Thursday, March 29, 2012

Are you eating the right foods?

The other day it occurred to me that there are probably a lot of raw, vegan, and vegetarian eaters that really have no clue where to get their protein, essential vitamins and minerals from, or even more, how much they should be taking in on a daily basis.  All they know is they quit eating meat, or meat and dairy, and do not realize how IMPORTANT it is to make sure you are getting the protein, vitamins and minerals you need from a plant and herb base diet.

So I decided to help a sister out and put out some very important information.
1st.....the protein subject....
Protein is a central part of the body's energy, it provides for the repair and replication of organs and cells. It comprises a large portion of the blood and lymph and creates a natural immunity, by recognizing invading foreign cells and viruses. Protein is made up of amino acids, the " building blocks" of our body. 8 of the amino acids are essential because the cannot be produced inside the body; they must be obtained from the food we eat. 2 are considered semi-essential because they are considered necessary for proper growth in children. The other 12 are produced in the body. Proper quantities of the 22 are necessary to maintain a healthy body, helping in the construction of new tissue, enzymes and hormones
So where do we get this plant based protein? There are quite a few sources that I have listed below.

Sun Warrior raw protein powder-17 grams of protein per scoop-I use 2
I have a blendtec blender, and this is how I start my day..
In my blender I put:
ice, coconut water, banana, strawberries (if fresh or frozen make sure they are organic) I use frozen and fresh, depending on what time of year it is.
2 scoops protein powder-this is my base, then I build from there.

These are the other possibilities depending how I am feeling every morning.
hemp seeds, chia seeds, goji berries, aloe vera gel,  bee pollen, maca, chlorella tablets,blue green algae, coconut oil, hemp oil, cacao beans, amla, mangosteen, shilajit, holy basil, mucuna.
Hemp seeds, hemp oil, and blue green algae all have protein.

So if you want to know how many grams of  protein you should take in per day, try this formula:
Take your weight and multiply it by .4536 then divide by 2.

I need 32 grams of protein, so here is my list of plant based protein sources along with the raw protein powder.
Blue Green Algae is a complete protein source consisting of 60% protein and 18 amino acids and easily assimilated.
Spirulina contains the highest form of protein by weight of any known food-65-71% protein,
These 2 ingredients can be bought in powder and thrown into a smoothie, or purchased in a capsule.
Hemp Seeds are 35% protein and contain all the essential amino acids and essential fatty acids to maintain a healthy life.

You also need to make sure you are getting A, D, E, K, and B
Vitamin A: One of the best sources for vitamin A is astaxathin supplement. I have written several blogs on this supplement, so just scroll through my posts. Also blue green algae and cholrella.
Other sources are: sweet potatoes, pumpkin, kale, cantaloupe, apricots, peaches and mangos..
Vitamin E: Nuts and seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach, tomatoes, olive oil.
Vitamin K: Kale, spinach, collard greens.
B Vitamins: Bee Pollen is a source of 18 vitamins including all the B's except for B12. It also includes C,D, and E. It is predigested and easy to assimilate.
According to the National Institute of Health we should be taking in 2-4 mcg of B12 daily.
I use alot of nutritional yeast in my preparation of many dishes. 1 TBL of nutritional yeast is 4mcg of B12.
If you are not eating nutritional yeast, make sure you are taking a multiple vitamin with B12 in it, or better yet include blue green algae in your smoothie, or get it in capsule form. 1 gram of blue green algae contains 6 mcg of B12 . Blue green algae is the most nutrient dense food on the planet, containing glyco-proteins, vitamins, minerals, simple carbohydrates, lipids and enzymes.

This list is by no means all inclusive, but it is a good start.
My hope is that anyone that chooses a raw, vegan or vegetarian diet will see the importance of making sure you are adequately taking care of yourself and puttig the right foods into your body, not just substituting  meat and dairy with carbohydrates, sugar and junk food. Your body is a living organism and what you feed it will determine how you live. The last thing we want to do is battle sickness because we are not giving our bodies the proper nutrients to keep us well.
Hyppocrates said it so well, "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food"

Until next time,

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