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WIAW: January 15, 2014 – Protein Problem? Not Here! + Giveaway Winner

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For the most part, this is essentially pretty accurate.  As a meat-eater, I never had anyone ask me if I was “getting enough protein.”  Once I became a vegetarian (and now mostly vegan), I get concern from others regarding this topic quite frequently.  Well, guess what?  I have no problem whatsoever in eating an adequate amount of protein.  I mean let’s be honest- have you ever really heard of anyone suffering from protein deficiency (unless we are talking about extremely malnourished individuals)?  Our society is obsessed with protein and is under the misconception that the more protein we eat, the better.  We are protein obsessed.  The obsession is really unnecessary, especially since we need a lot less protein than most people think.

I have done my research, and I have found that my body needs about 45 grams of protein per day.  Do I get this?  Well, I don’t keep track of my protein intake on a daily basis, though I do occasionally add it up out of curiosity.  And every single time that I have done the calculations, I have met (and often times far exceeded) this amount.

Since so many people find interest in the protein intake of a vegan individual, I am going to share with you a typical vegan day of eats and the amount of protein that these eats contain (and for the heads up, even on days when I am not eating meat “substitutes,” I still exceed the minimum 45 grams of protein).

WIAW: January 15, 2014


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Part one of my breakfast was a green smoothie.  In the mix was unsweetened vanilla almond milk, vanilla Vega One protein powder, half of a frozen banana, frozen cranberries, frozen blueberries, and a TON of spinach!

Protein: 9 grams

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The second part of my breakfast was a batch of blueberry buckwheat pancakes topped off with peanut butter.

Protein: 15 grams


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Lunch was Tropical “Chicken” Salad* from the Better Than Vegan cookbook, which I served in hearts of Romaine lettuce leaves.

Protein: 25 grams

Afternoon Snacks

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In the afternoon I snacked on a sliced apple dipped in Nuttso nut and seed better.

Protein: 4 grams

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I also tried a new-to-me flavor of Zevia- ginger root beer.  I did not think I was much of a root beer fan, but I loved  this!

Protein: 0 (no surprise there!)


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I tried out my new Vegan Slow Cooker for Two or Just for You cookbook that I got for Christmas and made the Indian Mashed Veggie Sandwich.  I served it over a toasted whole wheat English muffin and alongside a dill pickle spear.  And yes, I realize that it is not very pretty.  But then again, most Indian food is not.

Protein: 14 grams

Evening Snacks

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Baby carrots.

Protein: 1 gram

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Some fruit for my sweet tooth!

Protein: ~1 gram

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A baked sweet potato topped with Justin’s maple almond butter.

Protein: 6 grams

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Total protein for the day: ~75 grams.  That is 30 grams more than what I “needed.”  Not too shabby, eh?  So, my friends, no need to worry here! 😉

And last but not least, the winner of the Better Than Vegan cookbook giveaway is:

Kelly G!

Kelly- please e-mail me by Sunday, January 19th  at cleaneatingveggiegirl@gmail.com with your full name and mailing address.

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  • meredith @ The Cookie ChRUNicles January 15, 2014, 5:48 am
    I agree with you on the protein thing although at certain points in the last couple of months I felt I wasn't getting enough because I was still hungry and not feeling satisfied. That's when I bumped up the protein in the form of eggs/egg whites/greek yogurt and even the occasional Quest bar. Worked like a charm! meredith @ The Cookie ChRUNicles recently posted...What I Ate Wednesday – Meatless Meatball Recipe!My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:02 pm
      Yes, we definitely have to listen to our bodies and what they are telling us since we all have individual needs!
  • Kelly @ hidden fruits and veggies January 15, 2014, 6:43 am
    In my experience, it's always people who are practically strangers that ask about protein. It seems like a weirdly personal thing to ask, because it's not like I check in on anyone's (except Josh's) fiber, vitamin C, etc intake. It's sad that everyone is so focused on meat = protein that they don't really realize the nutrition OTHER food contains.
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:03 pm
      It is craziness, isn't it? Let's change the way people think about protein! Veggies unite! :)
  • Lucie January 15, 2014, 7:08 am
    I don't get these questions anyway - I personally am not concerned by anyone's eating habits - except they are truly suffering from something. Other than that - who cares? As long as everyone feels good and vital, and loves the food - all is perfect! I totally eye these pancakes and the sweet potato with PB - Yummers!! Pancakes definitely need to happen soon!! Lucie recently posted...WIAW#47 – A Monday of eatsMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:04 pm
      LOVE that mentality! We all need to develop the "who cares?" mentality more often :).
  • Katie @ Daily Cup of Kate January 15, 2014, 7:19 am
    Ginger root beer?! Yum, I have to find that! I have had the root beer flavor and its pretty good. Katie @ Daily Cup of Kate recently posted...Guest Post: Cold Weather, Sweaty Workout: 5 tips to keep you motivated this season!My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:16 pm
      It is really tasty!! You def need to check it out!
  • Kim @ BusyBod January 15, 2014, 7:27 am
    I love this approach to disproving the protein myth. I can't even tell you how many people have told me they would go vegetarian but can't because "I need to build muscle so I need protein." We veggies get plenty of protein! Kim @ BusyBod recently posted...Eats lately {WIAW}My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:21 pm
      Yes, we get MORE than enough!! Silly people...they need to be educated!! ;)
  • Danica @ It's Progression January 15, 2014, 7:31 am
    I agree that our society is MUCH too obsessed with protein. Yes, it's an important nutrient, but we get it from so many other forms than just meat. I think it's really all an issue of education, and I love that you've shown just how much protein we can get from a diet chock full of fruits and veggies! Danica @ It's Progression recently posted...recipe suggestions? {wiaw}My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:22 pm
      Yes, education is key! I will keep "preaching" and hopefully some people benefit from it and soak it all up! :)
  • Carly @ Snack Therapy January 15, 2014, 8:01 am
    I've found that it's actually pretty easy to get enough protein (as long as you have access to food, of course). I eat a decent amount of dairy -- usually kefir or Greek yogurt for breakfast, and two pieces of light string cheese -- so I get 30+ grams right there. I also eat tons of nuts, quinoa, beans, whole grains, and meat a few times per week. That Indian Sandwich definitely isn't the prettiest thing in the world, but it still looks really really good. The ugliest things usually taste the best ;). Carly @ Snack Therapy recently posted...Everything I Stuffed Into My Face on TuesdayMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:23 pm
      SO true. Whenever I make some really ugly it is usually REALLY delicious!!
  • Elyse @ Lizzie Fit January 15, 2014, 8:13 am
    Girl, check you out! I do a random calculation every now and then to see how I'm doing to macros and, you guess it, I meet (actually exceed) my requirements every time ;) I want to scream when someone asks me about my protein intake while eating a piece of white toast or something... ahhh lol Elyse @ Lizzie Fit recently posted...#JumpstartJanuary Detox SmoothieMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:25 pm
      SO true!! I'm fairly certain my mostly plant-based diet contains WAY more nutrients/macros than a lot of meat-eating individuals' diets ;).
  • Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog January 15, 2014, 10:51 am
    I love that you shared this about protein! I couldn't agree with you more that a lot of people are obsessed with their protein intakes and most people eat too much. Our bodies need carbs, fat and protein to properly function. :) Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog recently posted...WIAW #56: Winter SalesMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:26 pm
      Yes, finding a balance between it all is key!!
  • Leslee @ Her Happy Balance January 15, 2014, 10:59 am
    Indian food is definitely delicious, but you're right it never looks too appetizing. Its very runny and clumpy usually haha. Can't beat the combination of the spices though! Leslee @ Her Happy Balance recently posted...Nesco Dehydrator and Jerky Maker ReviewMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:28 pm
      SO true. Indian food is easily the ugliest food that I ate, but definitely some of the tastiest! You can't judge a book by its cover, right? ;)
  • Deb @ Its All About Me Fitness January 15, 2014, 11:39 am
    Love me some Indian Food ~ its very tasty, but lacks photogenic qualities except for chutneys, they are super colorful! Deb @ Its All About Me Fitness recently posted...What I Ate WednesdayMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:44 pm
      Yeah, it's not very pretty...but often times the ugliest foods are the best! ;)
  • Ang @ Nutty for Life January 15, 2014, 11:50 am
    Gotta get my hands on some buckwheat! Those pancakes look amaze. The blueberries really make them pop. I love that you are proving that vegetarians/vegans can get enough protein. As long as you are conscious of what you are feeding yourself, herbivores can for sure get their protein needs! Ang @ Nutty for Life recently posted...Wednesday WisdomMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:28 pm
      They sure can!! And YES. Get yourself some buckwheat asap. I am obsessed with using it to bake EVERYTHING!
  • Alexis @ Hummusapien January 15, 2014, 12:43 pm
    Ughh I always HATED when people would ask me about protein as a plant-based eater. Whenever I discuss protein needs with clients, they're always so surprised that they don't need a big hunk of meat at every meal to satisfy their protein requirements. Good for you for eating all those yummy, protein-packed eats :) Thanks for sharing the specifics! Alexis @ Hummusapien recently posted...Simple Truth Recipe Reveal: Part IMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:31 pm
      Thanks Alexis!! I figure the more people that read about ALL of the yummy plant-based sources for protein, the better!!
  • Amanda @ .running with spoons. January 15, 2014, 12:55 pm
    I got asked that question a fair bit back when I was eating a veggie diet too… I think our society is just a little too obsessed with protein these days, especially now that the whole Paleo thing is becoming more and more popular. Different things work for different people, and at the end of the day, all that matters is that you feel happy and healthy.
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:32 pm
      Amen to that, girlie!! :) We definitely need to listen to our bodies!
  • Katie @ running4cupcakes January 15, 2014, 1:02 pm
    Great spin on WIAW post!! Also, I LOVE nut butter and apples - best snack ever!
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:34 pm
      It seriously is...mostly for the excuse to eat lots of AB! ;)
  • Ashlee@HisnHers January 15, 2014, 1:14 pm
    Ahh I hate that question! I feel like the people who actually ask are the ones who judge me for it even after I explain to them! On the other hand, general interest doesn't bother me, just the ones who aren't listening to my response anyway. :-P
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:35 pm
      Agreed!! I love when people ask me questions because they generally want to learn!
  • Becky @ Olives n Wine January 15, 2014, 3:10 pm
    I recently read something about how too much protein is bad for our kidneys - I'm nervous for what this means for the protein-obsessed! This is a great post to show how easy it is to get protein into our diets via vegetarian sources :) Becky @ Olives n Wine recently posted...Peanut Butter Berry BarsMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:36 pm
      Yes, I have read several articles regarding too much protein being a bad thing. It will be interesting to see the effects since protein is so HUGE right now :/.
  • Sam @ Better With Sprinkles January 15, 2014, 4:15 pm
    Society is definitely in a protein-obsessed phase, isn't it? While I understand the importance of protein, it is definitely overblown. As long as you feel happy and healthy with what you're eating, that's all that matters! Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted...WIAW: Back to School.My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:37 pm
      That could not be more true. We definitely need to be listening to our bodies more. They know what we need!
  • Jordan Lynn // Life Between Lattes January 15, 2014, 4:18 pm
    Oh, the vegetarian/ vegan protein question ... I have actually seen business cards that list all sources of vegan protein, which I think is awesome. I calorie counted/ tracked my diet for a few years during a time that I was predominantly vegan, and it was rare it I didn't get enough protein. Thanks helping combat that veggie/ protein misconception thing. :)
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 4:43 pm
      The more education the better, right? :) And those business cards sound awesome. I need them so that I can hand them out to the curious ;).
  • Alexandra Aimee January 15, 2014, 5:09 pm
    Those pancakes look amazing. -- Alex at Brainy Girls Beauty
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 8:27 pm
      They are delicious! If you have not tried making pancakes with buckwheat flour, you definitely need to!
  • Casey @ Salted Plates January 15, 2014, 5:35 pm
    that seems like a ton of protein, I've never been a huge protein eater but I know I get in a lot more than people think I do. Casey @ Salted Plates recently posted...Chana Saag PaneerMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 8:28 pm
      Oh I am sure that you most definitely do!
  • Nicole @ FruitnFitness January 15, 2014, 6:20 pm
    As usual all your meals look good. There is sure a lot more protein throughout the day than I would have expected. I made Indian curry lentils the other night, your right about Indian food never looking too good. Luckily it tastes good! Nicole @ FruitnFitness recently posted...WIAW – a busy day of eatsMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 15, 2014, 8:29 pm
      Protein is hiding in SO many foods! ;) And yes, that darn Indian food doesn't look good..but it TASTES good!
  • Meredith January 15, 2014, 10:27 pm
    I totally agree Hannah! Our society is so over obsessed with protein! I don't eat meat all that often so just out of curiosity I tracked my intake for 3 days and I exceeded every day too! Ps I want to make those pancakes of yours :) Meredith recently posted...All smiles…and Cake PopsMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 16, 2014, 1:50 pm
      I love hearing that SO many people understand the we don't need to be obsessed with protein! It can't be good for us...
  • Jessie January 15, 2014, 11:53 pm
    Its so funny you put this twist on WIAW bc I randomly felt the need to add up my protein intake from yesterday as well - although mine was around 67grams. Your Indian inspire dish sounds delicious. I'm not sure why, but that's one type of cuisine I'm always so hesitant about trying out in the kitchen. Jessie recently posted...Strength & How to be DependentMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 16, 2014, 1:52 pm
      Yay for getting plenty of protein! And you definitely need to give cooking Indian food a try! It is actually a lot easier than you might think :).
  • Emily @ More Than Just Dessert January 16, 2014, 6:00 pm
    Great post, Hannah! I really liked how you broke down your daily meals/foods to show how much protein each contain...very helpful! Emily @ More Than Just Dessert recently posted...Veggies— they’re not just for salads anymore!My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 17, 2014, 6:49 pm
      Thanks Emily!! I hope people found it helpful and enlightening! Have a great weekend :).
  • Amy @ The Little Honey Bee January 17, 2014, 9:47 am
    Thank you for this! I don't eat meat (I still eat fish) but this protein obsession drives me nuts... Amy @ The Little Honey Bee recently posted...Workout Clothes {Guest Post}My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 17, 2014, 6:50 pm
      I know, right? Hopefully it helped shed some light on the issue!
  • Amanda January 25, 2014, 10:26 am
    Thank you for posting this! I totally copied your idea and wanted to be sure to thank you for the inspiration! I love that e-card too - it's so true, haha :) Amanda recently posted...Getting Enough Protein as a VegetarianMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 26, 2014, 4:55 pm
      Thanks Amanda!! I am so glad that you found inspiration from this post and that you wrote one of your own!

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