You Can't Grow Muscles on Plants!!

How many times have you heard that you need protein from animals to gain muscle mass?

Contrary to myth, it is possible to gain muscle on a plant based diet!

Protein consists of 9 essential amino acids, and a complete protein is considered to have adequate proportions of each of these. All animal and fish proteins are complete proteins, as is dairy and egg so if your vegetarian these are great sources of complete protein.

If you are vegan and eat only plant based proteins you need to pay closer attention to the types of protein you consume. It is possible to get enough protein from plants but as most plant based foods are incomplete proteins, they do not contain all 9 essential amino acids that your body needs. This is not bad, it is still possible to get all essential amino acids, you just need to eat a variety of protein sources each day.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and your body needs them to build and maintain the tissues in your body. When you eat anything containing protein your digestive system breaks it down into amino acids which are then absorbed into your blood stream. from there the amino acids are used to build the proteins that make up your muscles, organs and other tissues.

Not all amino acids are essential, and your body can make many from leftover amino acids found within the body but there are some that the body can't manufacture and these are called essential amino acids because you have to consume them.

The essential Amino Acids are Histidine, Isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, Threonine, Tryptophan, Valine.

Animal proteins contain every single one of these essential amino acids and are so called complete proteins. If you are vegetarian you can get complete proteins when you eat eggs or dairy products.

Plant based proteins are a little different. Each plant has a different amino acid profile. For example grains are extremely low in lysine, legumes are not good sources of tryptophan and methionine but those are found in grains and cereals. As Long as you eat some grains and some legumes you'll get all amino acids.

As long as you eat a variety of proteins throughout the day you'll get enough of each amino acid.

Soy is one plant based protein that contains all essential amino acids. Quinoa, hempseed and chai are also complete protein sources so adding these to your foods and combining with other protein sources will ensure you get all your essential amino acids required for building muscle!

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