Parenting Food and Nutrition

How to Get Proteins from Vegetarian Diet?

Huda Shaikh
3 to 7 years

Created by Huda Shaikh
Updated on Mar 24, 2021

How to Get Proteins from Vegetarian Diet
Reviewed by Expert panel

Protein! Protein! And loads of protein!. Why do you think I am trying to emphasize so much on the macronutrient protein? The reason is proteins are an imperative part of the daily diet. From a bowl of dal till curd, the list of protein-rich foods seems to be endless. But before we move on to why proteins are important for your little one.

Proteins -- the building blocks -- are one of the essential foods that your child requires for healthy growth. But how do you get that daily requirement of proteins from your vegetarian diet? Our nutritionist Huda Shaikh shares some foods rich in proteins for vegetarians.

What are Proteins?

Proteins are large complex molecules which are necessary for various bodily functions. The interesting part is that proteins are made up of hundreds and thousands of amino acids which are attached to each other in the form of long chains. What’s more? There are 20 different amino acids which can be combined together to form proteins. Proteins are required for the proper functioning of cells and also for structure, function, and regulation of the body’s tissues and organs.

Why Does Your Child Require Protein?

Proteins as stated as required for various bodily functions. Here is why proteins must be an important component of your child’s diet.

  • Proteins are required for wear and tear of muscles
  • Proteins are extremely important for skin, hair, and nails. For if you want your child to have a healthy looking skin, shiny hair and strengthened nails then protein needs to be added in the diet for sure
  • Proteins are required for the formation of antibodies and the help on the proper functioning of the enzyme system. In fact, proteins are required for the production of enzymes
  • Proteins maintain the proper fluid and acid-base balance
  • Proteins facilitate in proper wound healing since your child would run around and hurt himself someday or the other, it’s imperative that protein is given in good quantities to your little one.



How Can A Vegetarian Get The Required Amounts Of Protein-Food Groups?

This is a much talked about topic almost everywhere. Since if you are a vegetarian people think that you cannot get enough protein and you might end up becoming protein deficiency. However, that is clearly not the truth. If you take a closer look at the food groups which we have there are plenty of options for vegetarians too. Here are the foods which you need to consume or give your little one if you belong to a vegetarian family.

The Five Food Groups

So basically the food we eat is divided into 5 food groups.

  • Dairy
  • Fruit
  • Grain
  • Meat, poultry, and other protein-containing foods
  • Vegetables, legumes, and beans

Now if you take a closer look maximum protein would come from almost 4 foods group, dairy, meat poultry, and other protein-containing foods and legumes and beans.

What Are The Best Sources Of Proteins For Vegetarians?

According to the food group here are the best sources of proteins for vegetarians.

  • Pulses
  • Milk
  • Paneer
  • Tofu
  • Curd/Yogurt
  • Soya
  • Nuts (almonds, walnuts, cashew, peanuts)
  • Seeds (chia seeds, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds)
  • Nut butter (almond butter, peanut butter, cashew butter)
  • Brown rice
  • Have some Quinoa recipes
  • Green peas
  • Amaranth
  • Sorghum
  • Broccoli
  • Oats
  • Soymilk
  • Almond milk


What Should Be The Daily Requirement Of Protein For Children?

There needs to be a specific protein requirement set in for girls and boys.

However, children aged 9-13 years require about 34gms of protein/day.

The recommended dietary allowance for boys aged 14-18years of age is 52gms and the dietary allowance for girls aged 14-18years is 46gms respectively.

Is There A Difference In The Protein Requirement Of Girls And Boys?

Till the age of 13 years, the protein requirement of girls and boys remains somewhat similar. However, with the onset of puberty, there is a change in the body structure of girls and boys which is why boys are physically bigger and have more lean muscles as compared to girls. Hence at this stage the requirement of proteins for boys increases.


Did you like the blog on how to get proteins from your vegetarian diet? Please share your views and feedback in the comments section below.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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| Nov 01, 2017

thanks Ma'am for sharing rich sources of protein in a vegetarian diet.. I always used to think being a vegetarian family we would always have to take supplements to meet our daily protein requirements. thanks again!!

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| Nov 04, 2017

thanks alot

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| Nov 10, 2017

Hi Shikha,Most welcome :) There are loads of sources for vegetarians too,not to worry.

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| Mar 05, 2019


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| Mar 05, 2019

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| Mar 05, 2019

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| May 08, 2019

mam its very nice info for proteins intake

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| Aug 31, 2019

It's very good info. Thanks a lot. I have a question though. I've come across many sites like www. newdiet4health. org/ which claim that raw vegan food is much beneficial for human health. I've seen too many people/sites claim the same. How much of that is true? Please respond whenever possible.

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