Unlike carbohydrates, fat and similar micronutrients, protein has an almost spotless reputation and you will rarely hear anything bad about it. Protein is hold in high esteem, and we are constantly being told to aim at getting enough of it. While most people associated protein with animal products, the truth is that there are many vegetarian options that are packed with protein, too.
Although eggs are an excellent source of protein and other nutrients, high intake may result in development of sensitivity or allergy. This happens very often, forcing the individual to take a long break and do some gut healing.
Therefore, having other options on the table is a good idea. But, before we get into those options, it is important to discuss some important things regarding protein: what is protein, how much we need, and how much we are supposed to be getting.
What is Protein?
Protein is made up of strings of amino acids that break up into individual amino acids when protein is digested. Hence, taking a group of amino acids and stringing them together creates protein.
Each amino acid has its own role and can do exceptional things, for instance, an amino acid called phenylalanine ends up as dopamine. There are two types of amino acids: non-essential and essential.
Why Do We Need Protein?
Protein is needed for a wide variety of reasons, without it our body would start breaking down muscle tissue in order to get the amino acids needed to survive.
One of the most important roles of protein is its ability to help repair and build muscle mass. It also creates neurotransmitters like melatonin, dopamine, and serotonin.
Neurotransmitters are of utmost importance, as without them we wouldn’t be able to function. Protein also plays a significant role in the production of enzymes, hormones, and antibodies. Simply put, protein is essential for optimal health and without it our body wouldn’t function properly.
How Much Protein Do We Need?
As recommended by the World Health Organization, minimum of 13 g/lb of protein per bodyweight a day is needed to stay alive and prevent muscle loss. The official WHO recommendation for protein consumption is 30g/lb. Of course, the range depends on things like duration, type, physical activity, age, and many more. For instance, elderly people have slightly higher protein requirement than the average consumption recommendation by the WHO.
How Can We Get Protein?
The most well-known sources of protein include animal products like eggs, fish, and meat. However, you can also get all your protein from plant sources, too. Here you have a list of 10 foods that contain more protein than an egg.
10 Foods That Have More Protein Than An Egg
1. Almond Butter
50 grams of almond butter provide 10 grams of protein! Is it also a good source of vitamin E, biotin, manganese, and healthy fats.
2. Hemp Hearts
50 grams of hemp hearts provide 16 grams of protein. They are packed with omega-3 fats as well, and are easy to include in your daily diet. You can sprinkle them on salads or add them to smoothies.
3. Pumpkin Seeds
50 grams of protein provide 8 grams of protein as well as solid amounts of magnesium needed for energy usage in the body.
4. Nutritional Yeast
50 grams of protein offer staggering 25 grams of protein. Also known as Noosh, nutritional yeast is also packed with vitamin B-12.
Dulse is a sea vegetable that is packed with protein, fiber, iodine, and potassium. 50 grams of dulse offer 6 grams of protein! It is highly versatile and can be used in salads, soups, or made into wraps.
Chlorella is an algae used to help with heavy metal detoxification. As little as 50 grams of chlorella provide up to 29 grams of protein. It is also loaded with calcium, iron, magnesium, and vitamin A.
It has 28g or protein per 50 g. It also helps with heavy metal detox and supplies the body with solid amount of vitamin B, magnesium, potassium, and vitamin K.
Tahuni, roasted or crushed sesame seeds, has 10 grams of protein per 50 grams. It is packed with potent anti-inflammatory properties and minerals like zinc, manganese, and magnesium.
9. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds can be used as replacement for eggs in baking or simply added in a smoothie. They are packed with omega-3 fatty acids and offer 9 grams of protein per 50 grams.
10. Cacao Nibs
Last but not least, cacao nibs have 7 grams of protein per 50 grams. They contain enzymes needed for digestion and are packed with magnesium, calcium, and fiber.