It has been a common concern for people all over the world that even the healthy snacks are not enough to provide the amount of protein that is required for a body to function to its full ability.
So, let us start with the very basics. Proteins are the major structural component of muscle and other body tissues and are used to produce hormones, enzymes, and haemoglobin. Adequate dietary intake of protein is essential for growth and repair of body cells, the normal functioning of muscles, transmission of nerve impulses and immunity.
Amino acids are known as the building blocks of protein. Amino acids are classified as being either essential (or indispensable), meaning the body cannot adequately synthesize them and must obtain them from the diet, or non-essential (or dispensable), indicating that the body can make them.
Since protein is an essential fuel providing and storing nutrient for the body which cannot be pre-synthesized by the body and needs to be taken in only by external sources. Due to this, it is widely believed that a vegetarian diet cannot provide the required amount of protein but many scientific studies have proved that you don’t need as much protein as you think. Somehow, everyone got the idea that we need exorbitant amounts of protein, way more than is even recommended.
According to internationally acceptable standards allowance of protein is .8 grams per kilogram of body weight for an average person. It will of course vary – will be more for an athlete and a nursing mother from 1.2 up to 1.8 in extreme cases.
Protein also only contributes to about 10 percent of the total carbs in your diet, hence making it extremely attractive for all the figure conscious youth out there. So, now that we have understood the dynamics of how proteins work, let’s understand their relationship with vegetarian snacks.
Contrary to popular beliefs healthy vegetarian snacks are in fact more than enough to provide the required amount of protein in the diet. Lentils, soy foods, nuts, seeds, and grains are the primary source of protein in vegetarian snacks. The major advantage they have is that they are easily available at relatively affordable prices.
There is increasing evidence that consuming protein from plant rather than animal sources may be one of the reasons why vegetarians generally have a lower risk of overweight, obesity and chronic disease.
Hence, as discussed above, it is clear that vegetarian diets may provide less protein than a non-vegetarian diet, they are still able to meet protein requirements.