Six high-protein plant-based foods eaten by the longest-lived people on the planet

  • Plant-based diets are common in the blue zone, where people live long and healthy lives.

  • As for protein, many blue zone dishes rely on carbohydrate-rich staple foods such as legumes and whole grains.

  • Nuts, including some fish, dairy products, and eggs, conclude a modest protein intake in a blue zone diet.

If you want to eat like the healthiest people on the planet, consider replacing the steak with a plate of beans and rice.

Eating a high-carbohydrate diet rich in vegetable protein is characteristic of the “blue zone,” the five places in the world where people live the longest and healthiest lives.

The so-called blue zone represents a variety of dishes such as Japanese, Greek, Italian and Costa Rican.Specific foods vary, but food groups such as beans, nuts, whole grains, herbs, and green vegetables Blue zone diet..

According to the author, anyone trying to mimic the blue zone diet pattern should aim to limit the intake of lean meat to about 95% of the diet with plant-based foods. Dan Buettner who popularized the blue zone diet.. Diets also tend to be low in fat, regardless of region, Plenty of carbohydrates..

However, there are other ways to get protein from your diet.

Dietitians usually recommend targeting half to three-quarters of protein per pound of body weight. For example, a 120-pound person weighs about 60-90 grams a day. Protein is an important nutrient to help tissue repair, Build muscle (but Blue zone residents often skip the gym).

To get enough protein in your blue zone diet, focus on nutritious sources like legumes and occasionally serve fish, dairy products, and eggs.

Legumes such as beans, peas and lentils


From lentils and chickpeas to black beans and red beans, a variety of legumes are incorporated into the world’s blue zone diets.Wulf Voss / EyeEm / Getty Images

Beans, along with fellow legumes, lentils, and peas, are the cornerstone of the blue zone diet.

They play a leading role in blue zone diets around the world, from Costa Rican black beans to Mediterranean lentils and chickpeas.

Soybeans are a popular source of protein in Japan and are processed into tofu to make soups and stir-fries, or steamed with edamame as edamame.

Buettner’s Blue Zone Diet Guidelines It is recommended to eat at least half of the beans daily.

In addition to protein, it is also packed with legumes Dietary fiber, an important nutrient in the blue zone diet..

Whole grains

Quinoa grains of various colors.

Grains can add protein to the diet along with dietary fiber and healthy carbohydrates.Westend61 / Getty Images

Grains are usually considered primarily a source of carbohydrates, but certain raw varieties can also add protein to the diet.

Whole wheat, buckwheat and couscous contain 5-6 grams of protein per cup.

Quinoa, an ancient grain born in South America, packs 8 grams of protein per cup.

Whole grains also contain essential amino acids, which, in combination with bean nutrients, Complete protein source..

Rice and bean-based dishes are a very common staple around the world, including the blue zone.

Nuts and seeds

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Nuts contain a lot of fiber and healthy fat, as well as some protein.Stephen Wellstead / Getty Images

Nuts and seeds are the basic snack foods in the blue zone, despite their poor reputation in the diet world for their high calorie density. Only a handful of packings up to 200 calories..

They are rich in nutrients like Omega 3 fatty acidsIt is associated with health benefits such as reduced inflammation and reduced risk of heart disease.

Nuts and seeds that contain the highest amount of protein per serving include:

  • Pumpkin seeds: 9 grams per ounce

  • Peanuts: 7 grams per ounce

  • almond: 6 grams per ounce

  • Cannabis seeds: 6 grams per ounce

  • linseed: 5 grams per ounce

Moderate fish

A fork that spears a grilled sardine from a plate of small fish, citrus and grains

Small fish such as anchovy and anchovy are popular in the blue zone.Elena Pezinova / Getty Images

Fish are a popular source of protein because many blue zones are close to the ocean.

Fish are not a daily staple, but appear about three times a week in moderate amounts of 3 ounces or less.

Small fish such as anchovy and anchovy, which are popular in the Mediterranean, Not exposed to toxins at the same rate as fish at the top of the food chainLike tuna.

Cod is another popular fish that is rich in mild flavor and protein and contains important minerals such as B vitamins and phosphorus.

From small amounts of dairy products, usually sheep and goats

A small ring of soft cheese cut into slices and spread on bread

Cheese and yogurt can be reasonably part of the blue zone diet, often from sauces such as sheep and goats.Half Dark / Getty Images

You may have been told to drink milk daily for your health, but dairy products are relatively rare in the blue zone diet.

Traditional cheese made from sheep and goat milk is used in some blue zone regions of Italy and Greece, as well as in other fermented products such as yogurt.

These low-sugar, high-protein options can be a healthy part of a moderate blue zone diet that is included several times a week.

Full-fat versions of dairy products are recommended because low-fat dairy products are often treated with more additives such as sugar to compensate for the flavor lost by reducing fat.


Two sunny side-up eggs on tortillas in black beans and red sauce.Huevos rancheros

On a blue zone diet, eggs are eaten 2-4 times a week.Karla Ferro / Getty Images

Eggs are a nutrient-rich, easily accessible source of protein6-7 grams of protein per serving, and B vitamins.

They are reasonably included in the blue zone diet and are eaten about 4-6 times a week as part of the minority of animal foods.

Eggs are usually introduced as a side dish in blue zone dishes, along with hearty botanical foods.

For example, in Costa Rica, fried eggs are served on top of corn tortillas and black beans. In Japan, boiled eggs are often included as part of a flavorful soup.

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