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Saturday, August 22, 2009

What foods have both fiber and protein?

Written by Tena Moore

Fiber and protein are both crucial to a healthy diet. Incorporating foods into your diet that contain both can be a very healthy move, especially if you are a vegetarian or vegan, since you will not be getting any protein from animal sources. Animal proteins are not a complete fiber and protein food; they do not contain significant amounts of fiber, only plant sources contain both.

Legumes, seeds and nuts are foods to look for containing both protein and fiber. Lentils are an excellent source of both fiber and protein – and may possibly be the best source for consuming both as a team. Beans such as chickpeas, peas, edamame (soybeans), kidney beans, black beans, and nearly all beans, are a very rich source of both fiber and protein. In addition to legumes, protein and fiber can be found in a variety of nuts and seeds. Grab almonds, cashews, flax seeds, chia seeds or pumpkin seeds to get both necessary ingredients in an easy to grab snack.

Leafy greens, such as kale, chard, spinach, cabbage and turnip greens, as well as almost all other leafy greens including mustard greens, romaine lettuce, dandelion greens, arugula, endive and bok choy, have a high amount of protein and fiber per calorie. While it is challenging sometimes to get enough leafy greens in one’s diet, making a green smoothie with leafy greens can be a very delectable way to get a high amount of this nutritious food. Just blend greens with water, bananas for creaminess, and fruit for a sweet flavor, to make a large portion of greens very palatable. Leafy greens can also be steamed or used in salads.

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