The Protein Myth Revisited
The belief that the primary source of dietary protein should be meat and dairy products is one of the biggest persistent misconceptions in our society. Many people are set to believe that without incorporation of animal-based protein in the diet, it is not possible to perform as an athlete or live a healthy life. This belief is a misconception that is spreading everywhere fueled by recent advertisements and campaigns pushing to have chocolate milk as an athletic beverage for optimal nutrition. Fitness expert testimonials and some compelling food labels in the market have also contributed immensely to the same.
This protein belief has been ingrained in many people’s mind and has seemed difficult to challenge its propriety and prove wrong. From a personal perspective, I believe that this is just a pervasive misleading notion that is altogether utterly false and fueled by powerful and well-funded campaigns run by food companies for their selfish interests.
This animal protein misconception is not only deceiving but also misleading the public to consume low-fiber factory foods laden with pesticides, hormones, and saturated fat. These foods are indeed a major contributing factor to increased heart disease epidemics and other complications that have only rendered our countries destitute by claiming the lives of people who would have contributed positively to the economy.
Protein is a vital nutrient consisting of twenty different amino acids essential in repairing and building muscle tissue. Through scientific research, it is evident that the source and amount of protein consumed matters a lot. Eleven of the amino acids in proteins are naturally synthesized by our bodies, and the remaining nine ingested from what we eat. Technically, this means that our bodies require a specific number and type of amino acids. Nine of these essential amino acids are hardly obtainable from the animal kingdom, to be precise.
Science has also established that both whey and casein from animal products contribute mainly to degenerative diseases, and our bodies have a difficult time synthesizing protein from these sources. This family of proteins has been associated with the onset of numerous diseases, which includes of cancer and strokes. For this reason, from a personal perspective, plant-based protein is best for improving and revitalizing the fitness of many people.
Plant-Based Protein is What We Are Biologically Meant to Eat
The self-evident truth about our biology is that we are frugivorous, relatives of the great apes, whose diets primarily consist of tropical fruits and leaves. Yet, these animals have strong, muscular bodies. Studies conclude that gorillas can be upwards to 15 times stronger than a human being. That’s a lot of protein fueling those muscles! But where does it come from?
Plants, of course. The gorilla diet consists of well over 50% fruit, the rest being made up of leafy greens, roots and shoots, with the occasional termite thrown in. The bonobo, an even closer relative to ours, subsists on fruits, flowers, and leaves. Biologically speaking, these are our closest relatives in nature, and our biology proves it. Remember, biology dictates diet. Not anything else. No amount of philosophical argumentation, religious practice, custom, tradition, or belief supersedes our own biology.
Which means, of course, that our bodies are designed to get their protein from plants. Though we can make use of the protein from animal sources, it is through great effort for our cells, and ultimately, animal protein breaks down our bodies due to its acidity. Nutrients must be leeched from our bones in order to balance our bodies. It’s impossible to be truly healthy if you are eating animal protein, it doesn’t matter who you are, even if you are a world-class athlete. Your arteries are still being clogged, your liver is still working overtime, and your bones are still deteriorating because they are being used by your body as a buffer against the animal acidity.
It’s important to note the rate at which professional athletes and body builders who eat a typical western diet succumb to diseases like multiple sclerosis and osteoporosis, as well as heart disease, once they reach around 50 years of age. Their diet catches up with them, and even though they may look relatively healthy on the outside, their joints are killing them and their hearts are straining.
We cannot digest animal protein without serious issues down the line. Plant-based protein is starting to be recognized as our optimal source of protein and overall nutrition. Even world-class athletes are beginning to cut animal protein out of their diets completely.
Below are also a number of athletes who strongly support me on this stand having used plant-based proteins and achieved exceptional milestones in athletics.
- Patrik Baboumian a world record breaker on most weight carried by a single human being having hauled over 1200 pounds for a distance of 10 meters in Toronto.
- Timoty Shieff a world champion free-runner who hop-scotches off rooftops just like a video game character.
- MMA and UFC fighters Mac Danzig, Jake Shields and James Wilks.
- Multisport athletes Brendan Brazier, Esselstyn, and Ben Bostrom, renowned for motorcycle, mountain bike, and road bike racing.
- Professional triathlete and world champion Hillary Biscay who has recently raced her 66th Ironman.
- David Carter, a defensive player of the Oakland Raiders.
- Ultra-marathoners Scott Jurek, Michael Arnstein, and Jason Lester.
- And finally Timothy Bradley, Jr., who defeated Manny Pacquiao in their latest fight.
Each of these athletes will tell you that rather than milk, eggs, steak and whey supplements, opt instead to obtain your protein requirements from plant-based sources such as beans, hemp seeds, almonds and quinoa for optimal nutrition and this will get you exactly what you are striving to achieve. A variety of fresh fruit will also do you good if incorporated into your diet. It is also not scientifically proven that consumption of protein beyond the required 10 percent calories per day stimulates further muscle growth, so just stick to a little intake of proteins as this is sufficient for the body.
The elephant, hippo, rhino, and gorilla- some of the fiercest wild animals, are also herbivores. These sorely feed on plants get 99% of their protein from these plants. These animals present enough proof to convince one to put away animal protein and embark on consuming vegan protein.
This protein craze is just a dangerous over-hyped myth. It may seem hard to believe, but adopting vegan protein will not only improve your health but also boost your athletic performance. Avoid an excess animal protein intake for it is unnecessary and will only contribute to the onset of a numerous of diseases that can easily be avoided.