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The Protein Noise

Probably the most asked question and myth around Plant-powered diet is about our favorite macro nutrition, protein. ‘How can you possibly get enough protein when you do not eat meat and diary?‘ I too was concerned about this element at the start of my Plant-powered journey, however, I found out that the contrary is true.

We live in times in which we are possessed by protein consumption. ‘Proteinaholic’ by Garth Davis, MD , presents us with an evidence – based case of why such an obsession for protein, meat protein in particular, takes place and makes us ill, fat and tired. The fact is that whether you are an athlete or a couch potato the copious amounts of meat protein are not going to do you any good. The animal protein is a circus of factory farmed, hormone and pesticide fueled, low in fiber foods that are extremely high in saturated fat.

However, let’s not be mistaken. Protein is essential nutrient. It is not only critical to repair or build muscle tissue, but its role in wide range of important body functions is crucial. So does it make really any difference if our protein comes from meat or plants? And how much do we need?

Protein consists of twenty different amino acids. Eleven of which can be naturally produced by our bodies. The remaining nine, that are called essential amino acids, must be derived from foods that we eat. From technical point of view, we require certain amino acids, not protein in itself. In spite of that, these nine essential amino acids are not available only from animals. Actually, they are synthesized by plants and found in meat and dairy products just because these animals have eaten plants. In fact, they are found in bountiful amounts in a wide variety of grains, nuts, seeds, vegetables and legumes. So in common sense, if your diet contains well rounded variety of these plant based foods, it is impossible for our bodies to be deficient in ability to properly digest all the proteins it needs for correct tissue maintenance and repair.

Let’s just skip the fact that most people procure their protein consuming animal foods, which tend to contain a whole shebang of unhealthy byproducts. On the other hand, with Plant-power diet, one needs to obtain the nine essential amino acids from plant based foods, which are digested much easier and processed differently by our bodies from animal based proteins. Now, let’s get nitty gritty here. Recommended daily allowance (RDA) is 0.8 grams per kilogram of protein. Meanwhile, studies show that the requirements of the athlete don’t exceed RDA recommendation. The World Health Organisation even recommends that men and women only need 5 percent calories as protein, which is a half of RDA amount. And still, most of the people, of whom are mainly sedentary, manage to have intake 2 – 5 times higher than RDA.

‘So how do I get protein that I need without animal foods?’ Simple. If we spread it over a course of the day, having a homemade green smoothie and toast with peanut butter for breakfast, bean salad with quinoa for lunch and lentils, edamame beans, barley, tofu and spinach and broccoli is going to take you where you need to be. And to really hit the nail on it’s head, even if you would eat nothing else than variety of fresh fruits, you still would not suffer protein deficiency nor missing out on particular amino acid. Even though eating only fruits is a little bit extreme, but enjoy diet of legumes, grains, seeds, nuts, fruits and green vegetables throughout the day and there is no way that you are not going to meet your daily requirements of essential amino acids.

On the days when I train and feel fatigued, travel a lot, or when I didn’t eat enough plant based foods high in protein, I do include a small amount of plant based protein powder in my smoothie as a safeguard. Personally, I use Nutrilite All Plant Protein, which is organic, made from soy, wheat and peas. They can actually trace all the nutrition from the product to its very origin as a seed in a soil, as well as time and date when it’s been planted, harvested and turned into a supplement. And I started to include spirulina in my green smoothies. It is a fresh water algae phytonutrient super food, which boosts protein content of 60 – 65 percent by weight.

With respect to all athletes and people of all possible activities, I could not find a scientific study, which would show that protein consumption beyond RDA advised minimum, helps additional growth nor physiological repair induced by exercise stress. On the other hand, there are numerous studies proving that excess protein intake from animal based sources can significantly contribute to set in motion a variety of diseases such as osteoporosis, cancer, kidney malfunction as well as heart disease.

Proteins found in milk are not only packed with hormones, as they meant to serve as feed for baby kettle, but also high in casein, which can be a huge contributor to several maladies, including cancer. What makes me sick as well as admire the industry for their genius is invention of whey protein. Whey is nothing less than a low grade, highly processed discard of cheese production. The diary industry created billion dollar business out of stuff that had been previously tossed into unwanted rubbish. Yet, many stores sell these giant cans with packed up muscle man on its cover in bulk for ridiculous money, when its value production as well as nutrition wise is worth nearly big fat nothing.

The protein craze is over hyped and harmful. Why instead of steak, chicken, eggs, milk and whey supplements not to try plant based sources such as black or kidney, and many other beans, Brazil nuts, almonds, legumes, linen, chia or hemp seeds, spirulina or tempeh.

And if you are still unsure, consider this . The most ferocious animals on the planet like an elephant, gorilla, rhino and hippo, they all get their protein from plants, one hundred percent of it.

Peace & Love

 

Becoming Conscious

Autumn has slowly crept in, but it seems that summer is not ready to give up. Air is fresh and crisp with sun beaming through the bright sky. I cannot help myself but slip down the memory lane and remember last month, when we set out for an amazing journey to Poland. Me and my girls, Julia and Livi. The weather was splendid as well as the surroundings and company of our friends and family. Every day was packed with action. We stayed in Poznan for about a week and then traveled to Kamionek. Small village with magnificent trails to run or ride, situated on the side of Kamieniec Lake. However, it was utterly different experience that I’m very grateful for. Part of our family living there is running their own, sustainable, organic farm. Being able to help around and experience the nitty-gritty from first hand was eye opening and real.

Before leaving for our family journey I had made a decision, that I’m going to start Plant power diet at the very instant of our return back to UK. Now, me and my wife have stopped eating meat few months ago. Even though we experienced setbacks, like going to a party and eating odd slice of chicken or pork, we still kept eating fish and dairy. It wasn’t until I started to do my research and came across a book by Rich Roll, titled ‘Finding Ultra’, that made me consider and really deeply think to go all the way. Give up meat, fish, dairy and anything that was produced or came as a by-product from animals.

I’m three weeks in and feel amazing! I feel having more energy, recover faster after physical activities and being more productive. Plus, being completely honest, I find it very satisfying to know that my money do not support this chaos and atrocious actions by producers farming on the LARGE scale. Exploiting not only us, but more importantly our environment. On the contrary, I rather support small, sustainable farms and businesses, which control all the produce from the seed to the plant. What goes into to soil to feed the plants and therefore the quality of the final product.

What do you think about replacing meat produce and diary with plants? Do you agree that we can shift the consequences of industrial actions as well as ours by simply becoming conscious consumers and choose, where we spend our money and what we get in return?

 

Cheers & Love

 

Featured

No need for meat

Today marks four weeks since me and my wife have decided to reduce meat from our diet and eat only plant based food, diary and fish. I can’t believe that I actually say that, but the results are incredible! I used to be a huge ‘meat eater’ – chicken, beef, pork – the complete shebang. If there wasn’t meat on my plate than it wasn’t a proper meal. However, being able to work closely with nutrition and dietary specialists helping my clients to better their health and general well being made me rethink many aspects of my own life. That, and Julia – my wife – has a great impact.

First of all, most of my clients have had serious health complications such as thyroid disorder, issues with metabolism, weak immune system, diabetes etc. Through elementary hair analysis we are able to asses the nutrition levels of organism based on quantity and ratio of  elements in hair. This modern diagnostic tests the level of the most important elements in the human body – 24 bio-elements and 5 toxic elements. Based on the results, we are able to draw up an appropriate supplementation and diet program.

When I have done my own elementary analysis, and suited my diet to the nutritional needs of my organism, it helped me tremendously. However, it’s now when I fully control what I eat, that makes me more fulfilled and happy. The realization that the gut is a second brain was crucial. Our brain is actually constantly communicating with the gut by countless chemical reactions. Our decision not to eat meat is based on difficulty to obtain quality and high standard. The process and sustainability of farming, mainly thanks to the supermarkets, is very close to non existent. Add martyrdom which animals go through by being overfed with compound feed, little movement and being slaughtered in a mechanical fashion just to satisfy the demand which have been created and you have a perfect outcome for disaster.

Secondly, it was the knowledge gained by my wife, which didn’t make me hesitate to apply these changes. Her creativity with recipes is astounding me every day. I mean how can you pimp up vegetables into a something comparable to fine dining?! As I mentioned earlier, we still consume fish and dairy, but we certainly choose where it comes from and the way it had been produced. The same regards supplements and many other factors which surround us as a consumers and are a necessity for ones being. If it’s well or bad being, that’s all down to us.

I would have never said that one day I’ll be writing and talking about such topic, which can easily develop into cause, but I take it as my responsibility to share something that had put a spring into my step. And if it’s a ONE person, who is going to take something away from it, and finds it helpful in one way or another, then that’s what makes me buzz.

Cheers & Love