Despite what many people believe, the likes of Lewis Hamilton, Venus Williams, Ryan Stills, Jermain Defoe and Hannah Teter have proven that fuelling your body and consuming enough protein is certainly not an issue as a vegan. Misconceptions about vegan diets not containing enough protein are consistently being shown to be false, whether you are a high performance athlete or simply wanting to look after your body.
Focus On Your Protein
Next up, we have one of the most important components of building muscle which is focusing on your protein intake. Protein is vital in helping the muscle to recover because the amino acids, which are building blocks of protein, help to repair and maintain muscle tissue. So, when the muscles break down slightly during a workout, the amino acids in protein help it to rebuild, therefore causing growth.
There are so many plant-based foods that are packed full of protein, including tofu, seitan, lentils, beans, nutritional yeast, vegan protein powders and vegan meat alternatives. When building muscle, around 25-35% of your calories should be made up of protein.
The satay noodles recipe above contains around 30g of protein when eaten with a portion of tofu, a protein shake with oat milk contains around 30g (depending on the powder) and a vegan protein yoghurt as a snack with fresh berries also contains about 30g. People think that consuming enough protein through a vegan diet is difficult, but when you know where to find it, you’ll see it’s actually really simple.
Meal Prep At The Beginning of The Week
Now, we will move onto how you can plan to incorporate more of these vital foods into your diet. Trying to track all of the different meals you are eating throughout the week can be difficult. So, the best thing you can do is sit down over the weekend, look for different recipes online, figure out what the macros are and then make a list so you buy everything in one go. Then, on a Sunday, you could spend a few hours meal prepping for the whole week. You could keep a few meals fresh in the fridge and freeze any for later in the week, so they stay nice and fresh. Using an app to track your food makes this much easier, as you can save your favourite recipes to make tracking throughout the week quick and simple.
Many people don’t have the time to prepare meals like this, which is understandable, so using a vegan meal prep company is a great alternative and you will also know exactly how many macros are in everything. You could just get these for your lunches to take to work, to take the pressure off without compromising on your ability to build muscle. Plus, this reduces food waste quite significantly for many people.
Otherwise, there are so many different sites offering interesting and diverse vegan meal prep recipes. It can be difficult to continually come up with new meal ideas that get you excited about eating healthily, so having a bit of inspiration comes in very handy. You can swap and change particular ingredients if you aren’t a fan of something which is a great benefit of making it yourself.
Eating vegan and building muscle can be extremely effective and also so delicious when done right. It also doesn’t have to be complicated. Simply increase your calorie intake, find the right balance of fats, carbohydrates and protein in your diet, get organised by planning meals and don’t forget to enjoy it!