Two of the most common questions we are asked are: "Where do you get your protein?" and "What about calcium?" It is evident that most people think protein and calcium need to come from meat and dairy products to be complete. This simply is not so. Formerly, vegetable proteins were classified as second class, but this distinction has now been generally discarded. Why? Because vegetables carry the sub-cellular units (microzymas) and the amino acids to make proteins. Also, all green vegetables are high in calcium. From observing some of the strongest animals in the world, who mostly graze on grasses, we see that they are getting plenty of protein and calcium. Whenever we are asked where we get our protein and calcium, we reply, "Where does the cow get hers?"
We have to evaluate just how much protein we really need. Again, our bodies break down to 70 percent water, 1-2 percent vitamins and minerals, 0.5-1 percent sugar, 20 percent fat, and 7 percent protein. Human mother's milk is only 5 percent protein, or some sources state as little as 1.4-2.2 percent. A newborn's growth demand is to double or triple body mass and size within the first year of life. One would think, if protein were needed in such high quantity for good growth and health, that mother's milk would contain a much higher percentage, but it doesn't!
The high-protein approach to nutrition was initially based on 19th century German research which said that humans needed a minimum of 120 grams of protein per day. Conventional nutritionists dropped this to 60 to 90 grams a day, and more recently, expert research suggests closer to 25 grams a day. Consider the following clinical study reported in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association. This study compared the essential amino acids in the diets of meat-eaters, lacto-ovo vegetarians (those who eat dairy and eggs), and pure vegan vegetarians. The study uncompromisingly set the protein requirements for each amino acid at the level that would easily cover the needs of growing children and pregnant women. The results? Not only did ALL three diets provide sufficient protein, they were all WELL ABOVE sufficient, each diet exceeding twice its requirement! !
Another U.S. journal reported the following: The average American meat-eater consumes one-and-a half to four times more protein than is really needed.
According to many scientists, this is the main reason for osteoporosis, the bone-weakening disease that strikes 45,000 American women each year. When you eat too many acidic meat and dairy proteins, your blood tries to return to its alkaline state the only way it can-by withdrawing calcium from your bones. The irony is that even if you're eating plenty of calcium-rich foods, you can have a negative calcium balance and an increased risk of osteoporosis! Your kidneys also rob your bones in order to eliminate the excess nitrogen found in animal protein. This research should lead us to stop worrying about getting enough protein and raise the concern about whether we are actually getting too much.
There is also a correlation between cancer and high-protein intake. From Dr. T. Colin Campbell, director of the Division of Nutritional Sciences at Cornell University and former senior science advisor to the American Institute for Cancer Research, we read the following:
There is a strong correlation between dietary protein intake and cancer of the breast, prostate, pancreas, and colon. The culprit in many of the most prevalent and deadly diseases of our time, according to this study, is none other than the very thing many of us have been taught to hold virtually sacred-animal protein. People who derive 70% of their protein from animal products have major health difficulties compared to people who derive just S% of their protein from animal sources. They have 17 times the death rate from heart disease and the women are S times more likely to die of breast cancer. In conclusion, animal protein is at the core of many chronic diseases.
Most meats are 20-25 percent protein. Eating meat can give us protein; however, along with this protein comes saturated fat and possible synthetic hormones, steroids and antibiotics that have been given to the animal. Also, pesticide chemicals can be in the meat from the grain fed to the animal. Along with all of this, morbid pathogenic bacteria loads from the fermentation of acids can be present in the animal tissues, before or at the time of slaughter. You don't need to go out and buy everything on this list at once. Get a few items from each category. Let it be an adventuresome journey to create a kitchen with alkalizing food choices for you and your loved ones!