Where do vegetarians get their protein from?

According to the U.S. Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, “Vegetarian diets that include complementary mixtures of plant proteins can provide the same quality of protein as that from animal proteins.” We further read from the same source that, “Consuming a varied diet ensures an adequate intake of protein for vegetarians” and that, “Available evidence does not support recommending a separate protein requirement for vegetarians who consume complementary mixtures of plant proteins.”

According to experts on vegetarian diets at the American Dietetic Association “plant protein can meet protein requirements when a variety of plant foods is consumed and energy needs are met.” The authors of the guide entitled The Dietitian’s Guide to Vegetarian Diets included the following quotation about plant protein: “In general, protein should be an issue of little concern for vegetarians. Protein needs are easily met when the diet includes a variety of plant foods and calorie intake is adequate.” In the same book we read: “In fact, because of the high fat content of animal foods, on a caloric bases, many plant foods are actually higher in protein than animal products, such as regular ground beef and whole milk.”

As the above sources indicate, as long as vegetarians ingest adequate amount of foods from a variety of sources, they should have no problem with ingesting adequate quantity and quality of protein.