I'm vegetarian and have been hearing that in addition to protein synthesis being more difficult for us, some amino-acids may be more difficult to acquire. Does anyone know of which vegetables have those aminos or know of a good source?

  • This question is off topic now, since the FAQ has changed.
    – Baarn
    Commented Oct 21, 2012 at 23:10
  • I'm not opposed to the change, but what specifically about the FAQ makes this off topic?
    – somehume
    Commented Oct 23, 2012 at 15:11
  • Basically all questions unrelated to exercise or physical appearance are off topic now, this specific one would fall under "nutrition unrelated to exercise" I guess.
    – Baarn
    Commented Oct 23, 2012 at 15:39
  • Yes, it's a nutrition question unrelated to exercise or a specific exercise routine, which makes it off topic. It wasn't off topic when it was asked a year ago, though, so it's not like the OP did anything wrong.
    – tmesser
    Commented Oct 23, 2012 at 21:33

2 Answers 2


Many plant foods have all the essential amino acids, but the ratios may be far-off of what your body needs, meaning you'd have to eat a huge amount in order to get an adequate dose of the rarer amino acids.

Look at this answer which examines the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score (PDCAAS) demonstrating not only which foods are complete, but how well they correlate to our dietary needs when taking into account digestibility and ratios. As a quick summary, soy has a very good ratio, followed by chickpeas, fruits, vegetables, and legumes. Grains aren't so good.


The following vegetables give you a complete essential amino acid profile.

Quinoa - can be eaten like rice.


Soybean - as tofu, milk, miso

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Spirulina - great as a sweat drink








  • 2
    References > pictures. Commented Apr 11, 2011 at 14:56

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