I believe that your body and mind is the index of what you eat! A balanced diet is what it takes to live a healthy and happy life. It is important for the body to meet all its nutritional demands so that it can perform its functions in a smooth and efficient manner. Speaking of proteins, they are the essential building blocks of each and every tissue in the body. They contain amino acids which help in building up cells and tissues of the body, in fact also your hair, nails and blood cells. We all are also aware of the contribution of proteins in the building up of muscles, which is why we see body builders and athletes consuming protein supplements and following a high protein diet in order to prepare themselves for competition. Our body requires 20 amino acids for proper functioning. While some amino acids can be produced by the body, there are some which can be fulfilled through adequate amount of protein in the diet. For people who eat protein rich foods like meat, fish, and eggs; the supply of proteins is fulfilled adequately, but what about vegetarians? How much protein does a vegetarian need, and how can they fulfill their protein needs? Keep reading to get the answers...

Protein Requirements in a Vegetarian Diet

According to the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA), the ideal amount of protein intake should be between 0.8 - 1 grams per kilogram of our weight, be it vegetarians or non-vegetarians. While it is easy for non-vegetarians to fulfill their protein intake, vegetarians generally wonder what should they do or eat, as they don't have much options. But that is incorrect. Apart from meat, fish, and eggs, there are many other vegetarian food options that can cater the needs of your daily protein effectively. There are foods like soybeans, kidney beans, almonds, tofu, brown rice, oatmeal, peanuts, whole wheat that are more than enough to give you your daily protein intake. So if you are a vegetarian and you weigh 70 kilograms, then you must consume at least 56 grams of protein in your daily diet. Mentioned below is the chart indicating the recommended values for daily protein intake of protein. Have a look.

Recommended Dietary Allowance of Protein
Age GroupValues in Grams
Kids between 1-3 years of age13
Kids between 4-8 years of age19
Kids between 9-13 years of age34
Females between 14-18 years of age46
Males between 14-18 years of age52
Females more than 19 years old46
Males more than 19 years old56

The aforementioned values of daily protein intake is recommended by the RDA, therefore, you can always get these values by eating protein rich foods. For example, having a cup of oatmeal and soy milk in the morning would give you 13 grams. For lunch, having 2 slices of whole wheat bread and 1 cup of baked beans would give you approximately 17 grams. If you want to munch on some snacks in the evening, eat some healthy crackers or munch on some almonds. And finally a dinner with some tofu or brown rice and other protein rich food like broccoli would suffice your daily need of protein.

Make sure that you eat a lot of fresh vegetables which are high in protein to get the required amount of proteins in the body. There are certain amino acids that are present in some food items that are not present in others. For example, there are certain amino acids present in rice which are not present in beans. So try to include different food items in your diet so that you get all the different types of amino acids. Take care, stay healthy, and your body and mind will reflect the same!