Why I Don’t Worry About Protein

I’ll start by saying, you do you. If you find that counting macros (protein, carbs and fat grams) works for you, get on with your bad self. I personally don’t do this, and one question I get asked a lot is how I know I’m getting enough protein when eating a plant-based diet.

First, what’s enough? There are several different theories on how much protein we should have, but true protein deficiency is extremely rare and is seen in malnourished children in developing countries. I live in a first world country and eat quite a lot.

Secondly, I want to be very transparent and say that I do eat some animal protein sources on occasion. I might have fish once or twice a week, the same with eggs, and then meat and dairy perhaps once a month or so, if at all. If I crave something, I honor that craving and make sure to get the best quality I can find.

Which brings me to my final point, which is to say that I trust my body. Eating mostly plants brings my body so much joy and energy, and plants have plenty of protein. I eat foods like edamame, tempeh, nuts, seeds, legumes and lots of leafy greens, all of which contain protein. I find by relying on my intuition, honoring my body’s natural cravings and eating an abundant variety of plant foods gives me everything I need.

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