12 Complete Vegetarian Proteins

12 Complete Proteins Vegetarians Need to Know About

Other than meat, there are other ways to get complete proteins in your meals and buckwheat is one of them!

The term “complete protein” refers to amino acids, the building blocks of protein. There are 20 different amino acids that can form a protein, and 9 that the body can’t produce on its own. These are called essential amino acids—we need to eat them because we can’t make them ourselves. In order to be considered “complete,” a protein must contain all nine of these essential amino acids.

You can view the full article here, at greatist.com

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Weight Loss Advise From The 1920s

A  quick read article from Reader’s Digest about weight loss advise in the 1920’s as compared to today. It seems that some of the advise still holds true till today!  An article full of diet tips that are surprisingly forward-thinking – along with others that are woefully outdated. Here, key weight-loss lessons we can all re-learn.

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Does Cooking Affect the Glycemic Index of Foods?

pan fried eggs

The glycemic index (GI) provides a measure of how fast and how high a particular food can raise our blood glucose level. A food with a low GI usually means it causes a moderate rise in blood glucose, while foods with a high GI causes blood glucose levels to increase above favorable levels.

Fats and fibers are able to lower the GI of foods. Generally, the more cooked or processed food is, the higher the GI, but it can vary due to certain factors.

The following are a few examples:

Ripeness – Fruits and vegetable that are riper tend to have higher GI levels.
Processing – Taking whole fruits instead of juices, baked potatoes instead of mashed potatoes, both can help to prevent the GI from rising. Cooking methods – For example, how long the food is cooked. The less cooked the food is, the lower the GI.

Cooking Methods that Raises Glycemic Index
Changes in blood glucose levels after a meal are determined by the ratio of dietary carbohydrate and digestive enzymes, and the presence of other dietary factors, like fats and fibers, which are able to slow down carbohydrate digestion. Cooking methods that add heat to a grain or breaks apart a grain will increase the GI as it makes the dietary carbohydrates available for digestive enzymes.

Cooking Methods that Lower Glycemic Index
Adding fats and fibers into your diet will be able to slow down carbohydrate digestion and absorption, thus lowering GI. For instance, sautéing potatoes in olive oil will lower the GI as it adds fats and to the starchy potatoes carbohydrate. Slow-cooking methods, such as baking and steaming will result in a lower GI levels when compared against boiling and microwaving. Retaining the potato’s skin will add some fiber which then lowers the impact of the potato starch on blood glucose levels.

Taking in mind, no matter what sort of cooking methods used, some dietary carbohydrates, such as potatoes and grains, tend to have higher GI than others. The GI of any food is directly linked to your body’s ability to digest and absorb carbohydrates. These numbers will vary according to the health situations of individuals. For example, those with diabetes. It would be better to talk to your dietitian before you start planning your diet.

  1. Don’t overcook your food
  2. Choose less processed and whole foods
  3. Choose foods with high soluble fibre content (like Apples, beans and oats)

Sources:
www.diabetes.org
www.livestrong.com
www.montignac.com

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Nutrition Information for Specific Ages and Dietary Types

Active adults:

Triathletes and spinning-class addicts, take note: For optimal performance, energy, and recovery, be sure to consume a balance of whole grains, lean protein, fruits, and vegetables. Increase water intake as needed to stay hydrated. Consume a meal or snack rich in healthy carbohydrates before a workout, such as a banana. Within 60 to 90 minutes after intense exercise, aim to rebuild muscles with a meal or a light snack that includes lean protein.

Pregnant women:

Consume rich sources of iron (or take an iron supplement) in addition to foods rich in folate, such as spinach, asparagus, beans, and whole-grain cereals. Dairy intake should also be increased.

Older adults, 50+ years old:

Maintain low blood pressure, good cholesterol levels, and bone density with foods rich in calcium, iron, potassium, and vitamin B12. These nutrients help maintain low blood pressure and good cholesterol levels, as well as bone density, and can be found in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and healthy sources of unsaturated fat such as olive oil, avocado, walnuts, and wild salmon.

Vegetarians and vegans:

Consume appropriate wholesome sources of protein such as eggs, dairy, nuts, beans and legumes, quinoa, soy and hemp milk, edamame, and tofu. Aim for at least one serving of protein per meal, and consider taking a dietary supplement if iron, B12, and calcium levels are low.

Weight loss:

Reduce portion sizes and emphasize mostly raw or lightly cooked fruits and vegetables, along with healthy fats, lean proteins, and whole-grain carbohydrates. Use a smaller plate and utensils to make smaller portions feel bigger, and eat more slowly, stopping partway through the meal to assess fullness. Drink plenty of water, and eat a small meal or a snack rich in complex carbs and fiber every three to four hours to maintain a feeling of fullness.

Young children:

Ensure good nutrition and growth and development in young children with a varied diet packed with fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. Introduce kids to healthy habits early on by getting them involved with grocery shopping and cooking. Limit the consumption of processed foods, sweetened beverages, and refined sugars.

via Good Nutrition and Health Advice from a Nutritionist at Epicurious.com.

The Soba Noodles Diet

soba noodles photo by @kevinv033

Soba is the Japanese name for buckwheat.  It is a type of thin noodle made from buckwheat flour and wheat flour. Soba noodles can be eaten chilled with a dipping sauce, or in soup.  It contains high amounts of fiber, minerals and vitamins B1 and B2.

In Japan, soba is mostly referring to noodles in general and this has been a staple of the Japanese diet.

Consuming soba noodles can be an alternative for dieting. It is low in calories and high in fiber, which makes it a great choice. Being high in fiber, it keeps you feeling full longer thus helping you to stop overeating and controlling your appetite. A great food to include in your weight loss program.

Combine soba noodles with other foods like vegetables, beans and meat (e.g. salmon) to give a healthy meal with plenty of nutrients for your body!

Soba noodles can be bought from supermarkets, or if not try your local organic stores.

Buckwheat for Weight Loss

Buckwheat is a great choice for weight loss as it is rich in fibre so it makes you fill full quicker and help suppress your appetite.

Incorporating buckwheat into your diet can also help you manage your blood sugar levels, thanks to its glycemic index(GI) of 51 (this means it is low GI !). (Source: http://www.glycemicindex.com)

Keeping your blood sugar levels steady throughout the day is an important factor to your weight loss plan.  How does it work? Well, when we eat, our body converts digestible carbohydrates into blood sugar. Our blood sugar level can affect how hungry and how energetic we feel.  It also determines whether we burn fat or store it.

If you don’t know what the glycemic index (GI) is, i’ll be talking about it in my next post.

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