Since becoming vegan, I have encountered similar statements and questions from many non-vegans. I often get asked, "Where do you get your protein?" On several occasions I have been told, "You need meat in your diet."
Well, actually that is very untrue! There are many sources of vitamins, minerals, iron, protein, and much, much more in a plant base diet. In this post, I will break down one of my steamed veggie plates. The nutritional content is phenomenal!
Black Beans. Black beans are a staple in many of my meals. From burritos to quesadillas, they are nutritious, inexpensive, and very versatile. They are a great source of protein, fiber, and antioxidants. Studies show that consuming black beans aids in preventing weight gain, heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. A serving of one cup contains 15 grams of protein!
Sweet Potatoes. Sweet potatoes are another nutritional powerhouse with amazing benefits. They are fat-free, high in vitamin A, and high in carotenoids. One large sweet potato contains more than 100 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin A. Vitamin A helps maintain healthy vision, healthy skin, and also boosts the immune system. Carotenoids are the phytochemicals in brightly colored fruits and vegetables. They aid in disease prevention including several types of cancers.
Kale. Kale is a nutrient-packed superfood with a long list of health benefits. Adding kale to your diets aids in everything from healthy digestion, strong bones, lowering cholesterol, and reducing heart disease. Just one cup contains over the daily recommend allowance of vitamins A and C and almost 10 percent of the daily recommended allowances of iron and calcium.
Broccoli. Broccoli can be used in many ways. It can be steamed, eaten raw, used as a topping for pizza-the possibilities are endless. Broccoli is a great source of fiber and vitamin D. Studies show that broccoli contains cancer fighting components and also aids the body in the detoxification process. It is also an excellent source of protein.
Brown Rice. Brown rice has great health benefits. It's high in fiber, and selenium. Selenium is a trace mineral that has been proven to drastically reduce the risk of colon cancer. Brown rice also contains plant lignans that aid in preventing hear disease. It contains magnesium and has been shown in studies to be helpful for lowering high blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Incorporate some of these into your weekly meal plan, and you will begin to see amazing results. I know I did!
About Tabatha James
Tabatha James is a wife, mom, and children's book author navigating her way through a vegan way of life!