In order to build muscle, you need protein. The amount of vegan protein needed for building muscle depends on how much you want to build and how often it is taken in.
Plant-based protein sources can be found in many different types of foods: beans, nuts, soy products and more! One thing that is important to note is the importance of timing your intake because not all proteins are absorbed at the same rate.
The goal with this blog post is two-fold: firstly, to educate you about how much vegan protein you should consume if you want to maintain or build muscle; secondly, show you some of the best plant-based protein sources (i.e., what foods provide the highest levels of vegan protein).
What is vegan protein and why do you need it to build muscle?
Protein is one of three macronutrients, and is essential for building muscle mass. The other two are carbohydrates and fats. All three are needed in some form for optimal health, but protein is the most difficult to get from a vegan diet without consuming too many calories or fat.
Vegan (or plant-based) protein is any protein from a plant source, such as soybeans or quinoa. It’s often consumed instead of animal-based proteins like meat and dairy products to help reduce the risk for heart disease, cancer, obesity, and diabetes, as well as for personal or environmental reasons.
To build muscle, you need to ensure that you have adequate protein in your diet. This is because it’s needed to replace the protein that is broken down when training. It is also a building block for muscle, and it provides amino acids among other nutrients needed by your muscles.
How much vegan protein do you need to build muscle?
The most important step you’ll need to take is to calculate how much protein you’ll need per day to aid muscle growth from exercise.
Your body needs a range of 1.2-1.7 grams of protein per kilogram to build muscle, and 0.5-0.8 grams per pound of your weight if you are lifting weights or training for a running or cycling event.
Based on those numbers, if you weigh 120 pounds, you will need to be consuming at least 60 grams of vegan protein per day to build muscle.
If you weigh 140 pounds, and this is your goal weight for building muscle as well (bodybuilding), then I would recommend that you consume at least 80-100 grams of vegan protein per day.
It’s recommended to take these amounts in divided doses throughout the day every three hours or so on a daily basis. You want to make sure that your body has a constant supply of plant-based protein throughout the day to aid your muscle recovery and growth, especially post-workout.
We recommend using an app such as MyfitnessPal to help track your protein intake throughout the day.
Vegan sources of protein
There are a large number of high-quality sources of plant-based protein, namely beans, soy, nuts, seeds and vegetables.
A number of these sources are high in protein while also being low in fat content or carbohydrate content – which is a good thing for those who want to build muscle whilst staying lean! Check out the list below:
– Beans: peas (11g per cup), mung beans (17g per cup)
– Soybeans: edamame (16g per half stick/pod), tempeh (14 grams per three ounces)
– Nuts & Seeds: almonds 16g per quarter cup; cashews 13g per quarter cup; macadamia nuts 12g per quarter cup
– Vegetables: asparagus (16g per cup), broccoli (11 gm per half cup)
– Rice: brown rice 16g per quarter cup
– Quinoa: is a complex carbohydrate and protein at the same time. It’s not gluten-free but it has all nine amino acids that humans need. One serving of quinoa contains 18 grams of complete plant protein!
If you’re struggling to hit your protein macros each day, there are a large number of plant-based protein supplements available in the UK. From protein powders to snack bars and meal replacements, there are plenty of choices available!
Vegan supplements that will help with building muscle mass
There are a number of vegan supplements that can help you hit your protein goals each day. We recommend vegan protein powders, vegan meal replacements and vegan snack bars.
Vegan Protein Powders: There is a variety of options for both shake mix proteins as well as ready to drink (RTD) varieties in many flavours! Some of our plant-based protein powder recommendations are:
Vegan Meal Replacements: These might be more convenient for people who don’t enjoy cooking or preparing their own food because they come already prepared with all the nutrients you need like vitamins/minerals/fibre etc.
Vegan Snack Bars: These are great and convenient for on the go, or when you’re in between meals.
We hope this article has given you some good ideas for what to eat and when. If you’re still struggling with how much protein your body needs, or if there are any other questions related to the topic that we haven’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to reach out! There’s a lot of misinformation about plant-based proteins on the internet so it might be worth checking out some of our product reviews before buying anything.