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Protein: Too much or not enough?

December 2022 / by Cookhouse Hero

The science of weight loss can be quite complex. Yet, when I realized that a golden key is eating plants as close to their original form as Mother Nature and Father Time intended, I laughed out loud at the simplicity of this solution. Choose to stop dieting. Instead, eat foods today that you'll eat forever (ie WPF).


  • Real Food Recipes: One cup (128 grams) of delish edamame packs a punch of protein at 17g. LINK

  • In the News: Got Milk? campaigns failed to stop the wave of plant-based milk consumption. LINK

  • Feeding Families: Toni Okamoto of Plant-Based on a Budget offers low-cost meal plans. LINK


(protein deficiency is a racket... and we're the guinea pigs)

CH BLOG - December 2022 / © by Cookhouse Hero / Reading time: 3 minutes

First, some food-science factoids...

     Protein is one of three macro-nutrients with large complex molecules that play many critical roles in the body. They do most of the work in cells and are required for the regulation, function, and structure of the body’s tissues and organs. We need protein but… the type and amount of protein (as a percentage of daily calories) has been presented in a manipulative way by marketing campaigns. Turns out, we're eating way too much protein. Clinical studies have shown that high protein consumption is contributing to liver cancer, as well as places too much stress on our bones, kidney, and heart. Actually, we need about 5% - 12% protein daily to maintain a healthy body, depending on age, lifestyle, fitness, etc. This number is a bit higher for athletes. Currently, the average American is consuming about 15%-35% or more per day. Clearly, studies continue to show that animal protein and casein - the protein in mammal's milk - are two primary causes of heart disease and chronic ailments such as prostate and breast cancer. The good news? There's an abundance of plant-based proteins available: beans, lentils, intact grains, raw nuts, raw seeds, and EVERY plant on the planet.

Broccoli has more protein per calorie than a steak. Spinach has about the same amount of protein per calorie as chicken and fish. Every plant on the planet has protein. Even celery.

Kwashiorkor is the medical term for protein deficiency. Never heard of it? No surprise there.

     The fact that doctors don't know what kwashiorkor is speaks volumes. The false protein-deficiency marketing campaigns began just after World War II, when military surplus foods were sold off and attached with a fear-based message about eating enough protein. Dairy products (powdered milk etc) were also surplus goods, so the protein in diary was hawked as well. This illustrates one more instance when a government entity marries a business entity and voila! a new partnership is formed. Unfortunately for us guinea pigs, some of these partnerships have proven to be detrimental to our health. The reality is that protein deficiency is pure disinformation, fueled by one goal: to earn higher dividends for stockholders. Human health is not in the picture, while everyone at the top wins. Over the decades, this fear-based message has sunk into people's minds and has lead to unwise and harmful food choices.


The most vulnerable are athletes, who are fed falsehoods about animal protein and powders.

     Protein deficiency and "disease-mongering" focused on athletes are subjects that deserve much more scrutiny. There's an abundance of evidence-based clinical research focused on the benefits of plant-protein and plant-nutrition in general, particularly regarding athletic performance and faster recovery times. So, who and what is behind the false information campaigns? This is a complicated subject but in a nutshell: it's supported by Big Food, Beverage, Marketing, Medicine, Education, Public Policy, Agriculture, Law, etc who have a vested interest in 1) keeping people sick and 2) keeping people disinformed. I can hear the thoughts out there: But companies wouldn't do that on purpose, right? But there are truth in advertising laws that combat this, right? But (so-called) clinical researchers wouldn't deceive the public about protein deficiency, right? It's time to turn off the volume of misreporting and put it to bed. Athletes are the most vulnerable consumers because yes, they need more protein. Some are fed lies about being a "real man" and eating animals, about being a real athlete and drinking protein powders, about being a real competitor and consuming dangerous doses of animal protein. This form of group-dynamics and group-think is a powerful force. And, it's potentially dangerous. 

“Being vegan doesn’t make you a stronger, better athlete. But it allows you to 

make yourself a stronger, better athlete.”     

- Brenden Brazier, Canadian Ironman Athlete


What to do?

     First, accept that kwashiorkor exists only in malnourished populations who don't get enough daily calories. Accept that doctors don't know what this is (and most aren't being taught about protein in medical schools). And accept that twisted marketing campaigns are powerful forces that feed upon our brain bio-feedback. This is called neuromarketing, which began to contrive human behavior from the 90's. Second, get food educated in regards to plant foods that will easily reach your 5% - 12% daily protein intake. Again, whole intact grains, legumes family, raw nuts and raw seeds, and every plant on the planet has protein. And third, understand that protein is and will continue to be the most warped topic in the food education universe. Selling protein deficiency has been a successful smoke-and-mirrors endeavor, while us humans continue to get sick (and die) from animal and dairy protein. The truth is: rampant protein deficiency is a blatant lie.

Click on the links below to learn more about the benefits of plants for fitness, health, and longevity!

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