Being a Vegan : Getting Protein in a Vegan Diet

Uploaded by expertvillage on 12.12.2007

Hello, I'm Robert Cheeke, president of Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness here in Portland,
Oregon. And today on behalf of Expert Village, I'm doing a tutorial all about being vegan.
In this clip, I'm going to talk about how to get protein on a vegan diet. Now one thing
we have to ask ourselves is really, do we even know, and if we ask ourselves if we know
people in our own community, do we know anyone with a protein deficiency? One thing I think
is really blown out of proportion is this fear that we don't get enough protein, when
clearly a lot of us do. In fact, I would say two thirds of our country, the United States,
get too much protein. We're talking about hundreds, and millions of people that get
too much protein. So protein is easy to find, it's in pretty much everything, especially
in nuts and grains, legumes, green vegetables, things like that, so it's kind of in abundance.
So especially if you're looking at some of these grains over here, you're talking about
quinoa, and millet, and barley and buckwheat, at 22 grams of protein per serving, that's
pretty significant actually. You talk about green vegetables like spinach, where 49 percent
of its calories are coming from protein, so a lot of green vegetables are going to get
you sufficient protein too. Even if we just ate broccoli only, nothing else, we just ate
a mono food, we'd get enough protein just from that, assuming we were taking in adequate
calories from that source. It wouldn't be very tasty, and I wouldn't recommend it, there
wouldn't be much variety in that, but the idea is protein is found in pretty much everything.
Again, nuts is a great source of protein, seeds are a great source, grains are a great
source of protein, and dark green vegetables are a good source of protein. There are fortified
foods and other things too that are going to have protein in them, these vegan replacement
foods, energy bars and things like that. So really, I don't think protein is an issue
that we need to really be concerned with. What we have to do is be aware of where our
nutrition comes from, where we're getting protein, carbohydrates, fats, eat those foods,
and eat a variety of foods. So again, the more variety the better, and if you have a
question about how much protein is in something, just look at the label listed. It will give
you how many grams are listed per serving, and maybe even give a percentage of protein
of the total calories in that food, and then you're okay. As far as how much protein we
need, there's lots of different information out on that. Part of it is based on our age,
and our gender, how active we are, and things like that, maybe even our metabolism, that
could play a factor possibly. So as an athlete, a vegan bodybuilder running,
what I try to tell people on that website is to do about maybe a gram of protein per
pound of body weight, if you're active and lifting weights. If you're just going for
a walk or something else, you probably don't need quite as much. And if you're not active,
then you certainly don't need as much because it's not going to use. So get the protein
you need from a wide variety of plant based whole foods, and you'll be good to go.