Protein Power

By bumping up your plant intake you'll easily hit your five-a day, so what about other nurtrients like protein. Foods like steak, chicken and tuna aren't the only sources - beans, pulses, grains and soya are also packed with it. It's recommended that the average women should eat about 45g of protein a day, so as long you maintain a well- balanced diet, you'll be fine.

Here are a few common meat and dairy products with the protein value they hold, compare these with the plant based alternatives below and choose inventive ways to incorporate them into your diet:

*Milk, 250ml serving - 8.7g

*Eggs, 1 Medium - 7.1g

*Steak, 70g per serving - 19g

*Cheese, 30g serving - 7.7g


Almonds 30g serving 6.4g Protein

Snack your way to your daily protein allowances with a handful of almonds. Not only will these stop you craving sugary treats between meals, they contain fibre and are said to lower cholesterol, too. Plus they're a good source of victim E and other antioxidants that nourish the skin and reduce signs of ageing.

Soya Milk 250ml serving - 8.5g Protein

Pour it on your cereal or use it to make your porridge and you've already started your day with a hefty serving of plant based protein.

When fortified, soya milk contains almost as much calcium as dairy milk, so you're not missing out on switching to soya. In fact you r going for a low fat option.

Chickpeas 120g serving - 8.6g Protein

Low cost and low in fat, add half a tin of cooked chickpeas to a salad and you've got a quick and easy protein packed lunch that'll keep you full through the afternoon. Or why not whizz them up in a food processor along with tahini, lemon juice, garlic and water, to make your very own humous. This versatile legume also forms the base of falafels and works great in curry, too.

Tofu 100g serving 12.6g Protein

Firm tofu, or soya bean curd, can be marinated and livened up in stir fry, while soft, or silken, tofu can be used to make sauces, creamy salad dressings and even chocolate mousse. Tofu contains all essential amino acids, so is a complete source of protein. Plus its excellent source of iron and calcium. If you want to pack even more protein into your diet try cooking with tempeh, a nuttier, less process option made with fermented soya beans.

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