Incomplete Protein-Vegetarian Approach

William Smith is the President / CEO and Founder of the INTRAFITT Corporation which was established in California in 1992. Will has won more than twenty-eight bodybuilding championships and is also known for his role as “THUNDER” on television’s American Gladiator between 1990 – 1992. He is a National and International Speaker on Performance Nutrition and Exercise Science.

Picking up where we left off on incomplete proteins, consider the conventional vegetarian approach which requires the combining of two or more incomplete proteins in order to acquire the necessary essential amino acids needed to achieve a complete protein, such as rice and beans.  Lets assume that a vegetarian has dietary recommendations consisting of approximately three hundred and fifty calories, twenty grams of complete protein, eight grams of fat and forty-eight grams of carbohydrates at each of four meals throughout the day. Ffirst of all in order to obtain twenty grams of complete protein he/she will have to combine foods such as grains, seeds, nuts, vegetables and legumes.  If rice and beans happened to be his/her choice, what would be the proper ration of rice and beans necessary to provide a biologically acceptable amino acid profile and that would be properly  assimilated within his/her body?  Additionally, how much extra protein would need to be ingested due to the B.V. (biological value) and/or N.P.U. (net protein utilization) associated with these two foods?

1.5 oz rice                 = 150 CALS = 3 g Protein = 33 g Carbs and 0 fat
1.5 oz black beans = 146 CALS = 10g Protein= 26 g Carbs and 0 fat

It appears as though it may be difficult to comply with the above suggested parameters given the fact that in order to obtain twenty grams of complete protein at each meal, the individual would most likely exceed the recommended calorie guidelines.  Additionally a fat rich food source such as olive oil may need to be added in order to achieve the recommended fat intake.  This in itself would significantly increase the total calorie content of the meal well over the recommended guidelines.  The final concern with this dietary approach relates to the carbohydrate ratio of the meal, which appears to be disproportionately high.  As previously discussed, carbohydrates have the most significant effect on blood sugar and the insulin response.  A meal such as this may promote an unfavorable hormonal response due to the inadequacy of dietary fats and available high quality complete protein.

In health and honor,
William “Billy” Smith, Thunder of the American Gladiators

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