The Myth of Complementary Protein


Big thanks to my good brother Dušan B. who posted this piece to his FB wall.

Recently, I was teaching a nutrition class and describing the adequacy of plant-based diets to meet human nutritional needs. A woman raised her hand and stated, “I’ve read that because plant foods don’t contain all the essential amino acids that humans need, to be healthy we must either eat animal protein or combine certain plant foods with others in order to ensure that we get complete proteins.”

I was a little surprised to hear this, since this is one of the oldest myths related to vegetarianism and was disproved long ago. When I pointed this out, the woman identified herself as a medical resident and stated that her current textbook in human physiology states this and that in her classes, her professors have emphasized this point.

I was shocked. If myths like this abound not only in the general population but also in the medical community, how can anyone ever learn how to eat healthfully? It is important to correct this misinformation, because many people are afraid to follow healthful, plant-based, and/or total vegetarian (vegan) diets because they worry about “incomplete proteins” from plant sources.

via Forks Over Knives | The Myth of Complementary Protein.

 

2 comments

    1. I hear mixed things about the Paleo diet. I’ve known a few guys who used it, and while it helped them for a while, both of them ended up trading for more veggie centric diets. Do you do Paleo or have you done it?

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