here’s a “what a vegan eats in a day” post for me to point folks who are artificially concerned about my protein intake to
hello friends! before i jump into things, it’s very important that i prefix this post with a number of important disclaimers so that no one is harmed:
- this post is about food, specifically food that i have eaten today
- i am a vegan who lifts. if you’re interested in veganism and/or lifting, it is imperative that you talk to your own doctor. i do/will not offer nutrition advice, only my personal experience.
- i am not soliciting nutrition advice or critique on my macro or micro nutrients. i take advice from my doctors and not the internet, and i encourage you to follow that same rule!
ok cool! let’s start with what protein has to do with veganism.
when someone finds out i am vegan, the number one response i get is “i couldn’t LIVE without (bacon or cheese)” which likely isn’t true but i probably wasn’t even asking anyway. i’m vegan because i can be, not just because i should be - and that’s a very important distinction for me personally. food is personal and i often don’t mention my diet unless i am offered non-vegan food.
the second response is something along the lines of “well where do you get all your protein?” this isn’t an unforgivable question, it’s just that it often comes from someone who isn’t even interested in any response other than “oh my god, i totally forgot about protein! pass me that bacon!” by the way, a slice of bacon really only has a few grams of protein. if you’re new to actively thinking about protein sources, you’ll find that it’s in a lot of plant-based foods!!
protein is important, especially when trying to build muscle. there are a number of ways to figure out what your intake should be - talk to a nutritionist and/or a certified trainer to find out yours.
my current daily minimum goal is 80 grams of protein. today i hit 86g. here’s what i ate:
this morning i started with a homemade almond milk iced latte, sweetened with a little maple syrup. i ate half of a fresh dragonfruit and then i mashed up a small avocado with red pepper flakes, lime juice and cholula. this all came out to 5g of protein.
i worked out (leg and buns day) and had a rice cake with peanut butter - skippy now makes a high-protein peanut butter that’s 10g of protein a serving (normally peanut butter is 7g). i had a late brunch zoom call with some good friends, for which i made some chili flavored top ramen and added snow peas, fresh corn, mushrooms and spinach. i also had my b12 supplement with this meal (that is a micronutrient that is not really found in plant-based foods). all of this together was about 26g of protein.
after brunch i went for a walk and had another almond milk iced latte. my walk ended prematurely after a squirrel pissed on me from up in a tree. if this was the first time that happened, i’d be hyped about possibly waking up with super powers, but this is the second time that has happened.
for dinner i boiled some rainbow carrots and smothered some tempeh in cholula. tempeh is a rich source of protein; the meal was about 23g altogether.
for dessert, i made a protein shake with vegan (pea) protein powder, powdered peanut butter and almond milk. you can trust that i will not lie to you about food tasting good - for example, vegan cheese? hard pass. but this shake is really good. just as good was a glass of coke zero and these jalapeno kettle chips. altogether, this was 32g of protein.
another important thing to lifting (or being alive, in general) is water intake. as i’m writing this, i finished my 96th ounce of water which is my average daily intake but i’d like to bump that up to a gallon (128 oz). but if i don’t soon, that’s totally okay! the most important thing for me about water and food is that i enjoy myself when i consume it.
i’m very fortunate that veganism has introduced me to fun, delicious foods and recipes i’ve never eaten before. and a cool thing is that plant-based foods are not solely for plant-based diets - you can have some bacon with that mashed avocado if you must.