Last week I was having lunch at a local restaurant with my wife when two young ladies were seated next to us.
They both looked healthy and in great shape.
I heard them going through the menu trying to decide what to order.
I wasn’t eavesdropping.
Our tables were basically on top of each other.
After ordering their lunch of mostly vegetables, one of the women seemed very concerned that she wasn’t getting enough protein in her diet now that she had cut back on animal protein.
As a coach, I couldn’t just sit quietly, I had to reassure her that even though animal protein usually has more protein per gram,
Vegetables ALSO pack a PROTEIN punch.
Vegetables are nutrient rich whole foods that are sometimes overlooked for the amount of protein they pack.
I’m writing this article for both Vegetarians and Omnivores. My goal is to make you aware that vegetables are a good source of protein in addition to meats, nuts and seeds.
Here are 5 vegetables that pack the BIGGEST PROTEIN PUNCH:
* Peas are technically a legume, but I added them on my list because many people put them in the same family as vegetables .
The protein in peas double when they are cooked, making them one of the highest on the list.
Peas are also a great source of Vitamin K, C and B1.
1 cup uncooked/ cooked
Protein 8.2 g/ 16g
Fiber 7g/ 16g
Calories 118/ 231
2. Collard Greens
* Collard greens are not usually first on most shopping lists but if your looking to increase protein and eat more vegetables this is a great addition.
Packed with folate, Vitamin A, B and K collard greens are a go to for anyone looking for a superfood.
1 cup cooked
Protein 5 g
Fiber 5 g
*Popeye was no fool, he ate his spinach and was strong to the finish. If you want to get the most protein from spinach you need to cook it. Cooking spinach breaks down the cell wall and releases more of its nutrients then just eating it raw.
1 Cup uncooked/ cooked
Protein .86g/ 5.4g
Fiber .7g/ 4g
Calories 7/ 40
*This is one of my favorite vegetables on the grill.
Asparagus contains inulin a type of prebiotic that promotes the growth of good gut bacteria.
1 cup cooked
I’m adding a bonus vegetable on this list. It’s one of my favorite vegetables and a very popular vegetable in the TFW community.
* This super vegetable is clinically proven to LOWER the risks of certain types of CANCER.
This is why I had to add this superpower to the list. Broccoli is also a great source of vitamin K, C and Folate.
1 Cup steamed
There are many other sources of protein that can be found in animal products, nuts, seeds and legumes.
However, you can find quality protein in vegetables.
So, next time your sitting looking at a menu wondering if vegetables are a good source of protein feel confident that these nutrient dense foods will build you up.
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This article was written by TFW Mahopac owner and Nutrition Coach Bill Felice