Vegetarian sweet snacks with a boost of protein
More and more people are turning to plants for their protein. Three major reasons are driving this trend.
The first is the concern for the environment. In particular, environmental worries revolve around methane emission in the form of bovine belches.
The second is the growing awareness that animal welfare is being compromised in meat production facilities known as Confined Feeding Operations, or CFOs, where cows are raised in harsh enclosures sheerly for their meat with no consideration for their wellbeing.
The third is personal health reasons. Starting with the famously extensive China study, a growing body of research points to adverse long-term effects of meat consumption. Some vegetarians and vegans claim that meat, though nutritious, might even be carcinogenic.
Thus, plant-based protein is becoming a wide-spread phenomenon, and a subset of this trend is the booming of vegetarian sweet snacks that provide a boost of protein.
Protein is particularly important for resistance trainers and athletes, and for people who are on protein-rich diets. The last group tends to opt for protein- and fat-rich foods, such in the ketogenic (keto) diet, but some try to source those foods from plant.
Good sources of plant-based proteins are legumes and unrefined grains; good sources of fats are nuts and avocados.
In order to sustain a plant-based protein-rich diet even while snacking, a growing demand is seen for vegetarian sweet snacks with a boost of protein.
This article surveys the various options available for vegetarians and vegans, how to keep up with a high-protein diet when meat is not an option, and where to turn to when seeking high protein vegan snacks.
Keep up with a high-protein diet
Resistance trainers and athletes always look for diversified sources of high-quality protein. In the past this used to be challenging for vegan and vegetarian sportspersons. However, with growing innovation in alternative protein, the food industry has developed a plethora of plant-based protein options, imitating meat in all its forms.
Traditionally, to obtain plant-based protein that included all essential amino acids, vegan athletes had to turn to rice and beans, which combine to create a complete protein source that is familiar in Latin American dishes.
Pescatarians have benefited from access to a wide variety of marine foods—from various fishes to different crustaceans. However, the increased pollution in global oceans has meant that this food group has had to be consumed in diminishing quantities. Doctors go as far as completely banning fish like tuna from the diet of pregnant women because of the relatively high content of mercury in the fat cells of these fish.
Other sources of protein include grains and legumes.
Grains are often processed to exclude the nutritious, fiber-rich bran—the outer layer of the kernel. Vegans who turn to grains have to stay alert and informed, and purchase only unprocessed wheat products.
Wheat can also be allergenic, and allergies of this kind sometimes go undetected for years as they cause minor, little-noticed harm, like slight intestinal damage, or light allergic reactions that are attributed to other causes or go overlooked.
Legumes are a good source of both protein and soluble fiber, which helps clear blood vessels of harmful fats and is thus heart-protective. For some, legumes may cause bloating. As with grains and nuts, the nutritional value of legumes can be boosted by soaking them, which deactivates phytic acids and allows for more of their nutrients to be absorbed by the body.
Keeping up with a high protein diet beyond grains and legumes is facilitated by the consumption of nuts. The most nutritious nuts are walnuts and almonds, which boast the highest ratios of important omega-3s to other oils.
Since healthy fats are important and vegan diets tend to be low in fats, nuts make for a very important source for vegans of both fats and protein. Their fat content contributes to an appealing crunchy, rich mouthfeel, making nuts the ingredient of choice for many vegan snack makers, particularly those who aim to produce raw, unprocessed high protein vegetarian snacks.
Raw, unprocessed protein
Since both grains and legumes require some form of cooking, the primary food group providing protein for raw foodists is nuts.
Nuts make for an excellent source of raw, unprocessed protein that is also rich in Omega-3 oil and other good nutrients. Thus, nuts make for high protein vegan snacks in and of themselves, or as primary ingredients in such snacks.
Fruits and vegetables provide many vital micronutrients and fiber, but on the whole they are poor in protein.
Try These vegan desserts & snacks
When choosing high protein vegan snacks several criteria are important:
The taste and mouthfeel;
The nutritional values;
Whether the snack is organic or not;
Whether the constituent nuts and seeds (which are often the main ingredients when they are an ingredient) have been sprouted/soaked;
and whether refined sugars have been added.
On all these criteria, the high protein vegetarian snacks made by Plantraw™ rank high. We are referring of course to our Raw Crisps™ crackers.
Raw Crisps™ undergo dehydration (not baking) which maintains their nutritional values and produces an excellent crunch and mouthfeel; they are 100% organic, so customers are not exposed to any pesticide residues; the constituent nuts and seeds undergo sprouting—the soaking process which initiate biochemical internal binding, deactivating phytic acid; and no sugar is added to them. Our Raw Crisps™ crackers have a hint of sweetness which comes from dates. But like all sweet fruits, dates come with fiber and beneficial micronutrients, and their absorption is slow, which reduces or eliminates sugar spike during digestion. And Raw Crisps™ are rich in Omega 3s, fiber, and plant-based protein, including all essential amino acids.
To conclude then, the cleanest, most nutritious high protein vegan snack one can opt for is the Raw Crisps™ cracker from Plantraw™.