In order to build a more muscular physique, in addition to some intense workout, you will need to eat a lot. This requires a lot of protein, which most bodybuilders get from animal derived products like meat, milk and eggs. But what if you’re a vegan? Can you still be a bodybuilder? Can you attain that well sculpted build?
In a word, YES. Protein is found in many sources, beyond meat, and there’s no rule stating yours must come from chicken, beef or pork. You can get protein from many vegetables, grains, legumes,fruits, nuts and seeds. You just have to study up on the vegan bodybuilder lifestyle and do what they do. So what do vegan bodybuilders eat, and how do they achieve such stunning physiques without animal products? Remember others have done it and you can too, you just need a little know how.
Vegetarians and vegans are not the same!
It’s commonly misconceived that vegans and vegetarians are one and the same thing. This is simply not true. Vegetarians do not eat meat, although pesco-vegetarians do eat fish, but will eat animal derived products (that are not from killing the animal) such milk, cheese and cream. Vegans on the other hand avoid animal and animal derived products altogether. Sub groups within vegetarianism and veganism also exist , such as lacto-vegetarians, but that’s a topic for another day.
Many meat eaters, when they think of a vegan, conjure up an image of a 98 pound weakling taking another face full of sand on the beach. Vegan bodybuilders are quickly correcting this view.Just because their diets exclude all animal products (including meat, milk, and dairy derivatives), it doesn’t mean they cannot source what they need elsewhere. Vegan bodybuilders get all the proteins, carbs, fats and nutrients they need from a host of vegan friendly foods, here is our ‘Best Foods To Eat As A Vegan Bodybuilder’
“Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet” – Albert Einstein
Best Sources of Vegan Protein
Protein as we all know is the foundation of bodybuilding. Without protein, you might just as well not start the intensive exercise needed to build a hulk like physique. Your muscles will not have the tools they need to repair or recover, and you will only get frustrated with the results. Here are some of the best protein packed vegan friendly foods out there.
Soy Beans and Soy Products
Soy bean is arguably the king of all protein for vegans, just 100 grams packs a whopping 36 grams. Whats more it can be consumed in more ways than one, your only hindered by your imagination!
When you are looking to add protein the vegan way, lentils are a must. These legumes are both protein packed and delicious! They are a favourite for many and hold 9 grams of protein per 100 grams, plus twice that much in fibre.
Tofu has been viewed over the years as a boring vegan source of protein. Now, due to the awareness campaigns about vegan foods, it has been converted to an all-day any day meal. From breakfast, to entrees and to desserts also. The allure of this protein packed meal is that you can flavor it to your liking, it adds a chewy texture to your food and packs 10 grams of protein in every 100 grams.
These are one of the healthiest beans of all types of beans and legumes. Apart from that, they are rich also rich in antioxidants and contain less starch than many other beans. These delicious beans contain 21 grams of protein every 100 grams. One popular way to enjoy these beans is making black bean burritos.
Thus is one of the best gluten free vegan sources of protein. Although its size is small, it packs 3.8 grams of protein in just 100 grams. This pseudo-grain is also a good source of B vitamins, magnesium and iron. Besides that, the seeds are rich in fiber too which is good for you.
Now you know some great sources of protein to repair your muscles, you may be interested in reading out article on healthy fats and snacks for vegan bodybuilders. Don’t forget you will need to eat a calorie surplus to build muscles, find out what else you need to succeed in our article the 3 core principles of bodybuilding.