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Proteins in Vegetables

We were sitting around the dining room table just the other day, discussing protein. No, I am not kidding – we really were! When I think of “protein,” my mind goes directly and swiftly to the thought of beef, pork, chicken, eggs and fish. Well, apparently there may be more protein in vegetables than in meat!

Are you as surprised as me?

Who would have known that common vegetables have much more protein than you need, and contrary to popular myth, they're complete proteins?

The reason you've heard otherwise is, like me, you probably haven't bothered to look up the actual numbers. So let's look at what the science actually says — as well as what doctors and dietitians who are actually familiar with protein say.

We need only 2.5 to 11% of our calories from protein, according to peer-reviewed research and that amount is easily supplied by common vegetables. Vegetables average around 22% protein by calorie, beans 28%, and grains 13. Protein is one of the easiest nutrients to get and all foods have plenty of protein. In other words, every “whole food” is a "source of protein". You don't have to eat certain, special foods to get protein. You just have to eat any “whole food”. That's it.

There is a site called: and they have pretty much any and every vegetable you can ever think of and it lists every single protein, vitamin or mineral it contains – it is an amazing site; I would not have believed it if I had not seen it for my own eyes!!

Live and Learn

Author: Kathryn Hartwell

References: and


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