Going vegetarian? Find other sources of protein
Contributed by VeggieGirl
It's a scenario all too familiar to Bobbie Saccone, a dietitian with
the Indiana University Health Center in Bloomington. A student decides
to become vegetarian, stops eating meat, and replaces that meat with
lots of cheese.
But one doesn't have to adopt the diet of a mouse to be a vegetarian,
Saccone counsels. She offers useful tips on replacing protein not just
for someone on a student cafeteria line, but for anyone considering
giving up meat.
In general, Americans eat too much protein. The recommended daily
intake for protein is only 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. Some
people may consume as much as twice that, Saccone says.
"We don't need as much protein from pure sources as we think we do."
Generally, Saccone advises vegetarians eat about 51/2-ounce
equivalents of protein a day.
Nuts, soy, beans and tempeh can also help compensate for the lack of meat.
"The trouble you run into is when you get an extremely picky
vegetarian. By incorporating as many different things into your diet
as possible, you can really achieve the best of all possible worlds."
Call Star reporter Shari Rudavsky at (317) 444-6354.
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Approved by andyba on December 11,2008 | 15:07:47