Complete protein-What is it and where do I get it? (Ultimate Guide to Protein Part II)

Complete protein-What is it and where do I get it? (Ultimate Guide to Protein Part II)


Hey, what’s going on today, we’re going to talk about amino acids and also this idea of ‘complete proteins’ this is the second video on protein if you missed the first one definitely check it out link in the description below and also in The YouTube card, it’s that little ‘i’ in the corner. Today we’re gonna dig a little deeper. What’s a ‘complete protein’? What foods are ‘complete protein’ sources? I gotta stop with the air quotes. We’ll also take a look at specific amino acids What do I eat to get all the protein and all the amino acids I need? let’s get some answers Proteins are strings of amino acids. There are nine so-called essential amino acids. Meaning our body can’t produce them So we need to get them from food. They have names like histidine, isoleucine, Etc. Etc. They all sound like valley girl names. ‘Oh my god leucine. You’re like so cute right now’ There’s a lot of talk out there of complete protein and sometimes people just mean a food that contains all those 9 essential amino acids and Sometimes they mean it contains them in a certain proportion. Let’s take a look at this step by step There’s a common belief that animal foods like meat and eggs are complete protein sources Whereas plants are not and maybe there are some exceptions like quinoa that are complete but most plants are incomplete But is there any truth to that? let’s do some fact-checking According to the official USDA food database beef indeed contains all nine essential amino acids. No surprise there What about chicken? all nine. eggs? all nine. milk? all 9. Okay, so that checks out What about quinoa? Is it true It has all nine? Yes Tofu? also all nine Lentils? Yes. potatoes? Yup. broccoli, bananas, rice, cherries, you name it, They all have all nine essential amino acids. In fact all plants have all nine essential amino acids The opposite would be really surprising. each plant contains many proteins and each protein is a long string of amino acids So it would be really bizarre, if we found an entire plant, an entire organism, that was somehow missing one of the building blocks That’s for natural foods. with processed foods nutrients can be artificially added or removed. like for example, gelatin Which is a processed food of animal origin and it lacks one essential amino acid Here’s another way to think of this: those nine amino acids we can’t produce, the essential ones? pigs and chickens can’t produce them either So where are they getting them in the first place? Well from plants, of course Okay, fine. So all natural plant foods have all nine essential amino acids, but maybe they’re not in the correct proportion Maybe there’s too much of some and not enough of others Maybe a complete protein is not just a food that has all nine essential amino acids But also a food that has them in a certain correct proportion and maybe animal foods have that and plant foods don’t? let’s take a look at some specific foods. This is the breakdown for chicken, the amount of each essential amino acid And here’s a bowl of edamame. soybeans. the overall proportions are similar Although you can see some differences, a bit more of some amino acids a bit less of others That’s spirulina, which is an algae. pretty rich in the essential 9 That’s a cup of milk. That’s a cup of lentils That’s an egg. And that’s a peanutbutter sandwich The point here is not that plants have more protein We covered quantity in the first video and quantity is gonna depend on the exact food You’re looking at, the precise amount, etc. Animal foods have plenty of protein, plant foods hav plenty of protein what we’re looking at here is a amino acid balance and what we’ve seen so far is that there isn’t necessarily a huge difference It doesn’t mean that every single plant food is gonna be this rich in the essential 9 But it seems we have some pretty good options here. Okay, but this is isolated foods. Who cares, right? What I want to know is at the end of the day after all my meals, 10, 15, 20 different types of food mixed, Do I get all the amino acids I need? let’s look at this example from the first video breakfast: Blueberry oatmeal and a peanut butter sandwich, a couple hours later a handful of almonds. lunch: Lentils rice and broccoli and finally dinner: tempeh and mixed veggies That’s less than 1,500 calories total 2,000 being the ballpark daily intake and yet we already have 80 grams of protein total with every single essential amino acid being maxed out That’s how easy it is to get your daily requirements. And that’s the daily requirements calculated for me I’m 6’1”, 185 lbs give or take and I exercise almost every day. if you’re even bigger than me You’re gonna want to have more but if you’re bigger than me You’re gonna have a lot more than 1,500 calories in a day anyway, so that’s not an issue but for the vast majority of people this is already way more protein than you actually need and All we’ve counted is a few light meals and no snacks in between or anything So that’s how easy it is to get your protein. bottom line, If you like to eat meat eggs and dairy That’s your call But don’t let anybody tell you that you have to eat those foods Because there’s some magical amino acid in there that you can’t find anywhere else It’s your choice and it is a choice Plenty of protein in animal foods, plenty of protein in plant foods, and both have all the amino acids we need. in the words of these two protein experts: mixtures of plant proteins can serve as a complete and well-balanced source of amino acids that effectively meet human physiological requirements and they go on to explain Consumers do not need to be at all concerned about amino acid Imbalances when the dietary amino acid supply is from the plant food proteins that make up our usual diets Mixtures of plant proteins can be fully adequate for meeting human requirements. Okay. What about combining proteins? There’s an idea out there that plant protein needs to be deliberately combined so that the individual Deficiencies are averaged out. It is true that the best diet has a variety of plant foods. if your diet is 100% potatoes No, that’s not going to be ideal. But neither is a diet that’s 100% eggs or any animal or any plant food So, yes, you do want to mix it up: greens, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, fruit. That’s variety But we don’t need to worry about pairing up specific foods at each meal. Our body can store amino acids So even if you have a meal that’s short on one of the essential ones your body can complement it as long as you’re getting That variety of plant foods and you’re getting enough calories overall you’re covered for protein and you’re getting all the amino acids you need No need to worry and you don’t need to take it from me Here’s the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics The terms complete and incomplete are misleading in relation to plant protein protein from a variety of plant foods supplies enough of all essential amino acids As long as caloric requirements are met and here’s the American Heart Association You don’t need to eat foods from animals to have enough protein in your diet Plant proteins alone can provide enough of the essential and non-essential amino acids As long as sources of dietary protein are varied and calorie intake is high enough to meet energy needs. and they go on to explain: Whole grains legumes vegetables and seeds and nuts all contain both essential and non-essential amino acids You don’t need to consciously combine these foods within a given meal So again, as long as you’re not starving, you’re getting enough calories, You’re good for protein whether you choose to eat animal foods or not Okay, maybe this is fine for you and me, adults But what about kids? they need meat and dairy to grow tall and strong, right? No. here’s the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics again Plant-based diets are appropriate for all stages of life including pregnancy lactation infancy childhood Adolescence, older adulthood, you name it. Okay. So this is fine for normal people But what if I’m an athlete? then I need meat, right? plant-based athletes include Venus Williams, Tom Brady, NBA star Kyrie Irving and sprinter Carl Lewis during his prime okay fine, I can be an athlete at the highest level on plants But what if I want to build a ton of muscle then I need meat right? This is Olympian weightlifter, Kendrick Farris He’s a hundred percent plant-based So is this guy and this guy and this guy and here’s professional bodybuilder Nimai Delgado ‘I have beans, I have tofu. I have lots of greens, spinach broccoli All these things are packed with protein. You can build muscle faster. You can lose fat faster So, I mean it’s a win-win for me.’ Not only is he a hundred percent plant-based he’s vegetarian from birth. He’s never eaten a steak Okay, I think I’ve made my point we can get all the protein we need from animals or plants it’s our choice That’s it for today. We have a lot more to cover on protein absorption upper limits and much more So stay tuned and hit that subscribe button so you don’t miss any of the upcoming videos and I’ll see you on the next one