Protein for vegetarians? Please help!

  • Hi all,

    I started BFL yesterday & am very excited :) I need some help & suggestions.

    I am not a vegetarian anymore, but I was for years and still do not like to eat a lot of meat. The maximum amount of meat I can eat in a week is, for example, 1 pork chop and 1 chicken breast. I don't like the consistency of meat very much. I am also not a big fan of fish (will eat some tilapia and am fine with a 1/2 can of tuna but don't like to eat it for lunch at work because it makes me gassy! Why!!) :(

    As of right now I don't like cottage cheese, thanks to my grandmother forcing me to eat it as a child. I have some in my fridge that I am planning on trying but the thought of it freaks me out!

    I am definitely already struggling with getting my portion of protein into my main meals. Do any of you have any suggestions whether it's individual food items or recipes? I would greatly appreciate it.

    This is all I really have to choose from:

    Tuna (I find it hard to eat a whole can to get my full portion, though)
    All kinds of beans - but there are only so many beans I can eat in a week!
    Tofu (which I have never tried)
    Eggs (but I can't eat them early in the morning for breakfast)
    Myoplex Lite protein powder in shakes (waiting on mine to arrive, ordered online over the weekend)
    Myoplex Protein Bars
    Myoplex premade Shakes
    Nonfat plain Greek Yogurt
    Part-skim string cheese

    ...as you can see, not much to make lunch & dinner with!!

    I don't consider myself to be a very picky eater but protein has always been a challenge for me! I know I need it for sustained energy. Please help!

  • Try googling Vegetarian bodybuilders and see what and how they do it.  There are plenty of them out there and they would have answers to your questions. I am not, but I hope this helps at least a little bit.

    Tis better to look UP in the mirror to be inspired than to look DOWN at the scale and lose your desire!! - SEM

  • Not to complicate, but you want to keep in mind that cheese, although it contains some protein, isn't classified as a protein.  It's more a fat, and not really a helpful one.  Also... beans are more a carb.

    Eggs are great.  I would have a lot of eggs, if I were you.  Maybe go for a whey protein you really like, that mixes well with little water, and add a carb?  That would be less filling, which seems to be an issue.  

    Ehhh, nah on the tofu.  Save yourself the trouble.  :)

    Then have the tuna you can!  

    And make sure your carb choices are ones that have protein, so you can "sneak" it in there.  For instance, quinoa would be a good choice for you.  

    Jessica Mighty Max ~ 2013 Body-for-LIFE Champion ~ Champion is a VERB!

  • Thank you squid & Jessica :) Much appreciated.

    Ahh, I was totally counting on beans being my #1 source of protein (I always have)! :(

    and yes I totally forgot to mention quinoa - I love it!

  • Ok, so here is my food choice of the day...lol.  Grilled chicken, sauted mushrooms and spinach, with garlic and olive oil flavored quinoa.  Cook the quinoa by the directions.  While doing that get your mushrooms sauted in olive oil, add sninach(as much as you like).  Once the chicken is grilled, or use pregrilled chicken, add to your mushrooms and spinach.  Add in quinoa and blend.  Serve with a smile...haha...YUMMY!!

    Tis better to look UP in the mirror to be inspired than to look DOWN at the scale and lose your desire!! - SEM

  • Hey cbells,

    I would not count beans and quinoa as protein for this programme! They are actually mostly carbohydrate in makeup and if you look at the official list of foods they will be in the carbohydrate category! I also would not eat too many eggs as they are very very high in calories and fat. To get the protein you just need to separate the egg whites and eat them. Many of the BFL recipes use egg whites as much as possible. I like eating the official protein pancakes for breakfast, that's your protein and carbs in one go and they are delicious :)

    Also do your research on soy products like tofu, many experts advice against them as ingesting the oestrogen hormone they contain is very controversial in it's effects.... I would rather stay safe and avoid it, there are some horrific studies that came out about potential effects but I won't go into it!

  • What about steamed edamame in a salad?  I love that!  Or sometimes I add boiled shrimp as my protein to salads.

  • There is protein extracted from brown rice. It's tasteless and you can add it to anything you want to eat. Find "brown rice protein".

    I add it to plenty of things while cooking or add it to fruit shakes.

    Someone I know also told me about pea protein but I have never tried it. Stay away from soy protein. And if it's worth a try, try unflavoured whey protein.

    Try adding half a spoon of organic apple cider vinegar to your salads daily.. see if it will improve a gassy stomach because of tuna.

  • ALifeWorthLiving, the lean15 bars have soy protein isolate as the first ingredient....is that as bad as eating soy itself like say tofu? Also the lean15 protein powder has soy lecithin in it....

  • Thank you for the organic apple cider vinegar tip, ALifeWorthLiving - I will try it :)

  • Hi BFLGalina,

    According to my information, it's not a good option. Soy interfers with human hormones and several doubts are cast on how it's been grown in the past few decades which (according to some sources) make modern-day soy a completely different animal from what's been grown for thousands of years in the Far East.

    Maybe once in a while is alright, but personally I wouldn't any more.

    The nutritional profile for tofu per 100 grams is 8 grams of protein, and the high calcium (added using chemical compounds) may not be bioviable.

    . Kind regards.

  • Any time ChelseaIreland. Let us know how it went. Good luck.

  • Thanks Alifeworthliving.... I'm going to try find another protein shake, bars without soy licithin... As long as we take one EAS meal a day I think we can still enter the challenge. I think Trader Joes has some super healthy protein bars.... :) I hope EAS finds another protein source soon...even if it's more expensive!

  • There's really no such thing as a super healthy protein bar.  The bars have the crappier forms of protein, broken down for the purpose of getting them into that processed state.  They're a step up from a candy bar, but not much.  I would use them for emergency only.  

    You don't need one EAS meal per day, but rather, to use one product.  I would suggest Betagen as a great option.  

    Jessica Mighty Max ~ 2013 Body-for-LIFE Champion ~ Champion is a VERB!

  • A note on eggs.  Do have yolks!  It's not a 1:1 ratio, but remember that all the nutrients are in the yolk.  Depending on my intake of fat for that day, usually I have 2 whole eggs + 3 whites, or 1 whole + 4 whites.  

    Jessica Mighty Max ~ 2013 Body-for-LIFE Champion ~ Champion is a VERB!