Have you turned vegan, thinking of the planet, and now worried about your protein options? Things may seem hard in the beginning when you switch to a vegan diet.
The general perception is that there aren't many sources for essential amino acids in plant-based food and, therefore, not much protein and no massive muscles. This can hit you pretty hard, but don't give in just yet: do a bit of research on plant-based proteins, and you will have some great options to choose from.
Amino acids and proteins are necessary for a muscular silhouette, and plants may not be as great for proteins as animals, but that was just a talk of the past. Research has shown us many ways to fulfill our protein needs within the realm of veganism. Go for a vegan diet and still build muscle just the same way. No need to choose either one or the other. Build strong muscles with a plant-based diet keeping your protein level up. There is no magic, just information involved here.
What Are Essential Amino Acids?
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and by default, most of what we are. They are essential for the formation of enzymes, neurotransmitters, and some important hormones too. Not just that, they have a role to play in the metabolic system of the body.
This is just an introduction; the real magic is that they come together to form protein which is around 70 percent of our body. One can easily imagine the role they play. There are 20 amino acids that the human body requires: 9 of these are called essential amino acids. They are necessary for the body to function fully, yet they are not produced internally. You must eat them.
Hence the name essential amino acids. They are found in the diet and commonly obtained from meat, cheese, dairy, and poultry.
How Do Vegans Get All Their Amino Acids?
Amino acids form protein, and they are usually obtained through high protein meats like poultry, beef, fish, as well as dairy, and eggs. The protein we eat is broken down to form amino acids, and they, in turn, metabolize food, energize our bodies, repair and form tissues, boost muscle building, help muscle recovery and repair damaged muscles.
Now, believing essential amino acids are found only in meat, cheese and dairy might make vegans feel left out!
Don't worry! all sources of protein are not listed as yet. There are healthy plant-based proteins that will act just the same as their counterparts. And, of course, there are amazing DMoose EAAs supplements to help you perform better and stay strong through extreme weight training.
9 Essential Amino Acids
Here goes the list of 9 essential Amino Acids to get through your diet.
Histidine may be called the front guard of the body. This one is directly linked with the health and efficiency of our immune system. It is important for the normal play of sexual functions and gut performance as well. It also protects against the dangerous impacts of metal and radiation to which we are heavily exposed now more than ever.
The role of Isoleucine is diverse in the body. It is responsible for several highly important functions like secretion of important hormones and Hemoglobin production (oxygen laden red pigment in the blood). It is necessary for immune health, and essential for wound and muscle healing.
It helps with better blood circulation and also controls blood sugar levels. It optimizes the body's energy levels as well.
If muscle mass and especially lean muscle mass, is your concern, you might want to eat foods that contain Leucine in ample amounts. One easy way is to eat foods that contain all of the essential amino acids, like eggs.
Leucine is your healing partner; it helps the body and skin heal and aids speedy muscle recovery. The magic doesn't stop here; it also improves exercise performance. It has a positive impact on HGH production (Human Growth Hormone) and effectively checks the right balance of blood sugar.
If you think about your skin and bones (including cartilage and tendons ), Lysine is what you need to eat. It is thought to help the body absorb calcium and build stronger bones. L-Lysine also produces carnitine, which improves breaking down of more fatty acids for energy and lowers cholesterol levels.
Methionine is critical for various cell functions and cellular -health. The most well-known function of Methionine is to produce sulfur-containing cells, which are amazing as far as proper cell functioning and tissue protection are concerned.
These molecules ( sulfur-laden) can't be made from any other sources. This is a Methionine specialty. It also initiates protein-making processes in the cells.
Phenylalanine is responsible for forming molecules that make new proteins in the body. It is also crucial for forming molecules (Epinephrine and norepinephrine) that help the body fight stress and depression and react to these situations amicably.
It forms dopamine (neurotransmitter), linked with many important functions of memory, learning, and motivation for achievements.
Threonine is the building block of protein like all other amino acids, but additionally, it makes sure of the right balance of protein in the body. It also assists your digestive system and intestines for better functioning. It is vital to fat metabolism in the body and prevents fatty liver.
Nitrogen balance in adults is the responsibility of this essential amino acid. It takes care of growth in infants. The major role that it plays in the formation of Niacin which, in turn, produces Serotonin in the body.
Niacin is linked with optimization of brain functions, easing joint pain, and managing cholesterol levels in the body. It goes by the name of vitamin B3 as well. You can consume it in foods and take supplements too.
Bodybuilders and fitness lovers need this amino acid in their supplements. It is the perfect ingredient for muscle growth and muscle recovery. It is one of the three branches of chain Amino acids BCAAs.
Essential Amino Acids on a Vegan Diet
You might find it hard to believe that all essential amino acids are available in vegan foods because that's mostly what you hear. A little bit of research, and you can break out of this cocoon.
No need to avoid a vegan diet just because you want amino acids anymore, We are listing vegan foods that contain all essential amino acids.
Managing protein is a bit of a task if you are on a vegan diet, so it's thought. But there are many smart and healthier options with so many added benefits. If you search for plant-based foods that make it to the protein list, then quinoa is on the top.
This is a complete protein. It has all essential amino acids in there along with a lot of fiber too. You do not have to worry about your protein intake with this one, and it's damn delicious!
It gives you proteins, it's high in fiber, and it's gluten-free. It's a perfect mix of all things we want! Salads, cereals, or whatever: it rocks anyway, every way!
Buckwheat is a pseudocereal, like quinoa, and contains high-quality proteins. It's not a form of wheat, and it's gluten-free. It's mainly fiber and carbs, and there is not much protein in there. However, the little protein that it has, is very promising.
The amino acid balance is remarkable in buckwheat, which is why it's on the protein high food list for vegans.
3. Sprouted Bread
Well, you probably never thought your bread would be a source of protein for you, but it's possible now. This new bread in trend is made from sprouted seeds, is high in protein and great for your amino acids requirements. It tastes great, it's healthy, and the nutrients in there rank much better on bio-availability.
Sprouted bread is high in fiber, but it has very low carb availability. The reason is the breakdown of carbs during sprouting.
It has a much lower glycemic index compared to most other breads in the market. Sprouted bread is lower in calories than any other whole grain bread. In addition, sprouted bread is high in amino acids and has a higher protein content.
4. Hemp Hearts
Hemp hearts are hemp seeds. You might have heard people showing concerns about the intoxicating or, more accurately, the psychoactive side of hemp, but its seeds do not cause any of these effects.
Hemp seeds are high in protein: 25% of their calories come from high-quality protein. They are a regular choice of protein for vegans. Hemp seeds are a complete protein. It's hard to find plant foods that give you all amino acids, but hemp hearts are one of those rare plant-based proteins.
They taste great and they are easily digestible as well. Add this one thing to your vegan diet, and your body will be grateful forever.
5. Soy Protein
This is usually our go-to choice for protein when we want it to be plant-based. It is a complete protein, best among all plant-based proteins. Soy protein is especially promising for bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts because of its amino-acid profile.
It may not be as amazing as whey protein taste-wise, but soy is perfect for muscle building because it contains all 9 essential amino acids - building blocks of muscle. It's a great source of natural, defatted, and low-carb protein for vegans.
Amino acids are important for our existence; they are building blocks for proteins, which is the building block of the human body. Protein is everywhere in our body: it is essential. Protein is built by 20 amino acids, of which nine are to be eaten through food as the body does not produce them on its own. These are the essential amino acids. They are responsible for performing vital body functions. The most trusted food sources of amino acids are dairy, meat, poultry, and fish. However, if you are a vegan and looking for amino acids diet options, there are some great, beneficial, and even tasty options out there. Try these super plant-based proteins to charge your body for rapid protein synthesis without issues.
- Chavan, J. K., and S. S. Kadam. ‘Nutritional Improvement of Cereals by Sprouting’. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, vol. 28, no. 5, 1989, pp. 401–37. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1080/10408398909527508.
- House, James D., et al. ‘Evaluating the Quality of Protein from Hemp Seed (Cannabis Sativa L.) Products through the Use of the Protein Digestibility-Corrected Amino Acid Score Method’. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, vol. 58, no. 22, Nov. 2010, pp. 11801–07. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1021/jf102636b.
- PubChem. Histidine. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/6274. Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.
- Leucine. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/6106 . Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.
- L-Isoleucine. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/6306. Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.
- L-Lysine,. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/16130064. Accessed 29 Nov. 2021.
- L-Threonine. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/6288. Accessed 29 Nov. 2021.
- Valine. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/6287. Accessed 29 Nov. 2021.
- https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/136/6/1636S/4664439 Accessed 29 Nov. 2021.