Best Protein Sources for Vegan Keto
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Best Protein Sources for Vegan Keto – Thomas DeLauer
So you’re hot on doing the keto thing, but you’re plant-based and you don’t know how you’re going to get your protein without kicking you out of ketosis. It’s a very viable concern and it’s quite frankly, probably the reason why most vegans don’t try a ketogenic protocol. They feel like a ketogenic protocol is all protein and the only way that you can get your protein is either by eating a bunch of soy or by combining a bunch of starches.
Well, the good news is there are some ways around that, and quite honestly, they’re tasty ways and they’re ways that might end up enriching your life. I’ll break down how to get protein on a plant-based keto diet and how to do it properly, and also share the truth with you, so that you don’t fall victim to having to eat a bunch of things you don’t need to be eating.
First off, we have the soy equation. I’m not the biggest fan of soy, but I do think in small amounts it’s okay. You’re going to get all of your nine essential amino acids from soy. That’s the benefit. However, you probably are aware of the negatives. Obviously the estrogen mimicking components; soy mimics estrogen, so it triggers sort of a vicious cycle of estrogen kind of piling up and then your body not being able to process it and you get all this toxicity and what’s called 16 hydroxy estrogen. It’s all these different things that are not good. But the other side of the equation is you’ve got what are called anti-nutrients in it. Anti-nutrients are phytates and things that prevent minerals from actually absorbing.
Secondly, you can have hemp. Hemp is going to have all nine of your essentials. I recommend leaning on hemp whenever can, whether you have hempeh, which is like a fermented hemp that’s made into a patty or whatever, or you just have straight up hemp hearts. High fat, so super good when it comes down to keto. You just don’t want to be skewing too high down the omega-6 road. That’s the other issue that vegans face, is omega-3 to omega-6 balance. I’m going to talk about that in a second.
Nutritional yeast. This is a great way to get an abundance of amino acids. Let’s say you’re having some hemp hearts and you’re having a flax egg that you’ve made like a nice flax cake with and then you’re just looking for something else just to sprinkle on to get some extra amino acids, make a cheese out of nutritional yeast or something like that with a little bit of water. There you go. You’ve got your essential amino acids coming in.
Another thing that I recommend is sacha inchi. This is like a seed and a lot of times it’s made into a powder or you can straight up eat the seed that’s been roasted or anything like that. A nice complete amino acid profile with the essentials and very low carb.
But one of the things that I really have to address here, and this is something that non-plant-based dieters don’t always understand, but a lot of plant-based dieters do, is that pea protein is probably one of the most powerful proteins that you can consume.
There’s a study that was published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition that took a look at test subjects and had them consume either pea protein, whey protein or a placebo.
161 males, aged 18 to 35 years underwent 12 weeks of resistance training on upper limb muscles:
Pea protein (n = 53), Whey protein (n = 54) or Placebo (n = 54) group
All had to take 25 g of the proteins or placebo twice a day during the 12-week training period
Increases in thickness were significantly greater in the Pea group as compared to Placebo whereas there was no difference between Whey and Pea
Performing a sensitivity study on the weakest participants (with regards to strength at inclusion), thickness increases were significantly different between groups (+20.2%, +15.6% and +8.6% for Pea, Whey and Placebo, respectively)
Increase in the maximum concentric torque between D0 and D84 was +8.8 N.m for the Placebo group, +10.9 N.m for Whey group and +10.7 N.m for Pea group
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