10 High-Protein Vegetables to Add to Your Diet Today

Plant-Based Vegetables Photo

Meat and fish aren’t the only dietary sources of protein. Veggies, legumes, and other vegetarian foods can also provide this power nutrient. But you don’t have to be a vegetarian to turn to vegetables for protein. There are lots of good reasons, other than vegetarianism, to integrate high-protein vegetables into your diet.

Benefits of Eating Plant-Based Protein

There are major health benefits to eating more plant-based protein:

  • Weight loss
  • Improved muscle mass
  • Tissue repair
  • Lower risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Lower risk of diabetes
  • Lowered blood pressure

Some research shows a meatless diet reduces the risk of death from any natural cause (disease or other health problems). [1]

10 High-Protein Vegetables to Add to Your Diet Today

  1. WatercressWatercress is a cruciferous plant that grows in water. Watercress also offers vitamins K, A, C and B, calcium, manganese, and potassium along with antioxidant benefits, and it contains phenolic compounds that may help prevent cancer. [2]
  2. Broccoli. Broccoli contains large amounts of vitamins C, K, and potassium. It is also high in various bioactive nutrients that may help protect against certain cancers. [3]
  3. Peas.  Peas are an excellent source of protein, in fact, they provide some of the highest amounts of protein found in vegetables. They also provide high amounts of potassium, vitamin A, and fiber. You’ll get this protein whether you eat your peas fresh or frozen. [4]
  4. Spinach. Spinach is known as a “super food,” and not only to Popeye! It is a great source of protein along with other vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, such as folic acid and vitamins C and B. [5]
  5. Brussels Sprouts. These cruciferous sprouts are a great source of vitamins A, C, B6, and K, folate, iron, calcium, potassium, and fiber. They can be boiled, steamed, grilled or roasted.
  6. Sweet Corn. Not to be confused with field corn, which is considered a grain, sweet corn is considered a vegetable. Whether eaten fresh or frozen, corn provides a good amount of protein as well as fiber.
  7. Lima Beans. Lima beans are considered both a vegetable and a legume. Their high content of fiber and protein makes them another super food. [8]
  8. Asparagus. Providing over 2 grams of protein per every 100 grams, asparagus also acts as a diuretic, decreasing water retention. Asparagus provides, in addition to protein, high amounts of vitamin K, potassium, folate, copper, magnesium and antioxidants. [9] [10]
  9. Cauliflower. Cauliflower matches broccoli in regards to providing high amounts of protein per calorie. Cauliflower also provides vitamins K and C, potassium, magnesium, calcium and iron. Cauliflower has a high amount of a glucosinolate compound called sinigrin. This is thought to have anticancer, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. [11]
  10. Collard Greens. This dark green, loose-leafed vegetable is of the same family as broccoli and cauliflower. They are an excellent source of protein, calcium, potassium, phenolic compounds and antioxidants. The high amounts of antioxidants have, in fact, been linked to a decrease in risks of prostate cancer. [12] [13] [14]

Getting your protein from plant-based sources is not an option only for vegetarians. Proteins from different sources provide different benefits and protein gotten from plants does not have the fat drawbacks that come with meat and nuts. These are only 10 examples, there are many, many more. Research, find out the amounts of protein offered for the vegetable, find which method of preparation preserves the most protein, vitamins and minerals, find some great recipes and you’ve added nutrients along with increased choices and options – something needed for success in every diet!

Image Credit: www.bodybuilding.com

Post by Andrea Rogers