Do Vegetarians get all essential amino acids from their food

What are Amino Acids 

Amino Acids are simple organic compound which contain both a carboxyl (—COOH) and an amino (—NH2) group. These amino acids are building blocks of proteins and necessary in construction of our body cells, tissues and muscles. Our body can't exist in absence of amino acids. There are 20 different types of amino acids. All proteins are combinations of these amino acids.

What are essential Amino Acids

Some of the amino acids required for our body can be constructed by our body itself, but there are some amino acids which should be compulsorily a part of our diet. These amino acids which are necessary to be a part of balanced diet are known as Essential Amino Acids. There are nine essential amino acids which are histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine.

Do Vegetarians get all essential amino acids from their food ?
There is a misconception among non-vegetarians that vegetarians can't get all essential amino acids from their veg diet, so non-veg is mandatory for a healthy body. Different amino acids are part of different vegetables, grains, pulses and dairy products. If you are having a balanced vegetarian diet then most probably you are getting all essential amino acids. It is not necessary to get all essential amino acids in every diet or within a day. You may have some of then on one day and others on other day. Our body can utilize them whenever we eat them, so it doesn't matter if we don't eat a few of them for a few days in a week.

There is another misconception about proteins, that vegans don't get enough proteins in their diet. The truth is that an average vegan gets much more than recommended intake of proteins. While only 42g of protein are necessary for an average man on daily basis, non-vegetarians eat way more i.e around 80g, while vegetarians eat around 70g in a day. The truth is that our body also needs fiber in diet and vegans get the fiber in sufficient amount compared to non-vegetarians.

Lysine is an essential amino acid that vegetarians should care about. It is available in Pistachios, quinoa and legumes including tofu and tempeh. If you use to eat eggs in your vegetarian diet then most probably you won't face lack of any essential amino acid. But even if you don't eat eggs then a combination of vegetables, fruits and whole grains can provide you enough of them to live a healthy life.

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