Posts Tagged ‘Tofu’
Does this mean that you have to eat bones to have strong bones? Well, sort of. While it is fun to envision people chewing on Flintstone-sized bones, the Flintstone characters did something right. They ate huge Brontosaurus steaks, which were PROTEIN. The content of our bones is, surprizingly, over 80% Protein. Therefore, we must eat enough Protein to maintain and strengthen our bones (and muscles).
The USDA recommends approximately 1 gram of Protein per kilogram of body weight per day. Eating that much Protein daily will maintain a healthy body, including bone and muscle. Persons over age 65 actually need MORE Protein rather than less, for the same sized body.
How much Protein do you need? This often asked question is answered based on how much you weigh. If you weigh:
Bones are primarily made of protein. Sure, we think of them as mostly calcium, but calcium is only a small portion of the total construct. Most of Bone Matrix, the part that is not marrow, is collagen. Collagen is protein.
Protein is essential in our diet. But many are now cutting back on red meat because of the threat of cholesterol and triglycerides in fatty meats. Others elininate meat for perceived ethical considerations. But we still need protein!! And we can get it.
Lean meats such as poultry, fish, and bison can answer the cholesterol and triglyceride issues. So can low fat ricotta and cottage cheeses (28g/cup). Mollusks and crustaceans too. But what of non-animal sources?
A parent is worried about a teen-aged daughter who has decided that she is a Vegan. She has decided that she will be more healthy if she avoids all animal products. But she has not yet added the plant products necessary for those who avoid meat and dairy. A healthy diet is more about what is included than what is avoided.
Protein, Calcium, and B vitamins are among the essential nutrients that need to be replaced. We need to look to people who have had centuries to discover what foods are necessary when meat is rare or absent. Tofu, lentils, garbanzos, and beans of many varieties head the list. All grains , including rice, should be eaten brown and whole.