Brendan Brazier Advise | Considerations When Selecting Protein Sources

brendan brazier sea weed 02 Brendan Brazier Advise | Considerations When Selecting Protein Sources

This weekend I’ve been attending the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) Expo West in Vancouver. It’s the largest health food trade show in Western Canada. I’ve been at the Vega booth, talking with Canadian health food store owners and visiting with friends.

As promised, here are some factors I take into account when selection protein sources. I used these principals when formulation Vega, but off course anyone can apply them.
By synergistically combining protein sources, I found that my ability to recover dramatically improved. Improved recovery is of course an indication that stress has been relived from the body. Amino acid levels vary in all protein sources. By synergistically selecting complementary sources and amounts, we can achieve what is referred to as a “flat line profile”. An indicator that all amino acids are being met in substantial quantities, the “flat line profile” of properly combined amino acids is indicative of a broad-spectrum source of protein.

Found predominantly in hemp, Edestin is an easily digestible form of protein. Beneficial for the structural integrity of our cell’s DNA, Edestin more closely resembles human protein than any other in the plant kingdom.

The branch chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine are prevalent in hemp protein. Essential for the repair and building of lean muscle tissue these, branch chain amino acids are also an integral part of maintaining a healthy metabolic rate.

Hemp protein by itself is complete, but there is still room for improvement. Relatively low in the essential amino acid tryptophan, hemp protein is nicely complemented by the addition of rice protein. Naturally prominent in rice protein, tryptophan helps the body fabricate serotonin. With more readily available serotonin in the system, mood will be elevated, resulting in fewer sugar and starch cravings.

Relatively hard to find in the plant kingdom, the amino acid lysine is exceptionally high in yellow pea protein. An essential amino acid, lysine is a critical factor in the production of enzymes, antibodies and hormones. The body’s ability to maintain correct nitrogen balance and absorb calcium is also reliant on the presence of lysine in the diet. During times of augmented stress, the maintenance of lean muscle tissue is assisted by the consumption of lysine rich foods.

Not only complete, this combination is complementary and synergistic, it’s structured better than any single protein source can ever be. As a direct result from the “flat line” amino acid profile, I noticed immediate gains in strength and lean muscle retention, even during times of elevated stress. The desire to consume more food dissipated as well, leaving me leaner.

After exercise my first priority is to get well hydrated. Once that’s done, I’ll eat easily digestible fruit (banana, mango, papaya, dates). Then, about 45min later I’ll make sure I get some high quality protein to help repair the muscle tissue damaged by exercise.

On Wednesday I’ll be off to Washington DC.I’ve been asked to speak at a congressional briefing on Capital Hill. I’ll present to members of congress and their key staffers in an effort to have healthier food (vegan) options readily available to the general public, including schools and hospitals. I’ll speak of the direct link that exists between health and diet as well as touch on the economic benefits that can be achieved by reducing dependants on our over-stretched healthcare system. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Thanks for being part of the G Living Network!

thrive diet books by brendan brazier Brendan Brazier Advise | Considerations When Selecting Protein Sources

  • jplumer

    Very informative Brendan thank you for the info. Does brown rice protein also complement hemp? I have trouble finding pea protein locally, but have found a reliable source of both hemp and brown rice protein.

    Keep up the great training and great information. I hope to read more posts and would be greatly interested if you are thinking of writing a new book.


  • Brendan

    Hi Jeff,

    Yes, the combination of hemp and rice protein is good. I used to combine those two with pea protein to make my blender drink, then I created VEGA that uses that combination. I’d be happy to have samples sent to you if you’d like. Just email your address to: and I’ll be sure they get to you.

    Also, if you eat a variety of legumes such as lentils, beans and peas, you will get benefit from their amino acid profile without eating pea protein specifically.

    I am writing another book that will be published in the spring of 2007. Details to come…


  • Shane

    Hey im 15 year old athlete who has recently became vegan (probably over 90%) since lent, and be4 that was vegetarian. So I’d say months of phasing them in.
    First of CONGRATS on winning the CAN ultra marathon champs!! I bet you would’ve done even better (obviously) you hadn’t been promo-ing vega, traveling, or injured in 2003. But don’t think bad about that cuz there always more time AND you’ve spread the good word about veganism!! You might not realize it but u’ve helped a lotta people out!
    Becomming vegan was easy, but being raw is a little difficult, and I’m way to used to eating raw that I extremely tell the difference, cooked/processed food feels like it doesn’t give me anything..and there awkard to digest. So yeah I don’t want to go back but I would like some help because I’ve read so many sites and everything about raw..that you only need 5-10% of calories comming from protein, the 80-10-10 diet, “Dr.” doug graham, frederic pataneau, etc….! So I want to end this confusion, by going back to source one of the main reasons of becoming vegan..You! Thats why I’m glad i stubbled across this site, cuz i can get real helP! Ok I have alloot on my mind, and i’ve learned alot..but its like midnight..and i just had a band concert so im gonna try to get to the point!
    Im SO confused know about so many contradictory ways, that i hate it! Be4 i just kinda did it my way..but research Always helps.
    Now I need to know if all that info is false about eating pounds and pounds of fruit, and then moderate vegetation. I don’t know if you’ve heard of those people ( well i know you have about Doug graham) but it doesn’t seem like they would get all requirements for b-12 and omega 3, on! I mean I finally got your book, which is amazing, and I have maca, chlorella (herbal select brand..tastes amazing..but maybe it doesn’t have chlorella growth factor..hmm)yerbe mate, micro aglae called E3LIve, I grind up flax, hemp, sesame. and so on! I’m paying attention to my diet but i don’t think im getting something…bcuz my calfs and lower thighs always hurt. But my upper body is fine..and im preetty darn sure i got enough grams of protein a day..maybe.. but i don’t know about balanced amino acids in my body. See theres another thing..i hear u have “protein pools” and ur body just combines amino’s you have gotten throughout the day, to make them complete. Therefore, you don’t need to combine at meals (of course it would help though..especially after a work out!) Anyways Im rambling..cuz I think I know a huge amount of info for my age, it may not seem like it but and my story might sound crappy so far, but i already tried “blogging u yesterday” but it didn’t send…when adding 3 and 3 is cleary 6..arrrg.
    Well basically i love all sports, short/long dist. running and everything in between!(I’ve been known for speed and endurance) hockey, skateboarding, track&field events (yeaah long jump{5.34m best} and 1500m!{got 4mins and something}) soccer, football, blahblah u don’t need my history cuz ur prolly already bored!
    I’ve noticed being a vegan having extreme energy and all other benefits, but I got a reoccuring hip injury from going to hard im guessing. and now ive had to miss hockey playoffs and track..and other things. I healed fast, but it could be just that im tryingto train to hard again…or i don’t eat enough fruit….or maybe the big deal is that I cut out legumes and lentils and stuff from hearing things from raw websites, but like u said in ur book they are no morea culprit than anything else. So maybe im not refabricating red blood cells, cuz this pain is unbarable! bUt i eat like a full serving of chlorrella and maca a day, and i eat hemp, pumpkin, raisins, currents, molasses, figs, dates and other things like spinach to get my calcium and iron (obviously i eat almonds for calicum)k…im a babler but i need help im in just a guest on this site. zI NEEED HELP OH MIGHTLY BRAZIER! im too young to die lol! I cut legumes cuz there in cans and were considerd cooked and stuff….but ive sprouted them and they taste..different(well i did once with yellow peas for lysine) WOah i think i just figured it out…u said u need lysine to absorb calcium !…so maybe im consuming enough calcium but im not assimulating it to my legs! aha! they feel like they not contracting..or maybe its sodium and nerve transmission or happening..naw. Its hard to explain..i don’t get spasms..but i feel pain and lseems like blood *trying* to pulse through my legs/veins. Anways i don’t think im defient in things..but im kinda wondering, and i don’t wanna eat mecca amounts of nuts…cuz that will just slow me down with too much fat (so i’ve read) I’m 5’8 and a bit and 140 lbs..or more i don’t know. Im leaner than last year, yet more defined. whatever..! help me out brazier ! im gonna buy some vega…cuz when i tried it the free sample packs from a health show after hockey and other activities as well as brought them along to my band trip to NYC and its amazing!!!! Vega will do the trick, and surely beat my nurient rich shakes. I PRAy this sends cuz i need help …peace out!

  • Daniella

    Shane, there are some raw sources of high Lysine foods. Pumpkin Seeds are really high and pistachios,they just have a lot of calories and fat. Sprouted Amaranth, Buckwheat, Oats, Wild Rice and Quinoa are all high in Lysine and much easier to digest then raw sprouted legumes, and also don’t have the toxins that a lot of raw legumes have. Amaranth and Quinoa are the highest. Pumpkin and chia are also high in tryptophan too. I agree though that Vega is Amazing. Much easier to get it all in one easy to digest drink.

  • Brendan

    Hi Shane,

    I know how you feel. I was in your situation when I was 15. I didn't have such easy access to information back then, in some cases I think that made it easier. Like you say, there are so many conflicting views. For me I found that having a blender drink packed with all things I mention in my book really helped, for others sometimes it will be something else that will need to be added as well.

    I do eat a lot of fruit, that's my main source of carbohydrate. However, since I'm not 100% raw (about 80%) I also eat whole grain rice a couple times a week and some times will have a sweet potato or two in a month. Sprouted bread with avocado, sea salt and some raw soaked lentils on top (and sometimes nutritional yeast) is also something I'll have a couple times a week.

    Your calf thing could be as simple as an electrolyte imbalance. I used to get that a lot when I drank too much water. I make sure to balance it out by eating seaweed, dulse is good. Celery and tomatoes are also good to help with this.

    Also, since there is so much information out there, I think sometimes the best thing to do is close your self off from it for a while. Let your body tell you when it's feeling good. Go simply by feel for a period of time. Have a goal of feeling the best you can and not eating a certain way, I found that's helped me in the past.

    I hope this helps,


  • Shane

    Wow thanks, that really relieved me! I extremely aprreciate you emailing me back and for the great help. I will just “play it out” for a while; it definately does help. Plus I’ve been adding a broader selection of protein and electrolyte sources now, and I’m feeling a lot more balanced and overall better. Thanks!
    I do however, have a few questions:
    Is there a good method for sprouting?
    Can Kidney beans be sprouted?
    Can Bulgar be sprouted? (doesn’t have to be cooked though!) and or does it have a high amount of tryptophan in it?
    When something doesn’t sprout (like long grain rice or anything else) does that mean its not not sure if thats the right word, but it just won’t simply sprout and you have to cook it.
    Do grains really contain phycic acid (something like that) that drains your body of calcium?
    and same thing with tea.. it inhibits absorbtion of certain vitamins when consumed with food. Not sure if I believe that, I mean I love Yerbe Mate and other teas!
    Whew, thats about it or if you have any tips, like good combinations of things (as mentioned from the guy above) that would be greatly aprreciated!And again sorry about the long email, I was a little worried and tired, I read it and I sound pretty idiotic! So so long, and good luck with things to come!

    P.S I’ve always wonder why you eat tofu in your Recovery Pudding, since its acidic..wouldn’t it not clear lactic acid? Ooh and do eat sprouted barley and wheat grasses for B-12? I’ve never heard you mention them be4.

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  • ON

    Thanks for your advices on cheap ptorein!

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