One of the questions that make vegans go bonkers is “Where do you get your protein?”
The other is “Does going vegan make you gassy?”
While protein really shouldn’t be a worry for most well-informed vegans, it is still important to make sure that you are getting enough.
A diet lacking in protein will take its toll on your health as you age.
This is why it is important to eat a lot of beans.
Beans and other legumes are the best protein source for vegans.
They are chockfull of fiber, iron, protein, zinc, calcium, B vitamins, and minerals.
They are also particularly rich in the essential amino acid lysine, which does wonderful things for your bone health.
Mix beans (high in lysine, low in methionine) and rice (high in methionine, low in lysine) and you have a great meal with a protein content the same as that of meat.
The Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) recommends eating two or more servings of beansa day.
These include black beans, kidney beans, navy beans, black-eyed peas, pinto beans, lima beans, Great Northern beans, fava beans, orca beans, soybeans, and garbanzo beans aka chickpeas.
Soy milk, tempeh, tofu, and texturized vegetable protein also fall under this category.
Choosing and Preparing Beans (Or How to Eat Beans Without Getting Gassy)
Beans are usually sold dried, frozen, or canned. While those concerned over BPA might want to steer away from canned beans, it should be noted that the nutrient content of canned beans and dried beans (after cooking) are practically the same.
The major difference is the sodium content.
Canned beans tend to be very high in sodium, so rinse them before using.
Canned beans are convenient but not as flavorful as dried beans.
Frozen is a good option because the nutrients have been flash-frozen inside the beans.
They are also easy to use.
Meanwhile, dried beans are the most inexpensive and the most flavorful.
Soak dry beans before cooking to shorten cooking time, preserves the nutrients, get more evenly textured beans, and remove the indigestible sugars that give you gas.
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