Plant Based Protein for Picky Eaters

One thing that is important to me is to make sure that I get enough protein. Being a picky eater, this is a plant based protein sources one for me as I do not like the go to vegetarian protein sources: beans, lentils and weird (to me) meat substitutes … and I worry about getting all the essential amino acids.

If you were to ask my family, I would be among the top contenders for world’s pickiest eater.

Several years ago, I made the choice to be vegetarian.
This came as a surprise to my family as I was known as THE meat eater in the family. Then they questioned me as to what I would eat, knowing that I am picky. If I had to narrow it down, I would say that I love dry crunchy foods and raw crunchy veggies.

Plant based protein for picky eaters

Why is protein important?

Protein has been called the building block of life.
Protein is needed by the body to repair tissues and to make enzymes and hormones. It is also used as building blocks for skin, bones, muscles, cartage, and even blood. Protein is made up of combinations of 20 different amino acids. Nine of these amino acids — histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine — are considered essential amino acids that cannot be synthesised by most mammals, including humans. They must be obtained by food sources.
While most people are actually not deficient, I personally worry because I do eat such a limited number of foods and do not eat meat.

Plant Based Protein Sources for Picky Eaters

Quinoa

8 grams of protein per 1 cup (cooked)

Quinoa is an ancient grain, is gluten free and is a good source of iron, zinc and magnesium.

This one I have just started eating on its own.
I usually mix it in with rice. Up to a couple of years ago, rice was on the long list of foods that I would not eat. Quinoa has a crunchier texture than rice which took me a while to get used to.

Hemp Seeds – Hemp Hearts

10 grams of protein per 3 Tablespoons

Hemp hearts are not only a complete protein, but also a good source of Omega-3 and Omega-6. They’re also a good source of iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, and zinc.

It has a nutty flavour. When I feel a little bit snacky, I will eat a spoonful of hemp hearts. I recently tried hemp hearts as a protein “addition” to my salad. It was okay, but since the salad was wet it was a weird texture experience for me. Looking back, I would have preferred it on the side.
I usually add this to my cereal, granola or add it to chia seeds and it eat with a spoon — dry.
I hate wet and soggy chia seeds.

Spirulina

4 grams of protein per 1 tablespoon (7 grams) of powder

This blue green algae tastes horrible mixed in water and smells funky as a encapsulated supplement. I prefer to take it as a supplement. The usual capsule is about 500 mg. Two capsules would be 1000 mg, which is one gram of spirulina powder. You would have to take 14 capsules to get 14 grams of protein. Not really worth it in my opinion unless you really need the protein. The best way would be to use the powder… but ewww.

Interesting side note.
When I was re-watching Earth 2 a few years ago, my ears perked up when I heard them say they had brought sprirulina with them as their food source. This was after reading about the benefits of it and the author of the natural health book boasting that you could survive solely off of it.

Spirulina is a source of complete protein has good amounts of B vitamins, copper, and iron.

Chia Seeds

4 grams of protein per 2 Tablespoons

Chia seeds are tiny little round seeds that are usually black or white.
They absorb liquid and make a gel like substance. I hear (and read) that people like this. They make chia pudding out of it. It can be used as an egg substitute in baking. It can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, granola and even as a salad topper.
They’re a good source of omega-3, iron, calcium, magnesium, and selenium

Potatoes – A high quality plant based protein source –

8 grams of protein per 299 grams ~ a large potato, baked with skin

Potatoes are unfortunately high in starchy carbohydrates and low in fibre. The fibre is found in the skin. They provide the lowest amount of protein of the common plant based proteins that I actually eat, yet the quality of the protein is actually quite high for it to be a plant based protein. Baking or boiling poatoes with the skin helps to retain the nutrients like Vitamin C, potassium, folate and B6.

Sweet Yellow Corn

5 grams of protein per cup (164 grams)

Like potatoes, corn is high in starchy carbs. Starches can cause a rise in your blood sugar. Fibre can slow the process. One cup of sweet yellow corn has 5 grams of fibre. Sweet yellow corn also

Broccoli

3 grams of protein per 91 grams (1 cup)

I only eat broccoli raw.
For my family, I drizzle the broccoli with some olive oil and garlic powder and roast it.

Its Vitamin C, K1, folate, potassium, manganese, and iron.

Almonds

6 grams of protein per 28 grams ~24 whole unsalted almonds

Almonds contain small amounts of all the essential and non-essential amino acids. When it comes to nuts, almonds have the highest protein content.

Walnuts

4 grams of protein per 28 grams ~ 7 whole or 14 halves

Good source of manganese, copper, magnesium, and phosphorous. Also a good source of B6, folate. and thiamin.

There you have it!
A list of plant based proteins that I, as a picky eater, will eat and enjoy.
Some of these foods are even listed on mood boosting foods post and my immune boosting nutrients post.


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Work From Home Green and Sustainably

green work from home guide

Working from home has the best commute ever!
The COVID-19 pandemic lockdown has forced many people to work from home. I am fortunate enough to be one of these people. Whether your work from home experience is related to this crisis or its a perk of your job, here are some ideas to help make your teleworking experience as green and sustainable as possible.

This post does contain an affiliate link.
If you decide to purchase, we get a small percentage of the sale, at no cost to you.

Develop Energy Saving Habits While Working From Home

Working from home, you have the ability to implement energy-saving habits. Turn your computer off at night? You can go one step further and unplug or turn off the power strip when you’re finished for the day or week.
Most electronics have an “eco mode” that will conserve power.
Are you leaving your computer or laptop for a while? Sleep mode!
It’s always a good idea to unplug electrical items if you aren’t using them.

You can also set up your workspace to maximize the use of natural lighting.
Don’t have that much access to natural lighting? Using energy-efficient LED light bulbs can help save energy, usually last a very long time-saving money as well.
If you’re able, work outside.
Just being in nature can help relieve stress and make you more productive.

Go Green and Paperless

Digital Notebooks

I have personally used One Note.
It automatically syncs and saves with the ability to access from multiple devices. Make use of the highlighting and tags for easy follow-up and quickly search for keywords in your entire library! You can insert images and information from other apps, files or web pages. You can even record audio or video messages as you go!
Pages or entire notebooks can be shared with others, who can also contribute to the notes.
If needed, you can also password-protect sections you want to keep private.

Smart Printing

Set your default printer to print to a PDF or a cloud network like Google Drive. This way, you will avoid printing on paper by mistake! Using this method will help you get into the habit of saving digital copies instead of printing paper copies.
If you must print, try to use the duplex setting to save paper and recycle — if you cant.

Digital Signatures

Digital signatures are a great option to take advantage of if it’s available.
At my work, we had to wait for some forms to be optimized.
Being able to sign PDFs by inserting your signature electronically saves on paper and time. It is cumbersome and wasteful to print the document, sign, scan, and send it back. If this is the only option, make sure only to print the needed pages.

Air Quality

Working from home, being in your own space, you can control air quality.
Every year, many people suffer from sick building syndrome. Caused by poor indoor air quality, sick building syndrome can result in poor performance and headaches.
Most workplaces don’t have windows that can be opened, contributing to reduced indoor air quality. Opening your windows at home can be a fantastic way to get fresh air and also cool your living space — depending on your climate.


House plants are an easy and fun way to help clean the air and introduce the natural element into your workspace. I suggest making sure that they are non-toxic to your pets if you have any. Spider plants are pretty straightforward to take care of, can help clean the air and are pet safe. Parlour Palms and Money Trees are good and pet safe as well. They are a bit harder for me to keep alive, due in part to my cat chewing on them.

Air Purifying Plants

I love diffusing essential oils, creating blends that help me to be calmer, focus, and be more productive.
One of the downsides to working in offices was that they were often scent-free zones.
Which I totally understand and support.
Being at home gives you greater control.

Additionally, you can also purchase an air purifier to improve your air quality. We purchased the one below from Amazon.ca during the lockdown.

The Blue Pure 411 air purifier has a three-part filtration system that captures 99% of common airborne PM 2.5 pollutants such as allergens, odours, smoke, mould spores, dust mites and pet dander.

Eco-Friendly Choices and Local Supplies

Just because you are working from home doesn’t mean that you have to rush out and buy a whole new office set up.
Already have an office or workspace at home? Great!
The dining room or kitchen table can work in a pinch.
For the first couple of months of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, I used the dining room table as my workspace to allow me to interact with the family.
Check out local buy nothing groups, freecycle, buy/sell/trade groups, thrift shops, and online classifieds for office furniture.
Will you be buying new? Try to get the most eco-friendly and sustainable products you can find. Bonus points if you can find it locally and don’t have to rely on online shipping. If you’re able to, try and support local office supply stores instead of large chain retailers when it comes to office supplies.


Use Non-Toxic Cleaners

Most offices and public spaces have to make use of heavy-duty and industrial-strength cleaners due to the number of people sharing the space.
A benefit of being in your own environment is that you can use non-toxic cleaners.

There are many commercially available brands, but a mixture of equal parts white vinegar and water can be effective at cleaning. You can add essential oils to that have cleaning properties, or just for a refreshing scent. Recently, I have started using Thieves cleaner from Young Living. Environmentally friendly and non-toxic cleaners are safer for you and the environment.

Remember the basics!
Always implement the Five R’s
Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Re-purpose, Recycle!


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