Going meat-free: Best meat protein replacements

by Shar Ray
(Arizona, USA)

As research and anecdotal evidence supports the idea that eschewing meat for plant-based protein is heart-healthy and can be a significant help in any weight loss plan, food manufacturers and supermarkets are responding to consumer demand by offering healthier options.

As such, there are fewer excuses for eating meat with every meal – especially animal protein that has been raised in large, industrial facilities where hormone and antibiotic use abounds.

Best Meat Protein Replacements

One of the most obvious choices for meat-free protein is soy, whether it is consumed in the form of tofu, soy milk, edamame, soy burgers or soy-based yogurt. Research indicates that this plant is not only a cholesterol-free source of muscle-building protein, but is also good for the cardiovascular system and may even lower the risk of cancer.

Tempeh is another soy-based meat alternatives that has been showing up in abundance on menus at vegetarian and progressive restaurants. It differs from tofu in both flavor and texture, as it has a nutty taste and is much chewier than its silken – some say "mushy" - counterpart.

Another plant-based food that is gaining popularity is seitan, a meat substitute made from wheat protein. Basically, when the bran and starch are removed from the grain, what's leftover is healthy protein, which is then processed into seitan. This alternative is also more flavorful and chewier than tofu.

If mock meats aren't your thing, there are plenty of other rich sources of plant-based protein. Perhaps one of the best options is quinoa, a grain that contains all essential amino acids and iron, making it nutritionally very comparable to meat. Moreover, it's easier to cook than rice and has a neural, nutty flavor that pairs well with any vegetable, spice or fat you add to it.

Looking for a crunchy snack that is both filling, heart-healthy and tastes indulgent? Search no further than nuts. Almonds, walnuts, peanuts and cashews are all high in protein, minerals, fiber and fats that are known to be good for the heart, yet don't contribute to weight gain. If you're feeling deficient in protein, keeping nuts around to snack on is a great way to boost your intake of this nutrient and curb hunger throughout the day.

Beans are known as "the musical fruit," but did you know they're also packed with protein, fiber and other nutrients? Moreover, they may be one of the more versatile foods around. Simply add your favorite bean or legume – whether they be black beans, kidney beans, cannellini beans, chick peas or lentils – to soups or salads for a easy nutrition boost. Additionally, most beans and legumes can be made into an easy dip or spread by pureeing them with olive oil and spices.
However you choose to incorporate meat-free protein in your diet, know that you're making a dietary choice that is good for your heart and muscle tone. Additionally, consuming less meat is thought to lower your carbon footprint, so you may even be benefiting the planet as a whole.


Shar Ray
- Dahn Yoga is one of the largest yoga and tai chi companies in the world with its own unique style and brand of yoga. Dahn Yoga is rooted in the rich history of an ancient Asian mind-body practice, Sun Do, and in the wisdom of the Chun Bu Kyung.

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Dec 11, 2012
answer this topic
by: loans

Just use protein powder, it is not bad.

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