Vegetarian diet is most commonly being related to weight losing, rather than getting bigger. The main reason is because it is considered low on protein. The truth is, there are no ‘complete’ or ‘incomplete’ proteins. Proteins are made up of amino acids (9 essential), thus combining different sources of vegetarian protein together can easily fuel your body with the required amino acids.
These are some of the best vegetarian protein sources:
Low Fat Paneer and Tofu
If you are a vegetarian and you want to get more protein in your body, paneer and tofu are your first choice. But with consuming them you are also consuming fat (Macronutrients: Protein~20g, Fats~ 20-25g/100g). Although fats are not bad, consuming 100g fats from tofu/paneer, along with the fat consumed from other food will increase your caloric intake. Consuming low-fat variants of paneer/tofu is your best choice here.
Chia & Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are one of the most overlooked sources of iron and protein out there, containing 8 gram of protein per 1/4 cup. Chia seeds, on the other hand are more popular, containing 5 grams of protein per 2 tablespoons.
Eggs are a great protein source – there are about 6 grams of protein per one large egg. Advice: do not skip the yolk. It does contain cholesterol, but they are also rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that help maintain eye health. Eat no more than two eggs a day and it will be fine.
Lentils and Pulses
Pulses have 20% protein content per 100g which is similar to chicken or fish. Lentils, on the other hand, add 9 grams of protein to your meal per half cup, along with nearly 15 grams of fiber! Both are great sources of protein for the body.
The beans are full of protein and fiber. Eating a variety, such as chickpeas, black beans and heirloom beans will provide the widest range of nutrients. There are about 7 grams of protein per 1/2-cup serving cooked black beans.
Nuts are a gift for vegetarians. Full of calories and proteins and are superb if you want to gain some weight. But even if you don’t intend to gain any weight, you should consume nuts on regular basis, since they are reach in unsaturated fats and proteins. 100g of nuts contain about 20g proteins.