QUESTION: I would like to eat less animal products. How can I be assured of getting enough protein in my diet?
ANSWER: It’s important to understand that Americans, in general, consume far more protein than they need. And, where there is animal protein, there is also fat and cholesterol. Beans, grains, nuts and fruits and vegetables provide protein without the negative effects from animal sources. Low-fat and skim milk, cheese and yogurt are other good choices. Overall, the Institute of Medicine’s Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) recommends that approximately 45-65% of calories come from carbohydrates, 10-35% from protein and 20-35% from fat. These percentages hold true for active individuals, as well. To overcome the increased demands of exercise consume more calories.
Recently, a friend introduced me to a super-food that contains more protein than milk, meat or eggs! It’s the perfect way to add a plant-based, heart-healthy protein into your diet. The product is Hemp Hearts. This nutty, grain-like protein is the most concentrated source of essential nutrients known. Sprinkle 4-5 tablespoons on cereal, yogurt or fresh fruit to add calcium, essential fats and minerals to your breakfast. You can also top salads or stir-fries or add it to smoothies for more nutrition and flavor.
Hemp Hearts contain all the essential Omega fats needed for human health. Those who are unable to consume gluten, sugar, nuts or meat will find Hemp Hearts to be a suitable addition to their diet. For more info go to: www.hemphearts.com
Where can you purchase Hemp Hearts? Go to your nearest health food store or order online.
I usually add 2 tablespoons to my morning oatmeal before topping with fruit and yogurt.