While protein is essential to growth, building muscle, the immune system and heart and respiratory functions, MSNBC explains, meat-free protein has the benefit of generally being lower in calories and fat than the animal variety.
Consider steak. A 3-ounce serving will give you about 23 grams of protein, but that protein comes with a side of 14 grams of fat and 224 calories. And keep in mind that three ounces of steak is about the size of a deck of cards. When’s the last time you saw a restaurant stick to that portion size? The typical American diet makes it easy to eat heavy on the protein while consuming extra fat and calories your body doesn’t need.