Vegan health: Protein

But but but really…where do you get it?

I appreciate the concern, I do.

The thing is that while some animal sources are higher in protein than their vegan equivalents, the protein you’re also consuming from these sources is highly acidic, and therefore potentially the cause of osteoporosis (1 , 2), diabetes & cancer development. See also breast cancer developmentStudies have shown that the countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis are also those with the highest intake of milk and dairy products (Dr McDougall, 2000).

So, you want to be a millionare bodybuilder? #gymlyfe

Think you’ll starve on a vegan diet?

Ever heard of Patrik Baboumian? Neither. But apparently he’s a record holding vegan strongman from Iran, who can lift 190kg! If I was a gym bro, that would be enough to convince me. But if you’re a budding athlete and need some more inspo, click here.

So, firstly, how much protein do you need?

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.17.48.pngScreen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.18.00.png


Screenshots from:

So back to the question. Where do I get my protein?

    1. Seitan – 75g per 100g

Now I’m not going to pretend to be an expert on this one, since I can’t say I use it often, or at all. But you have to admit that 75% protein is pretty damn high, with most ‘high protein meats and dairy’ being ~20-27% protein (Body Building, 2016). So I’m going to hand this one over to the worshippers of seitan.

2. TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein) – 50g per 100

This one tastes like mince meat, or so I’m told. Very good for pasta.

3. Soybeans – 36g per 100 (fresh), 9g per 100 (canned)

*Other beans range from 8-30g per 100 depending on the type

4. Nuts ~8g – 22g per 100

5. Lentils – 24g per 100 (fresh), 4.8g per 100 (canned)

6. Quinoa – 14g per 100

7.  Tempeh – 19g per 100

8. Tofu – 8g per 100

9. Hummus – 8g per 100 (made of chickpeas)

10. Rice (depends on type) ~2.7g per 100

11. Fruits & Vegetables (highly variable) but ~0.5-2.5g per 100

Keep in mind that while there are many other protein sources these are the ones that I think would be easiest to consume in larger amounts. For example, sunflower seeds are also a great source of protein, but what’s the chances that you’re going to want to eat 100g of them? Not high. My dietary protein sources usually consist of fruit and veg, rice, qunioa, tofu, lentils and beans. But, please don’t stress over protein levels. If you’re consuming enough calories per day, chances are you’re getting more than enough protein.




“20 Meatless High Protein Foods (Vegetarian Protein Sources)”. Bembu. N.p., 2017. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.

Lanou, A. J. “Should Dairy Be Recommended As Part Of A Healthy Vegetarian Diet? Counterpoint”. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 89.5 (2009): 1638S-1642S. Web.

Levine, Morgan E. et al. “Low Protein Intake Is Associated With A Major Reduction In IGF-1, Cancer, And Overall Mortality In The 65 And Younger But Not Older Population”. Cell Metabolism 19.3 (2014): 407-417. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.

McDougall, John A and Mary A McDougall. The Mcdougall Program For Women. 1st ed. New York: Dutton, 1999. Print.

“Protein | Nutrient Reference Values”. N.p., 2017. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.

“The Ultimate List Of 40 High-Protein Foods!”. N.p., 2017. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.

Vivian Goldschmidt, MA. “Proven: Excessive Animal Protein Consumption Hurts More Than Just Your Bones”. N.p., 2017. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.

“Your Guide To Vegetarian Protein Sources”. Australian Healthy Food Guide. N.p., 2017. Web. 3 Jan. 2017.


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