In 2018 veggie diets are on trend more than ever before, with the help of social media, this popular diet has become a hot topic. There are many factors influencing people to follow a plant based diet, whether it be environmental, religious or financial. Following a vegetarian diet can be just as nutritious as any other, so long as it is planned correctly!
The main focus should be providing your body with the right protein as vegetarian diets often lack a mixture of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, there are 20 amino acids altogether, 8 of which need to come from the diet. It is common that when you think of protein the first thing that comes to mind is meat, however there are plenty of other sources that fit the bill. Knowing where you can get your alternative protein from is important, so here are some great protein sources for veggies;
- Animal protein: Milk, cheese, eggs
- Legumes: Beans, lentils
- Mycoprotein: Quorn
- Plants: Cereals, nuts, potatoes, soya
These protein sources contain varying amounts of essential amino acids, so by combining 2 groups together it’s likely you’ll be getting an adequate intake. A good example is the childhood favourite, beans on toast. The grains from the toast are high in certain amino acids which the beans low in and vice versa, so together they are the perfect match!
Another perfect match is eggs on toast, there are so many variations for this classic dish so perfect for a protein packed lunch!
My personal favourite is scrambled eggs on toast:
- Add 1/2 tbsp. of coconut oil to a frying pan on medium heat.
- Whisk 2 eggs and add them to the pan.
- Start toasting the bread when you have added the eggs to the pan.
- Slowly mix the eggs around the pan, making sure they don’t stick to the bottom, (it takes no more than 5 minutes for them to scramble – so keep an eye on them!)
- When your toast has popped, just add your eggs on-top and you’ve got a yummy nutritious lunch!
P.S I like to add spinach to mine to mix up the flavour!
Reference: Mann, J. & Truswell, S, A. (2007). Essentials of Human Nutrition.