Protein is a vital nutrient for the human body, playing an important role in the development of muscle mass and helping to support a healthy immune system. But did you know that not all proteins are created equal? In order to get the most out of your dietary protein, you should be aware of complementary proteins and how they work together to provide your body with all of the essential amino acids it needs.
What Are Complementary Proteins?
Complementary proteins are two or more plant-based foods that contain all nine essential amino acids. Together, these foods provide a full spectrum of nutrients that are necessary for muscle growth and proper cellular functioning. Examples of complementary proteins include beans and rice, peanut butter and whole grain bread, hummus and pita bread, soy milk and cereal, quinoa with black beans, and lentils with brown rice.
Why You Should Incorporate Complementary Proteins Into Your Diet
Incorporating complementary proteins into our diets is important because it helps us get complete nutrition from our food. Plant-based foods do not contain all nine essential amino acids on their own; however, when paired together properly, they can provide our bodies with everything we need. Combining complementary proteins also helps to create meals that are high in fiber, low in fat, and rich in vitamins and minerals—all while providing us with a balanced source of energy throughout the day.
Another benefit of consuming complementary proteins is that it allows us to eat more plant-based meals without having to worry about getting enough protein. Eating vegetarian or vegan does not mean sacrificing protein—all it takes is a bit of meal planning! By incorporating more plant-based foods into your diet such as legumes, nuts/seeds, grains like quinoa or whole wheat pasta, fruits/vegetables, dairy alternatives (soy milk), tofu/tempeh/seitan – you can easily create delicious meals packed with complete protein sources.
Overall, understanding what complementary proteins are can help you make better dietary choices for your health and well-being. Whether you’re looking for more sustainable ways to meet your daily protein goals or if you’re trying to incorporate more plant-based meals into your diet – knowing how to pair complementary proteins together is key! With just a bit of knowledge around nutrition basics – anyone can become an expert at creating delicious yet nutritious meals filled with complete protein sources!