. Consuming adequate amounts helps maintain muscle mass and promotes muscle growth while doing strength training.
If you’re physically active or trying to gain muscle, make sure you’re getting enough protein. A high intake may also help prevent muscle loss during weight loss.
7. Maintenance of weight loss
While a high protein diet can help an individual lose weight, the problem lies in maintaining the weight.
Studies have shown that a slight increase in protein intake can help with weight maintenance. According to one such study, increasing nutrient intake from 15% to 18% of your calories reduced weight regain by 50%.
A permanent increase in your protein intake can go a long way in avoiding excess weight.
8. Protein Increases Energy Levels
Protein also serves as a natural source of energy. Failure to consume a diet that would provide sufficient energy to the body, such as during fasting or weight loss programs, would force the body to use its own functional protein to compensate.
Since there is no extra protein in the body, enzymes and muscles break down protein to produce amino acids for energy or to synthesize glucose. This would ensure a continuous supply of glucose to the cells.
9. Protein Improves Skin Health
Protein strengthens tissues that suffer from constant wear and tear, such as the skin. Collagen is a fibrous protein that is found in abundance, which provides the necessary strength to these skin cells.
The healthy, youthful appearance of the skin and the absence of wrinkles are largely dependent on the levels of collagen present in the body.
10. Cell and Tissue Recovery
Cells and tissues must undergo continual renewal and recovery in order to maintain a perfectly healthy body. A constant supply of amino acids is essential for the formation of proteins. This protein makes new cells and tissues, such as hair, skin and nails.
Cells in the skin, blood and digestive system begin to die after a few weeks. After that, the protein begins to create and replenish new healthy cells to replace the dead cells.
High Protein Vegetarian Food – Indian Recipes
In order to help you increase your protein intake, we have concocted some recipes for you. Try these delicious dishes and include them in your diet to increase your daily nutrient intake.
1. Soya Matar ki Sabzi – High Protein Food Recipes
- Cooking oil – 1 tsp
- cloves – 2-3
- Cinnamon – 1 inch
- Cumin seeds – ¼ tsp
- Chopped onion – 2 tbsp
- Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
- Water – 0.5 cups
- bay leaf – 1
- Salt – 1/2 teaspoon
- Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
- Ginger and garlic paste – 1 tsp
- Tomato – 1 (chopped)
- Green peas – 1/4 cup
- Green chilli – 1
- Coriander leaves – 1 sprig
- Nutrela nuggets – 2 tbsp
- Garam masala – ¼ teaspoon
- Make a paste of tomatoes and green chilli.
- Boil the pieces of soy, squeeze out the water completely and set aside.
- Boil the green peas and keep them aside.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf and cumin seeds. Add the onions and sauté for a minute.
- Add ginger and garlic paste and sauté well.
- Then add the tomato, green chili paste, salt, turmeric, chili powder and cook the mixture until the oil separates from it.
- Add the peas and the soya pieces with the water. Cover and cook this mixture for about 6-8 minutes. Serve sprinkled with garam masala.
Nutritional Breakdown (100g):
- Calories- 79.3
- Protein – 6.6g
- Fat – 1.8g
- Carbohydrates – 9.4g
- Fiber – 4.1g
2. Paneer Tikka – High Protein Food Recipes
- Lemon juice – 1 tsp
- Chilli powder – 0.5 tsp
- Cumin powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Curd (cow’s milk) – 3/4 cup
- Ginger and garlic paste – 2 teaspoons
- Green chilli – 1 (chopped)
- Pepper powder – 1 tsp
- Fennel seed powder – 1 tsp
- Turmeric – 1 tsp
- Chickpea flour (besan) – 1/3 cup
- Oil – 4 tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Paneer (cow) – 200 grams (diced)
- Garam masala- 1 tsp
- Take the curd in a bowl and whisk it well.
- Add chili powder, cumin seed powder, ginger garlic paste, chilli, fennel seed powder, pepper powder, besan, 1 tsp oil, salt and mix well.
- Marinate the paneer pieces in the curd mixture for at least an hour.
- Brush a nonstick grill pan with oil and place the paneer in it. Cook on both sides and drizzle with oil if necessary, until it turns brown.
- Serve hot with sliced onions, lemon and green chutney.
Nutritional Breakdown (100g):
- Calories – 204.6
- Protein – 10.7g
- Fat – 15g
- Carbohydrates – 7g
- Fiber – 1.5g
3. Grilled Tofu – High Protein Food Recipes
- Firm tofu – 1 block (drained)
- Lemon juice – 1/4 cup
- Olive oil – 1 tbsp
- Coriander leaves – 2 sprigs (chopped)
- Chopped garlic – 2 cloves
- Cayenne pepper – 1/4 teaspoon
- Chilli powder – 2 teaspoons
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Pepper powder – 1 tsp
- Slice tofu lengthwise into 4 thick slices, or cut into cubes and thread onto skewers.
- Whisk together lime juice, olive oil, cilantro leaves, garlic, chili powder, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper in a bowl.
- Brush the tofu with the marinade.
- Now cover the tofu and refrigerate for about 15 minutes to an hour.
- Grill the tofu on a lightly oiled griddle until cooked through, brushing it occasionally with the marinade for about 10 to 15 minutes.
Nutritional Breakdown (100g):
- Calories- 94.7
- Protein – 6.8g
- Fat – 6.8g
- Carbohydrates – 3.6g
- Fiber – 0.9g
High protein diet
Although diets are meant to be balanced in nature, we can also design them to improve the intake of a particular nutrient. This high protein diet plan will help increase the protein content in the body.
|6:00 AM||Warm Amla water (1 glass)
Dipped Walnuts (4 pieces – half of one)
|6:30 AM||Banana (1 small – 6″ to 6-7/8″ long)|
|8:30 am||Unsweetened soy milk (200ml)|
|10:00 AM||Steamed sprouts and vegetables (1 bowl)
Apple almond chia seed smoothie with low fat milk (1 glass)
|12:00 p.m.||Coconut water (1 coconut yields)
Guava fruit (2 fruits, with waste)
|2:15 p.m.||Salad of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots and beets (1 bowl)|
|2:30 p.m.||Quinoa pulao with tofu and spinach (1 bowl)
Raita with mixed vegetables (1.5 katori)
|3:30 p.m.||Cinnamon green tea (1 cup)
Low fat paneer (0.5 cup, cubed)
|8:15 p.m.||Tomato, cucumber and carrot salad (1 katori)|
|8:30 p.m.||Oats Cheela without Oil (2 pieces)
Soya Matar ki Sabzi (1.5 katori)
|10:30 p.m.||Unsweetened jasmine green tea (1 cup)|
- Start your day with soaked nuts and lukewarm amla water
- Eat sprouts and steamed vegetables and a chia seed and apple and almond smoothie for breakfast
- For lunch, eat a bowl of quinoa pulao with tofu and spinach, served with 1.5 katori of mixed vegetable raita
- Two pieces of oil-free oat cheela and 1.5 katori of Soya Matar ki Sabzi should make up your dinner
- End your day with a cup of unsweetened jasmine green tea
Following this diet plan will help you significantly improve your protein intake. You can find a 7 day balanced diet.
It is extremely important to ensure that your protein intake is maintained and daily requirements are met.
Reap the nutritional benefits, even if you are a vegetarian, simply by eating the 7 protein-rich foods mentioned above. As a non-vegetarian, you can learn how to increase your protein intake while limiting your fat intake.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q. How do vegetarians get enough protein?
A. Vegetarians can get protein by making smart preparation choices by combining lentils with grains (because it makes complete protein), selecting protein-rich foods like paneer, tofu, legumes, peas , whole legumes, green leafy vegetables, broccoli.
Q. How can vegetarians get 150 grams of protein per day?
A. Vegetarians can get their daily protein requirement, 150 grams, from beans, peas, chickpeas, mixed seeds, cheese, etc.
Q. Which fruit has the most protein?
A. Avocado is considered to have the highest amount of protein i.e. 100 grams of avocado consists of 3 grams of protein.
Q. Do vegetarians lose weight faster?
A. There is no evidence to back up the claim that vegetarians lose weight faster than people who eat meat. Emphasis should be placed on a balanced diet rich in protein foods to lose weight.
Q. Which Dal is high in protein?
A. Moong Dal is rich in protein. A 100 gram serving of Moong Dal contains 6.1 grams of protein.
Q. Which vegetable has the most protein?
A. Each 100 gram serving of green peas contains 7.2 grams of protein. Thus, green peas are the vegetable known to have an abundance of protein.
Q. Are oats high in protein?
A. Yes, oats are a high protein food. Each 100 grams of oats contains 13.6 grams of protein. So you can add oats to meet your protein needs for the day.
Q. As a vegetarian, how can I get 75 grams of protein per day?
A. You can divide your breakfast, lunch, and dinner accordingly to receive the proper amount of protein. Wholemeal bread with oats or peanut butter is ideal for breakfast, you can have sautéed vegetables with quinoa for lunch and as for dinner prepare a salad of spinach and tofu.
Q. Is peanut butter high in protein?
A. Yes, peanut butter is an excellent source of vegetable protein. 1 tablespoon of peanut butter contains 4 grams of protein.
Q. Are apples high in protein?
A. No apple is high in protein. 1 medium apple provides 1 gram of protein.
Q. What is the best source of protein for vegetarians?
A. Chickpeas, tofu and green peas are the best source of protein for vegetarians. They can be safely eaten daily and vegetarians can include them in their daily diet.
Q. Which vegetables have more protein than meat?
A. Broccoli, spinach, green peas and asparagus are vegetables that contain more protein than meat.
Q. Is cooked spinach high in protein?
A. 1 cup of cooked spinach is higher in protein than 1 cup of raw spinach because the density of spinach per serving increases when cooked. While a cup of raw spinach provides 0.9 grams of protein, a cup of cooked spinach provides 1.7 grams of protein.
Q. Is the mushroom high in protein?
A. Mushrooms are packed with protein and 1 cup of mushrooms, chunks and slices contain 2.2 grams of protein.
Q. Do some fruits contain protein?
A. Guava, avocado, bananas and blackberries are excellent sources of protein.