Is Halo Top Ice Cream Actually Healthy?

I can confirm that Halo Top ice cream does indeed taste amazing.

After hearing hype for months about this low-calorie, high-protein “healthy” ice cream, I finally caved and bought a pint of their Black Cherry. I devoured it in minutes and was amazed at how much it tasted like traditional ice cream. If I went to a scoop shoppe and someone served me a bowl of Halo Top, I wouldn’t think twice. I would think it was some pretty great ice cream.

But there’s a common saying in the nutrition world—if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. Just because a product’s low in calories doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthy. Heck, zero-calorie diet soda has its own set of issues. So, is Halo Top ice cream actually healthy? Here’s your answer.

Getting The Facts Straight

Halo Top Ice Cream
Photo via Halo Top’s official Facebook page

Before we dive into the ingredients in Halo Top, let’s discuss its nutrition facts.

In short, they’re spectacular—at least compared to the nutrition facts for traditional ice cream. Halo Top is currently available in 17 flavors. Each flavor falls in the range of 240-360 calories per pint. Let’s focus on the chocolate variety, since it’s fairly simple.

One pint of chocolate Halo Top ice cream contains:

280 calories, 10 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 160 mg of cholesterol, 440 mg of sodium, 48 grams of carbohydrate, 8 grams of fiber, 20 grams of sugar, 20 grams of protein, 40% DV calcium, 16% DV iron.

Now, let’s compare that to one the most popular traditional ice cream brands in the world—Häagen-Dazs. The nutrition facts for one pint of chocolate Häagen-Dazs ice cream:

1,040 calories, 68 grams of fat, 40 grams of saturated fat, 360 mg of cholesterol, 180 mg of sodium, 88 grams of carbohydrate, 4 grams of fiber, 76 grams of sugar, 20 grams of protein, 32% DV calcium, 32% DV iron.

There’s really no contest—Halo Top blows traditional ice cream out of the water in almost every important nutritional category (especially for those concerned with weight management). The calories, fat, saturated fat and sugar totals for Halo Top are a fraction of what’s inside traditional ice cream. Halo Top does this while being just as high in fiber and protein as the traditional brands (if not more so). It’s still ice cream, so it can’t replace veggies, fruit, whole grains, etc. in your diet. But you’ll be hard-pressed to find a delicious dessert with more impressive nutrition facts than Halo Top.

The next question is how the heck do they do it?

Ingenious Ingredients

Ice Cream
One reason Halo Top is able to keep their calorie count and sugar totals so low is because, unlike traditional ice cream manufacturers, they actually use a trio of sweeteners in their product.

The most prominent is erythritol, an all-natural sugar alcohol that looks and tastes like sugar yet contains just 0.24 calories per gram. The second most prominent is organic cane sugar—which is basically a fancy way of saying plain ol’ sugar. Sugar contains 4 calories per gram. A pint of Halo Top contains 20 grams of sugar, so 80 of those calories can be directly attributed to its sugar content. The third sweetener is stevia, a plant native to Paraguay that’s long been used as a low-calorie natural sweetener. It contains no calories and is roughly 250 to 300 times the sweetness of sugar.

Let’s crunch the cumulative calorie numbers for these sweeteners:

  • Stevia contains no…

Good-for-you chocolate chip recipes for National Chocolate Chip Day

May 15 is National Chocolate Chip Day (There’s also a National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day on Aug. 4, if you’re keeping track of such things), so we figured that was as good a reason as any to spotlight a few of the healthier chocolate cookie choices on shelves.

Not surprisingly, that’s much easier said than done.

It’s pretty much impossible to find a truly healthy cookie on store shelves – real cookies – not protein bars flavored or shaped like cookies. We’re not saying they’re not out there; they’re not in the many New Orleans grocery stores that we visited.

Plenty are marketed-as-better-for-you chocolate chip cookies, however, but each has its drawbacks:

The seemingly diabetes-friendly Murray’s Sugar-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies are still essentially just white flour and artificial sweeteners (acesulfame potassium and sucralose) – and cookie-for-cookie, they’re about the same calories and carbs as a Chips Ahoy cookie, which has 160 calories and 22g carbs for three cookies.

Vegan chocolate chip cookies may look promising, like those by the Alternative Baking Company, but feature white flour, sugar and a host of other not-exactly-nutritious-yet-still-vegan ingredients, such as potato starch, salt and an oil blend. And the stats for each are staggering: 460 calories and 34 grams of sugar in a single cookie.

Another vegan cookie showing up more often on stores shelves is Lenny and Larry’s Complete Cookie with “baked nutrition” (whatever that means). Labeled as non-GMO with no dairy, no soy and no egg, each vegan cookie crams in 360 calories and 28 grams of added sugar. With more than a day’s worth of sugar, these aren’t much better than the Alternative Baking Company.

I was hopeful when I saw Munk Pack’s Gluten-Free Protein Cookie (available online), as it has more protein (9 grams) than sugar (8 grams). Problem is, each cookie is two servings – which translates to 16 grams of sugar (and 380 calories) for a single cookie. But of the brands and stats I’ve seen so far, this is among the better of the options. They’re individually packaged, too, which helps with portion control.

Build a better (for you) mac and cheese

A step-by-step guide to build a better mac and cheese, plus 3 nutritious pre-packaged options and 3 good-for-you recipes

I’ve run across two store-bought chocolate chip cookies that are a little better in terms of carbs, calories and sugar: Aunt Gussie’s Sugar Free Chocolate Chip Cookies and Emmy’s Organic’s Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies, both at natural foods stores, such as Whole Foods Market.

Aunt Gussie’s Sugar Free Chocolate Chip Cookies are made with a blend of refined and whole grain spelt flour (spelt is a gluten-containing grain that can be easier for some people to digest, compared to traditional wheat), with no sugar added. Sweetened with maltitol, each crispy cookie has just 60 calories, 0 sugar, and 5.5 grams of net carbs.

Emmy’s Organic’s Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies are more like cookie dough than baked cookies – and you’ve got to like coconut. Gluten free and vegan, these grain-free “cookies” are made with coconut, agave, chocolate chips, almond flour, and coconut oil. Each cookie bite has 100 calories, 8 grams of carbs and 6 grams of sugar. Our informal group of taste testers agreed that they could do the trick to satisfy a hankering for a chocolate chip cookie.

5 ways to build a better, healthier Eggs Benedict

Five easy ways to build a better-for-you Eggs Benedict, plus a recipe for the delicious and nutritious Smoked Salmon Benedict from The Ruby Slipper.

We couldn’t find just what we were looking for on shelves, so we tested out a batch of recipes, and narrowed it down to the three below so we could build a better chocolate chip cookie ourselves.

All are made with little or no added sugar and fiber-rich whole grains, flours or legumes; all three are gluten-free, and one is vegan….

15 of the World’s Healthiest Foods (That You’ve Never Heard Of)

When you type “world’s healthiest foods to eat” into Google, results range from blueberries to eggs to broccoli. You’ve been eating these same foods your whole life, and you’d probably eat more of them if all those recipes didn’t start to all taste the same. Where’s the variety? Are there foods with healthy fats besides avocados and nuts? Are there antioxidant-rich foods besides blueberries?

Chances are, you’ve only just begun to discover the variety of nutritious foods the world has to offer. You don’t have to keep eating the same boring foods to be healthy. It’s time to add more flavors — and health benefits — to your diet. These are some of the world’s healthiest foods you’ve probably never heard of. Start making your grocery list ASAP.

1. Mung beans

Mung beans poured from the sack
Mung beans promote a healthy heart. | iStock.com/aireowrt

Fish and avocados aren’t the only heart-healthy foods out there. Foods high in protein and fiber are also good for your heart. And plant-based foods like mung beans often have natural anti-inflammatory properties. This is likely due to the high fiber content, as this form of carbohydrate promotes slow digestion and discourages you from eating foods that might further irritate your gastrointestinal system. Use mung beans to create homemade falafel, a bean-based salad, or put a unique spin on traditional hummus.

2. Fenugreek

Fenugreek seeds or Fenugreek is Kasuri Methiis
Fenugreek’s taste is on the bitter side. | iStock.com/Manu_Bahuguna

Need a pinch of bitter spice in your life? Fenugreek is used as both an herb and as a legume. Today it’s most commonly used in European and South Asian dishes for curries and teas, and 100 grams of fenugreek yields about 323 calories, 6 grams of fat, 23 grams of protein, and 25 grams of fiber, making it a heart-healthy addition to any dish.

Foods native to the Mediterranean, including this one, are among the healthiest you can eat. The Mediterranean Diet has the power to decrease your risk of dying from heart disease and other related conditions, so eating foods that fit in with these recommendations — healthy fats, plus plenty of fiber — just makes sense. Add fenugreek to a spicy stew, or use it as a powder in your favorite homemade curry dish.

3. Yacon

whole organic Yacon roots
Yacon is filled with fiber and complex sugar compounds that promote healthy digestion. | iStock.com/PicturePartners

Turnips, carrots, and potatoes aren’t the only vegetables that grow underground. The most unfamiliar is probably the yacon. It looks like a potato, but is full of complex sugar compounds that promote slow digestion and may help regulate blood sugar, blood pressure, and your liver due to its high fiber content.

This vegetable grows underground like a potato, but tastes slightly sweet (different than a sweet potato, though). You can cook yacon and incorporate it into other recipes or eat it raw. Yacon powder and syrup are also often used as healthy alternative sweeteners (not the synthetic artificial sweeteners you’re thinking of) especially for controlling blood sugar. Make it a substitute for extra sugar in baking for a sweet treat that doesn’t go overboard.

4. Arame

Wakame salad
If you love Japanese food then you are no stranger to arame. | iStock.com/tbralnina

If you’re at all familiar with Japanese cuisine, arame isn’t a complete stranger to you. You’ve most likely seen it on a mixed salad or used as a garnish. Though it looks inedible, arame — long brown seaweed-like strands — have a sweet taste and plenty of nutritional benefits. A 50-gram serving will give you about half of your daily calcium intake and a quarter of your daily recommended iron intake. Since the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences says iron is lost daily as your body gets rid of waste, consider adding arame to rice or a stir-fry diet to prevent iron deficiency.

5. Goldenberries

Dried organic golden berries
You can eat goldenberries raw or cooked. | iStock.com/bjphotographs

Goldenberries, also called peruvian ground cherries, aren’t easy to find fresh in the U.S., but their health benefits are worth the effort. These berries are native to South America, where they are harvested, dried, packaged, and sold. According to Livestrong, goldenberries contain 80 calories per ounce, and they have zero fat, 3 grams of fiber, and plenty of antioxidants.

These berries taste a little sweet and sour, and you can eat them raw or add them to any recipe that calls for fruit. Bake them into a pie or a pancake, put them in your yogurt — you could even try adding them to a smoothie.

6. Teff

teff seeds
You can use teff on basically anything you can think of. | iStock.com/PicturePartners

Native to Ethiopia, teff is a versatile grain with a variety of health benefits. One cup of teff yields 255 calories, 50 grams of carbohydrates, less than 2 grams of total fat, and about 10 grams…

The Top 19 Best Sources of Plant Protein—And Why You Should Be Eating Them

Hey, we love a good burger or salmon dinner as much as anyone–but swapping in vegetarian proteins a few times a week can rack up the benefits to the planet and your body, plus, it ensures you’ll never get stuck in a sushi rut. Here are seven reasons for eating plant proteins, plus 19 of the best sources.

SURPRISING BENEFITS OF EATING PLANT PROTEINS

They Improve Metabolism and Longevity

According to research at Harvard University, people who eat plant protein have improved metabolism, decreased risk of obesity, and greater longevity. Each 3 percent increase in calories from plant protein was associated with a 10 percent lower risk of death.

They Can Mitigate Damaging Effects From Unhealthy Habits

That same study showed that the diet’s positive effects still persisted despite habits like smoking or having one too many glasses of vino. Of course, we’re not endorsing a drinking binge, but eating more plant protein can help if you do let loose from time to time.

They Have No Harmful Chemicals

Added nitrates and nitrites in processed meats are part of what makes them unhealthy (though nitrates occur naturally in some fruit, vegetables and grains, but they are not harmful). By choosing organic plant proteins, you avoid these chemicals, researchers explained. Also, a diet heavy in processed meat can cause inflammation, increasing the risk of disease.

They Are Nutrient and Fiber Rich

Pulses and legumes, such as lentils, chickpeas, dried beans, and soybeans, are rich in fiber, Maggie Moon, RDN, author of The MIND Diet, tells Clean Plates. A daily fiber goal is 25-30g per day, she says, and eating plenty of fiber from plant-based proteins will “reduce constipation and keep the digestive tract regular, due to its gut-promoting qualities.” Dietary fiber is not naturally found in animal protein, so this gives plant protein a huge leg up.

Plus, pulses and legumes are “also high in iron, zinc, B vitamins like folate, minerals such as magnesium, potassium and phosphorous, and they are naturally cholesterol- and gluten-free,” Moon explains. Plant proteins are a lower-calorie, nutritious option, and they can improve your digestive health by “fueling the good bacteria in your microbiome,” she adds.

They Fill You Up

All of that fiber easily fills you up and helps keep blood sugar levels stable,…

Molecule link to diabetic kidney disease

Kidneys

Edinburgh scientists have identified a key molecule linked to kidney disease in people with diabetes.

Blocking the protein prevents kidney damage associated with diabetes in rats and mice, the study also found.

Edinburgh University scientists said the findings could lead to new therapies.

Diabetes results in high levels of blood sugar and affects 415 million people globally. It is the leading cause of kidney failure.

About 40% of people with diabetes eventually develop kidney disease.

The protein, called P2X7R, plays an important role in inflammation and the immune system and has previously been linked to kidney diseases not associated with diabetes.

This is the first time it has been shown to cause diabetic kidney disease.

Significant advance

The researchers found high P2X7R levels in kidney biopsies from people with diabetes, while it was almost undetectable in biopsies from people without diabetes.

Higher P2X7R was linked to poor kidney function and increased tissue scarring.

In follow-up experiments,…

Constipation Is A Big Indicator That Diet Is Wrong For Diabetics

constipation diabetes

Constipation is a major complaint from diabetics, which is easily remedied by understanding the negative effects of the high protein, low carbohydrate diet on digestion that is recommended by medical practitioners to control the disease.

According to the American Diabetes Association, more than 29.1 million Americans are living with diabetes, which remains the seventh leading cause of death since 2010. While not all forms of diabetes are preventable — type 1 diabetes is likely viral — both type 1 and type 2 can be prevented with diet and exercise, but in advanced cases, is currently treated with medications.

The standard diet recommendation for diabetics is a high protein, low carb diet, however, chronic constipation is a frequent complaint reported by this group, which leads to more medicating, instead of dealing with the root cause — the recommended low carb diet. A change in diet is one of the best laxatives for diabetics.

Diabetic Constipation Is Not “A Thing”

Constipation is very common, as approximately 63 million people in North America experience chronic constipation annually according to a study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

Whether you‘re diabetic or not, if you aren’t eating properly your body lets you know about it. Constipation is simply a warning sign, or symptom, that diet is not correct. This is because constipation is a digestive issue with the same cause in diabetics as non-diabetics. Constipation is a diet-related issue caused by improper eating, where chronic constipations, such as IBS with constipation, result in inflammation caused by food sensitivities and intolerances. So, to say diabetics are the only group that experiences constipation is not entirely accurate however, why diabetics struggle with constipation does deserve a simple and easily understood explanation.

Constipation is Ruinous to Gut Health

Any backup in the gut can present serious and long-term health problems to diabetics and non-diabetics alike, since gut health is essential to overall health. Movement in the gut is particularly important which is why eating high amounts of fiber has been likely recommended by your doctor. Unfortunately for many diabetics this translates to eating FiberOne bars for example, or cereals and bran muffins, which is processed and binding, instead of the correct form of fiber, which involves eating more plant-based foods like http://www.emaxhealth.com/13638/12-foods-reverse-type-2-diabetes-and-do-not-spike-blood-sugar fruit and vegetables.

According to the best selling diet/health/nutrition book EAT! – Empower. Adjust. Triumph!: Lose Ridiculous Weight, “Diet is an important factor in shaping the gut’s ecosystem. There are ten times more bacterial cells in your body than there are human cells. As humans, we are made mostly of bacteria and it’s that bacteria that produces chemicals that help us harness energy and nutrients from our food.”

Foods that are processed, and even those that contain so-called high fiber, can create a slowing of movement in the digestive tract. When foods like these are coupled with a high protein diet, the result is a backup in the gut. Backup in the gut occurs when food stops or moves slowly through the intestinal tract and putrefies causing poisonous ammonia gas to leak out from the intestines and into the bloodstream. This toxic overtake is known as intestinal permeability, and it’s damaging to how your body assimilates nutrients, as well as your overall health and in the long term, your weight.

Not surprisingly, changes in gut microbiota are associated with increasing obesity according to the journal Science. A study was conducted on fat mice whose gut flora was weakened by antibiotics. Their gut bacteria (flora) were injected into the skinny mice and the skinny mice began gaining weight, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that gut health determines the rate at which we lose or gain weight. This gut health/weight gain connection…

Are non-dairy milks as good for you as they sound?

Milk does a body good. So goes the old, familiar ad slogan for cow’s milk, which your parents have told you for years builds strong bones and teeth and boosts your energy.

But what about all the non-dairy milks (or “mylks” if you will), that keep gaining in popularity and shelf space? Ranging from almond- to quinoa-based, from horchata- to chocolate-flavored, they’re welcome options for anyone who can’t or won’t drink dairy and supposedly chock full of nutrients. (They’re also a source of controversy over what we should call them. Not “milk,” insist some lawmakers and the dairy industry.)

Are these alt-milks all they’re cracked up to be? How do they stack up against their dairy equivalent? If you’re not making your own, what should you look for when choosing between cartons? We talked to two nutrition experts to sort it out.

What good is milk, anyway?

One 8-ounce cup of lowfat milk has 102 calories, 2 grams fat, 8 grams of protein, and 13 grams of sugars (naturally occurring, not added).

Among other essential nutrients, milk provides nearly a third of the calcium and Vitamin D we should be—but often fall short of—consuming on a daily basis.

Fortified, but with what?

Many non-dairy milks have as much or more calcium than cow’s milk, which is good, and they’re typically fortified with other vitamins and minerals, which is good in theory.

“The problem is, they often don’t use the best-quality supplements or it’s not enough or not the right form of it,” says registered dietitian Sonya Angelone, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Take Vitamin D. Vitamin D2 is the form used in most non-dairy milk—you’ll see it on the ingredients list on the carton—but it’s less effective than Vitamin D3, the active form in our bodies that’s also present in dairy, says Angelone.

Some vitamins have a synergistic relationship with other vitamins that might not be in the fortification mix. There’s even such a thing as too much calcium. “Higher [calcium] is not necessarily a good thing because the more you get of it at once, the less you absorb,” says Angelone.

The takeaway? Make sure what you’re buying is indeed fortified, but keep in mind that no milk, plant-based or otherwise, will provide all the nutrients you need.

Where did all the carrageenan go?

To replicate the creamy texture of cow’s milk and prevent separation, companies add thickeners and stabilizers such as sunflower lecithin, gellan gum, and carrageenan.

You might notice more brands declaring their products “carrageenan-free.” It’s worth checking the ingredients list to be sure.

Derived from seaweed and used in all kinds of foods, from deli meat to ice cream, carrageenan has been linked to gastrointestinal problems, which is why companies are increasingly phasing it out. “Some experts say it irritates the gut lining and…

6 things you should do immediately after a workout to make it count

MICHELLE BRIDGES
Associated Press Workouts are important – but so is post-workout care.

In a good week, let’s say you spend seven hours working out. That might sound like a lot of gym time, but it still leaves 161 hours during which you could either undermine all of that hard work, or speed-up results with some smart lifestyle tweaks.

How you eat and what you do in the hours following exercise can dramatically impact whether your body continues to burn more calories, repair, and build muscle in all the places you want it — or if you simply plateau and don’t see any results. We spoke with Barry’s Bootcamp trainer Kate Lemere and nutritionist Lee Holmes to find out exactly which supplements to take, diet tweaks you should follow, and activities worth trying out post-workout to maximize results.

Load up on magnesium

Magnesium is used in just about everything your body does to effectively exercise and build muscle, including protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, blood glucose control, and energy production. Because we tend to lose magnesium as we sweat during a workout, eating magnesium-rich foods — such as dark leafy greens, regular milk, almonds, cashews, sesame seeds, fish (like wild salmon and halibut), and avocado — is an important way to replenish and repair your tired body, and help you get the most out of your efforts at the gym.

If you experience painful muscle cramps, Holmes says this could be a sign that your magnesium levels are too low. “Lack of magnesium can cause muscle spasms, however when taken after exercise it can help to calm your muscles down,” she says. She also recommends taking an Epsom salt bath, which is high in magnesium and can help in the same way as an oral supplement.

Get a massage — or do it yourself

Here’s the good news: Science says you need a post-workout massage. Not only can it speed up recovery time, but a recent study found that massage after heavy exercise can also improve muscle strength. “Working out the lactic acid that builds up in your muscles can be painful, but it’s so worth the temporary pain to feel that sweet relief afterward,” Lemere says.

If you can’t justify getting a pro to rub you down after every SoulCycle class, buy a foam roller, and try some moves at home. Rollers sell for around $15 online, and there’s a ton of great, free information available about how to use them.

Possible new view of diabetes

Possible new view of diabetes
The islet on the left shows the disrupted and depleted beta cells of T1D.

It’s hard to change entrenched ideas in science.

Protein is the genetic material.

Genes are continuous and immobile.

The genome consists of 120,000 genes; no, 80,000; no, 60,000; no, 20,325.

What we know about the natural world changes as we learn more. That’s why there’s no such thing as scientific “proof,” just evidence, hypotheses, and, rarely, enough findings to support a theory. Science is evidence-based, from observations and experiments. We don’t “believe” in evolution or climate change as if it is a religion. Yet presenting evidence that challenges a long-held idea can be difficult for a researcher.

Bryon Petersen, PhD, director of the Pediatric Stem Cell Research and Hepatic Disorders Child Health Research Institute at the University of Florida is in the uncomfortable position of challenging dogma, knows that well. His findings suggest that type 1 diabetes (T1D) might not directly be autoimmune in origin, and that tracking blood glucose might not be the only way to manage the disease.

His team has just published a paper in the journal Laboratory Investigation, “Suppression of islet homeostasis protein thwarts diabetes mellitus progression,” that puts a little-known molecule on the radar: islet homeostasis protein, aka IHoP.

People with type 1 diabetes make too much IHoP. Plus, experiments in mice and humans show that decreasing IHoP restores blood glucose control and increases the number of insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Perhaps most importantly, excess IHoP is in the blood of patients, making it a possible new biomarker for T1D.

Anatomy of a pancreas

The pancreas is a dual gland. The exocrine part makes and sends enzymes into digestive juice in the small intestine. That’s not the part important in diabetes.

The endocrine (hormone) component consists of cell clusters called islets. An islet harbors four types of cells. About 15 to 20% of the islet cells are the alpha type, which release glucagon. This hormone raises the level of blood glucose by stimulating the liver to break down the stored form (glycogen) and converts noncarbs, such as amino acids, into even more glucose.

The more abundant beta cells in the islets produce a different hormone, insulin. It counters glucagon, stimulating the liver to instead string glucose molecules into glycogen, and keeps other nutrients from being changed into glucose. Insulin also stimulates cells with receptors for it to take up glucose from the bloodstream. This is why…

The Ultimate Guide to Vegan Protein Sources

“Where do you get your protein?”

It is a question all too common for anyone who has tried to reduce their consumption of animal products. Likewise, it is one of the first concerns one may have after learning about the cruelty and environmental impact of the factory farming industry, or the health risks excess animal products can cause.The idea that a vegan diet is not adequate in protein, even for very active individuals, is a myth that many people believe. However, this is far from the truth.

There are many reasons why this myth is perpetrated, but here are four big ones:

The Incomplete Protein Myth

  1. The “incomplete protein myth” states that you need to combine certain plant foods to get all of the essential amino acids that your body needs. The reality is that ALL plant foods are complete proteins, but some may have higher amounts of certain amino acids than others. As long as your diet is somewhat varied, combining specific foods during meals is unnecessary. Even the creator of the “protein combining” theory has retracted their opinion on this subject.

Uncertainty As to Which Plant Foods are High in Protein

  1. People may think they need animal products to get protein simply because they don’t know how much protein plant foods actually contain. Here is a short list of accessible and easy to prepare foods that illustrate how easy it is to meet daily protein requirements as a vegetarian:
    • Soybeans dried: 100g = 40g protein
    • Lentils: 100g dried = 26g protein
    • Split Peas: 100g dried = 25g protein
    • Oats: 100g dried = 17g protein 
      The list goes on!


 

Weak Anecdotal Evidence

  1. Since a very low percentage of the population are vegan, one may know few, if any, athletes who eat purely vegetarian. Most who are into strength and exercise have been told they need to a lot of animal protein, and they pass this information onto others. This can even include doctors or professional athletes. However, anecdotal claims are not facts, and can be easily skewed or bias. That’s why it is important to be informed of actual facts from properly conducted research rather than individual claims.

Deceptive Marketing Tactics

  1. Food companies are constantly promoting their products as a “good source of protein”. This is a bit of a misnomer since “protein deficiency” is nearly impossible if you are consuming your daily recommended amount of calories. Medical protein deficiency, known as kwashiorkor, is very rare and mainly found in starving populations. Foods such as potatoes or whole wheat pasta are adequate sources of protein that would add up quickly if you consumed 2000 calories of it (we don’t recommend this, though). The most current scientific knowledge on nutrient needs suggest a very active 6 feet tall 180lb man only needs 65g of protein a day. You can check your requirements here.

If you’re interested in learning more about vegan protein sources, check out the full article located at: https://thrivecuisine.com/lifestyle/ultimate-guide-vegan-protein

 

10 Nutrition Mistakes Vegans Make (and How to Fix Them)

Our friends at Shape explain why almond milk and quinoa are not always enough to satisfy your vegan nutrition needs.

Mistake: Overestimating Your Protein Intake

While almonds are rich in protein with 6 grams per ounce, many plant-based eaters are shocked to learn that almond milk isn’t. In fact, it only contains 1 gram of protein for every cup. Solution: Add a tablespoon of almond butter to your smoothie or try adding soaked whole almonds like in this apple celery almond smoothie. You can also try using some plant-based protein powder to make sure you’re getting the muscle-building, hunger-zapping macros you need.

Quinoa is another misunderstood food for vegans, as it might be impressive compared to other plant-based foods—after all, it contains all of the essential amino acids, but the total amount of protein isn’t much to write home about. Half a cup of quinoa has about 4 grams of protein. Quinoa still serves up plenty of slow-digesting carbs for long-lasting energy and plenty of filling fiber, but be sure to add some beans, nuts, or seeds to up the total protein.

Mistake: Not Getting Enough Iron

Vegans need to basically double the amount of iron they’re getting compared to their meat-eating friends because animal-based sources of iron are generally absorbed better than plant-based sources. Plus, severely low iron levels can lead to anemia, which will make you feel weak and tired.

To make sure you’re getting enough, vegans should include plenty of iron-rich foods, such as spinach, tofu, beans, lentils, and sunflower butter into meals and snacks. Have a nut allergy? Not to worry, sunflower seed butter is free of the top eight food allergens including peanuts and tree nuts, and it packs 7 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per serving.

Mistake: Eating Fake, Processed “Meats”

When transitioning to a vegan diet, you may try to ease your way in with vegan versions of hot dogs, hamburgers, and meatballs. Don’t be fooled into thinking that these highly processed veggie meat alternatives are necessarily healthy choices. Sure, they can help you stick to a vegan diet if and when you’re craving the familiar flavor of meat, but these fake varieties are often loaded with sodium and are surprisingly low in protein. “Most processed foods don’t offer the same health benefits as whole, non-processed foods,” says dietitian Kristen Smith matter-of-factly.

P.S. These jackfruit recipes are a great way to convince your tastebuds you’re eating meat. Plus, the genius ingredient is so versatile.

Mistake: Snacking On Refined Carbs

Pretzels, licorice, corn or rice cereal, certain granola bars—they’re all snacks, and they’re all vegan, but that doesn’t make them healthy vegan snacks. Some vegans eat French fries, crackers, cookies, and candy, thinking that the carbs will provide them with a quick energy boost. Refined carbohydrates give you energy quickly, sure, but they leave you to crash and burn—and craving more white carbs and sugar.

Switch out those refined carbs for whole-grain and fiber-rich options that contain some protein, such as fresh fruit with nut butter, whole-grain crackers with seed butter,…

Best office snacks for weight loss: Top 5 healthy snacks to munch on while working

There aren’t a lot of healthy snacking options around while you’re in the office and those hunger pangs begin tormenting you. The easiest thing to do is to buy a pack of potato chips to munch on, while you work in the office, to satiate your hunger. However, you’re most likely to end up feeling guilty for indulging in the fried and salty snack, that has already derailed your diet regime, numerous times before. But there are a lot of healthy snacks to remedy your hunger in the office.

A little extra effort is all it will take for you to start snacking healthy while working. Opt for foods that are high in nutrients and low in saturated fat and simple carbohydrates. A lot of vegetarian foods make for healthy snacks, that are also easily available, easy to store and carry to your workplace. You can keep a pack or two of these snacks listed below near your work desk, to prevent the need to indulge in any unhealthy foods. ALSO READ: Breakfast foods for weight loss: Top 7 foods to eat in the morning to lose weight faster!

These are the top five healthy vegetarian snacks that you can munch on, while in the office:

1. Gram or dark chickpea (Kala Chana)

Kala Chana with jaggery is one of the most widely eaten snacks in India. We all have winter memories of eating the yummy combo, while lazing in front of the TV, huddled together with our families. But minus the jaggery, the chana is a very good and a healthy alternative to an evening snack. It’s filling, delicious and nutritious and that’s why you can indulge in as much chana as you want, without feeling guilty. It’s a rich source of protein, fiber and iron, besides being an energizing food. One cup of dried kala chana contains as much as 360 calories, with 17 gm of fiber, 60 gm of carbohydrates, 19 gm of proteins and only 5 gm fat. The quantity of proteins in one cup of the food is about 30 per cent of the daily intake requirement of an average adult. ALSO READ: Best Food Pairings for Weight Loss: Top 5 super food pairs to loose weight faster

2. Roasted nuts

Almonds, cashews and walnuts are the healthiest snack foods you can have beside yourself while working. They are heart healthy and…

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