Proteins are probably the most important class of biochemical molecules essential for life. They are the foundation of human tissue. Most developed nation diets are protein deficient (with excess caloric intake). Many protein supplements on the market today are either not high nio-available quality or, when taken alone, are not giving your body what it truly needs to extend health let alone reverse symptoms of aging.
For daily minimal required protein intake based on body weight and a more detailed discussion on the differing protein sources and why your selections of how to get protein matter greatly [CLICK HERE].
Protein is a macronutrient. It is comprised of a family of amino acid molecules grouped together in various combinations to make proteins. Protein is just a catch-all term we use. That is why protein supplements often show their amino acid profiles since every amino acid has a different purpose and function.
(NOTE: Taking a limited array of amino acids or eating a small range of foods in your diet likely will not provide what your body needs to synthesize health promoting compounds … there are many co-factors impacting bio-availability and processing of nutrients into what the body needs for optimal health).
Amino acids are believed to work best in combination, although transport competition may occur if targeting a very specific affect. We generally recommend taking protein supplements with other raw food concentrate arrays – our advanced raw superfood meal replacement products (particularly our “KISS” special) combines multiple protein sources (with all amino acids) with a wide array of nutrient dense plants, other cleansing botanicals, anti-oxidants, digestive enzymes and preniotic and probiotic supports.
While vegetarians who are skilled at eating sufficient plant based amino acids will not experience serious protein deficiencies (although most do and would be well advised to regularly supplement their diets with one or more of our Meal Replacement Superfood Concentrates), we still believe select fish and animal meat consumption can add health benefits not available from other sources. The reasons include caloric efficiency, blood sugar management, and human biology. For example it takes more calories to get adequate amounts of protein on a vegetarian diet. Living on beans and tofu increases the amount of carbohydrates in one’s diet significantly. And the human body has evolved over long periods of time with fish and meat sources.
If you keep up on the raw food movement, you may have heard that some of its most respected leaders, vegan for 10+ years, are now starting to supplement their diets with animal based protein. Many leading naturopathic doctors, some of the most advanced nutrition experts the world has ever known, have also abandoned vegan and vegetarian protocols to incorporate animal sourced proteins in their diets.
While the trends suggests otherwise due to evolutionary factors, we hope research and food technology advancements some day light a path to optimal health maintenance without animal or fish consumption, aligning respect and compassion for all living things with maximal life extension and disease prevention.
TOP PROTEIN SOURCES
Please comment at the end of this post if you have superior knowledge to share for others trying to learn more about optimizing their protein intake.
- Wild Game and Grass-Fed Beef
Animals raised on cheap grain are not healthy … in fact their diet would quickly kill them from disease and malnourishment if they were not first slaughtered for your consumption.
Grass-fed, organic beef won’t make the vegetarians happy, but this beef is rich in beneficial fatty acids that are missing from the factory-raised cattle. It’s cleaner, healthier, more flavorful, and richer in nutrients. And grass-fed beef is typically raised in humane conditions. If you eat beef, grass-fed is a must. It’s getting quite easy to find these days. You may in fact be able to order, and jerky made from it, through this community.
- Organic Chicken
Chicken raised properly is rich in EFAs and is one of the most efficient, lean sources of protein available. Eggs are even better and more humane to consume.
- Wild Salmon or Other Wild Fish
Farmed salmon is produced in a way that’s the seaside equivalent of a chicken factory. The fish are often sick and infected. They’re fed cheap feed that does not yield the desirable Omega-3-rich flesh.
- Organic Free Range Eggs
Eggs are rich in antioxidants, good fats, vitamins, and – for the calories – a lot of protein. They may be the most perfect animal protein structure available for humans and if from free range chickens most humanitarian concerns are addressed. Cooked eggs are not remotely equivalent nutritionally to raw eggs. Things like Egg Beaters are the result of food manufacturers exploiting fears based on grossly inaccurate health information. There’s nothing healthy about such unnatural products. Adding an egg in the morning to your meal replacement “KISS” superfood is a great way to start the day.
- Quinoa – Spirulina – Hemp – Brown Rice and other super plants
Quinoa, spirulina and hemp are 40% or more protein by weight (spirulina in fact is 60% and contains all essential amino acids), have essential fatty acids and a wide array of other nutrients and vitamins. Brown rice is an excellent plant protein source as well. Pea proteins are popular as well. Soy protein, a vegan and vegetarian staple, is falling from favor.
Beans come in 1000 varieties and are nutritionally neck to neck according to some with animal protein sources. They are also near zero in sodium, fat and cholesterol.
- Plain Organic Yogurt and Plain Kefir
European yogurt is richer, fattier, more nutritious and lower in sugar than most american counterparts. Avoid processed products high in chemicals, hormones, bad fats, and sugars. Kefir is even higher in valuable probiotics and with protein.
Fermented foods ought to be part of everyone’s diet, vegetarian or not. Tempeh is one that is chewy and delicious, even to die-hard burger fans. It’s healthy and a much better bet than heavily processed tofu or “mock meats” that are brimming with poor-quality modified proteins, sodium, chemicals and starchy fillers.
When adding nuts to meals for protein, consider almonds. Soaking almonds increases bio-availability of its protein and other nutrients.
- Dairy Products
Milk, cheese and yogurts and other dairy derivatives are popular protein sources. Increased awareness of dairy allergies is decreasing use of dairy products as protein sources. Increasing concern about the nutrient value of pasteurized milk and cheeses is also decreasing demand for these products. Raw milk is not readily available but many studies indicate raw milk may be an excellent protein source.
- Whey Protein Supplements
The rage of the athlete and body building communities, whey protein supplements are by far the best selling protein products. Whey is dairy derived. Whey is also the most common protein source in protein bars and protein drinks, 2 of the fastest growing areas of the functional food market. The problem with most whey products is they are not of high quality, more people than known have some dairy allergy issue, and whey that is not from grass fed cows and processed correctly to maintain bio-availability is not all that helpful.
- Goat Milk Based Protein
Goat milk, cheeses and protein products are gaining interest due to evidence goat’s milk has twice the protein per ounce as cow’s milk, minimal allergy concerns, and may be more bio-available to human digestive systems.
So What’s YOUR favorite protein source?
Leave a comment.