Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Where do you get your Protein?

Many people who practice yoga also practice a Vegetarian or Vegan lifestyle.  Some people practice vegetarian/vegan diets to practice Ahimsa अहिंसा (non harming to all living things), some do this because they love animals, some do this because they are anti-meat industry, and some just prefer veggies.  The truth is a plant based diet provides optimal benefits for health and wellness due to the prana प्राण (vital life force energy), the high amounts of oxygen, water and vitamins that are easily absorbed into the body.  While many studies like the China Study, or Gershon Theraphy have brought light to the benefits of plant based diets, which has been the normal lifestyle for many Indians for centuries.  

Yet, still many people question where they get protein.  The reality is our human body does not have the ability to properly break down the proteins in meat, we lack the necessary amount of hydrochloric acid in the stomache, bile in our liver, and it is taxing on our colon.  

Some Yogis in India when brought into the debate of eating meat, the question will be said that our human body is designed to eat meat, and the response is, then go bite a cow.  The hilarious reality is, an animal can go bite into another animal, but we cannot and do not, do that.

I myself have a love for animals, I have extensively researched the benefits of plant based diets, and the dangers of meat based diets.  From a scientific perspective, I am so glad to have lived a vegetarian life with an abundance of energy and stronger immune system.  From a spiritual perspective, I feel a sense of connection to this Universe and a love for animals beyond just petting a puppy.  From a superficial perspective, my hair that is shinny, my nails are strong, my skin is clear, and my body is fit due to a healthy liver, colon, and kidneys as a result of a plant based diet.  Our health on the outside is a reflection of our health on the inside, which is from our dietary habits.  We can see how cancer rates, obesity, and many other diseases can be linked to meat based diets, so why not make the conscious change to better health?  While dark green veggies are the best source of calcium that our human body can absorb, and nuts provide protein and healthy fats, and spirulina is a wonderful amino acid protein.....here is a list of my top 10 other sources of protein.

Top 10 veggie lovers protein sources.
  1. QUINOA - 1 CUP - 11g of protein
  2. LENTILS - 1 CUP - 18g of protein
  3. SEITAN - 4oz - 30g of protein
  4. TEMPEH - 4oz -25g of protein
  5. BLACK BEANS - 1 CUP - 15g of protein
  6. CHICK PEAS - 1 CUP - 12g of protein
  7. SPINACH - 1 CUP - 5g of protein
  8. MUNG BEANS - 1 CUP - 14g of protein
  9. KIDNEY BEANS - 1 CUP - 14g of protein
  10. SOY BEANS - 1 CUP - 29g of protein

These are just a list of options for people wanting to embrace this lifestyle.  Juicing is also a wonderful addition to daily diet.  I realize that many carnivorous people find this topic annoying, and I understand that people have their own perceptions & beliefs, so perhaps just substituting some plant based options may be the first step. 

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