Pure Food High Protein Eating Plan

Plant-based High Protein Eating Plan

A science-based approach to eat cleaner, burn fat, and build lean muscle.

Table of Contents

Step 4:

Find Supplements That Actually Help You



Step 2:

Learn the Basics of Clean Eating


Step 5:

Discover How Much Protein is Optimal for Your Needs

Step 3:

Download Your Printable Clean Eating Grocery List


Step 6:

Choose a Protein Powder That’s Right for You



How Pure Food Can Help You Optimize Your Performance


Never before in history have we had access to such an abundance of information about how to improve our health as we do today.

Chances are you already have a solid foundation of knowledge about some of the topics we’re going to cover.

But I’m going to show you some things you probably didn’t know … and more importantly, how to actually apply these learnings to your life.

The purpose of this guide is to help you eat better. Because when you eat better, you look better, you feel better, and you perform better.

Cheers to you for investing your time in yourself. You’re already one step ahead of most folks.

Scott Christ

Founder, Pure Food

P.S. You can read more about my story here

P.P.S. If you have questions or comments feel free to email me anytime: Scott@purefoodcompany.com

Step 1:

A Better Way to Achieve Your Health Goals

To achieve your health goals, you need to have a plan.

May sound obvious but unfortunately, most people’s idea of a “plan” goes something like, “I want to lose some weight.” It’s no wonder every December 31, they’re disappointed.

I want to share a different goal setting process you can try. It’s based on proven principles of human psychology and behavioral science.

TIP: Heidi Grant Halvorson, Associate Director of Columbia University’s Motivation Science Center, says that when you embrace a “get better” approach to goal setting, you’re more likely to achieve those goals. For example, set goals like “I want to learn how to become great at strength training” rather than “I want to be stronger.” Or “I want to learn how to develop healthier habits” instead of “I want to be skinnier.” She recommends writing down goals and then rewriting them using words like improve, progress, develop, become and grow.

How It Works

1 Write your ideal vision of yourself 3 years from now

In 3 years, where do you envision yourself being health-wise? How do you want to look and feel? What conditions/pain/symptoms do you want to alleviate? What do you need to get better at?

2 Create a 12-week action plan.

What are 3-5 key actions you need to take in the next 12 weeks to help you achieve your 3-year vision? For example, your key actions might be:

  • Exercise 20+ minutes, 5 days per week
  • Average 7+ hours of sleep every night
  • Eat no more than 10 grams of added sugar each day (Tip: we have a clean eating grocery store checklist below that can help you with this!)

3 Create an action plan for tomorrow.

You’ll need a daily calendar or planner. I’ve used the Blue Sky, Freedom Mastery, and Phoenix planners (all available on Amazon) because I like writing things down, but Google or Apple Calendar work just fine too. What matters is putting on paper (or screen) the actions you’ll take each day.

Research shows that when you write something down or schedule it, you’re much more likely to achieve your goals

  • Run 3 miles
  • Create a healthy shopping list for the grocery store
  • Order a salad when I go out to dinner tonight
  • Eat at least 100 grams of protein


4 Repeat

Repeat the process daily, and continue to create a new action plan every 12 weeks. It doesn’t matter how small the step–as long as you’re moving forward and improving, that’s the important part. Enjoy the journey!

Step 2: Clean Eating Basics

The term “clean eating” has been the topic of much controversy among health experts.

One dietician in the British Medical Journal went as far to say,

This nonsense is all based on a loose interpretation of facts and a desire to make the pursuit of wellbeing an obsessive, full time occupation.”1

But the majority of health and wellness experts say there’s value in “clean eating” as an overall food philosophy.

So What Exactly Is “Clean Eating?”

Here’s one of the best definitions I’ve seen, courtesy of Mayo Clinic Registered Dietitian Emily Brown:

The fundamentals of eating clean encourage you to consume more plant-based, whole foods as close to their natural state as possible and limit highly processed snack foods, sweets and other packaged foods.2

The body of evidence that supports this way of eating to help you lose body fat, feel better, boost your immunity, and improve overall health outcomes is enormous.3,4,5,6

However, it should come as no surprise that clever food marketers have found ways to exploit the “all-natural” and “clean” claims, since the FDA doesn’t regulate use of these terms.

So How Do You Know What’s Clean and What’s Not?

Here’s a simple checklist you can use that’s grounded in science (see reference links to learn more about each):

clean eating plan

Organic ingredients you recognize as whole, real foods.7

low sugar diet

Little-to-no added sugar and no artificial sweeteners.8,9

are whole grains good or bad

Whole grains instead of refined grains. 10,11

high protein eating guide

No mystery ingredients like “flavors”, gums, & other mystery additives.12

if you don’t know what something is, don’t buy it until you research the safety of the ingredients.

I recommend credible sources that back their claims with peer-reviewed science (like the EWG, CSPI and Pubmed). In the next section, we’ll provide a handy list you can take with you to the grocery store …

Step 3:

Download Your Printable Clean Eating Grocery List

Step 4:

How to Find Supplements That Actually Work Using Simple Desk Research

There’s no shortage of dietary supplements these days that can (supposedly) help you achieve all your health goals and alleviate symptoms of every condition imaginable.

Unfortunately, most just don’t work.

There’s a simple way to find out if the ones you’re considering are effective though: do your homework.

“Look for studies published in credible medical journals. There are two free resources I recommend using when researching supplements online: PubMed and Examine.com.”

There’s no shortage of dietary supplements these days that can (supposedly) help you achieve all your health goals and alleviate symptoms of every condition imaginable.

In case you missed it, we put together an in-depth post on 17 of the best supplements that actually work. But for purposes of this guide, I wanted to focus on supplements that directly support body composition improvement:

  • “Body composition Pubmed”
  • “Fat loss supplements Pubmed”
  • “Build muscle supplements Pubmed”

benefits of creatine


Appears to have inherent lean mass building and power improvement properties.14-17

Beta-alanine research


Stimulates lean body mass and improves exercise performance.18-21

hmb body composition


HMB may be effective for helping you preserve lean body mass.22-25

Step 5: How Much Protein Is Optimal for You?

You probably know by now that low protein diets can lead to weight gain and increased fat mass.26

If you’ve determined that eating more protein is something that can help you achieve your health goals, now the question is, how much protein is the right amount for you?

How Much Protein Do

You Need Each Day?

Your daily protein requirements
depend on several factors:

1. How much muscle you currently have. The more muscular you are, the more amino acids your body needs to maintain your current body composition periods.

2. Your activity level.. The more you exercise, the more protein your body needs.27

3. Your age. The older you get, the more protein your body needs to maintain muscle.28

4. Your hormones. If your body has high levels of growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), it will use protein more efficiently than someone with low levels. These hormones decrease as you age, which is one of the reasons why older adults need more protein periods.

plant protein muscle gain

daily protein requirements

how much protein should you eat each day

The current recommendation for protein intake is 0.8 g/kg (or around 0.36 g/lb) of body mass in generally healthy adults.

However, this probably isn’t enough for most of you reading this. Here are updated recommendations, based on numerous clinical studies:29-30

Updated Protein Recommendations for 2020

If You’re: Aim For:
Healthy Weight & Sedentary 1.2–1.8 g/kg (0.54–0.82 g/lb)
Overweight or Obese 1.2–1.5 g/kg (0.54–0.68 g/lb)
Healthy Weight & Active & Wish to Keep Your Weight 1.4–2.2 g/kg (0.64–1.00 g/lb) *
Healthy Weight & Active & Wish to Build Muscle 1.4–3.3 g/kg (0.64–1.50 g/lb) **
Healthy Weight & Active & Wish to Lose Fat 2.2–3.3 g/kg (1.00-1.50 g/lb) ***
Pregnant 1.66–1.77 g/kg (0.75–0.80 g/lb)

* Try for the higher end of this range, as tolerated, especially if you’re an athlete.
** Eating more than 2.6 g/kg (1.18 g/lb) is probably not going to lead to greater muscle gains, but it can minimize fat gains when “bulking” — i.e., when eating above maintenance in order to gain (muscle) weight.
*** Skewing toward the higher end of this range as you become leaner or if you increase your caloric deficit (hypocaloric diet).

When should I take protein- before or after a workout?

If your goal is to lose body fat and increase lean body mass (muscle), then the answer is both.

In a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, researchers concluded that 0.4–0.5 g/kg of body weight at both pre- and post-exercise is a simple, relatively fail-safe general guideline.31

That’s 27-34 grams of protein both before and after a workout for a 150-pound adult.

Despite claims that you need to take protein immediately (within 1 hour) after a workout to maximize gains, evidence-based support for such an “anabolic window of opportunity” is far from definitive.31

Long story short, a 150-lb person should eat 27-34 grams of protein both before and after a workout if building muscle and/or losing body fat is a goal.

Next, we’ll explore some ways to make sure you’re getting enough protein.

Step 6:

Determine Which Protein Powder (If Any) Is Right for You

If you can get all your daily protein requirements from whole foods every day, that’s ideal.

As we’ve seen from clinical studies though, most people struggle to eat enough protein every day … and that’s when a good protein powder supplement can help.

However, like most supplements, the protein powder industry is ripe with products that contain questionable ingredients that could be doing your body more harm than good.

Protein powder manufacturers spend boatloads of money to convince you their products are “clean” and healthy.

Fortunately for you, there’s an easy way to cut through the noise and find out if a protein powder is actually good for you:

The nutrition facts panel and ingredient list are the only objective pieces of information you have to judge whether the ingredients in a protein powder are “clean” and “healthy” or not.

Here are 4 things to pay attention to:

1 Sugar Content and Type

Sugar is sugar. It all turns to fat in your body. So when you see any “Added Sugar” listed on the Nutrition Facts panel, this is a red flag.

TIP: Avoid all protein powders with more than 1 gram of sugar.

But chemical sugars like saccharin, aspartame, acesulfame potassium, and sucralose are definitely not a healthy alternative.

Then there are the so-called “all-natural” sweeteners:

  • Xylitol is a cheap, processed “sugar alcohol” that can cause serious gut imbalances.
  • Monk fruit (luo han guo) is a popular sweetener that’s actually a pretty clean option when used as a pure extract. But of course, supplement manufacturers use corn- and soy-based additives as fillers. Probably a good idea to check with your manufacturer and make sure it doesn’t have any of these ingredients if you have sensitivities.
  • Stevia. The stevia most protein companies use is chemically-derived and loaded with fillers. Organic stevia leaf extract is your best bet … problem is, most proteins have way too much (which can result in a nasty bitter aftertaste).

Bottom Line:

The best protein powders use organic, real food ingredients and all-natural (or no) sweeteners.

2 Gums, Flavors, and Other Additives

Here are a few ingredients you’ll find in most protein powders–and why you probably want to avoid them:

  • Natural flavors. Up to 90 percent of “natural” flavors have chemical solvents and preservatives, according to tests conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). Flavor compounds can contain hundreds of different ingredients and still be listed as “natural flavors” on the nutrition label! We recommend avoiding protein powders that have them.
  • Gums. Gums make protein powders easier to mix and blend … but certain gums have been shown in clinical studies to produce laxative effects, gas, and bloating. I recommend people with sensitive guts and GI issues avoid protein powders that have gums (carrageenan, guar, xanthan, locust bean, konjac, and acacia, to name a few).
  • Lecithins. The most common way to make lecithins involves using a petroleum-based neurotoxin called hexane. Avoid powders with this cheap soy- and sunflower-based filler.

3 Protein Types

Whey and casein are touted as the gold standard of protein powders. And for good reason: whey/casein have a lot of clinical evidence that support their ability to improve body composition.

However, dairy-based protein powders like whey and casein also can cause major side effects in people who are sensitive to cow’s milk (up to 65% of the population).

Plant-based protein blends made from organic peas, rice, hemp, sacha inchi, cranberry and pumpkin seed are a better choice if you’re trying to avoid dairy.

Also, if the ingredients in your protein powder (whether plant- or animal-based are not organic, chances are it’s sprayed with pesticides. So whether you choose a plant-based or animal protein like whey, pay a little more for organic if you want to avoid ingesting pesticides like glyphosate with your protein shake.

is whey protein bad for you

No Whey?

There is not a significant body of evidence to support whey protein as being more effective than plant-based protein sources.32 Plus whey may cause unpleasant side effects, particularly for those of you that are sensitive to dairy products (up to 65 percent of humans are!).33

4 Processing Methods

Here’s another big problem with how most whey and plant proteins are made: manufacturers use high heat, chemical-filled, acid-flushed processing methods, which destroys vital nutrients.

A small handful of protein manufacturers will disclose how they make their proteins (usually only the ones who don’t use these harsh manufacturing processes).

What whey protein processing looks like.

Plant Protein Powder Comparison Chart

If you decide a plant-based protein is right for you, we put together a comparison chart of 25+ plant protein powders (based on ingredients, nutrition facts, and price):

How Pure Food Can Help You Optimize Your Performance

Most other (whey and plant) protein powder brands have one or more of these inflammation-causing, fat-promoting, gut-disrupting ingredients: dairy, soy, corn, gluten, sugars, GMOs, fillers, or “flavors”.

Pure Food’s nutrition facts label/ingredient list are the cleanest and best in the industry.

Here’s proof …

Pure Food Vanilla Protein

Ingredients: Organic pea protein, organic brown rice protein, organic hemp protein, organic cacao, organic mesquite, organic vanilla, organic stevia leaf, GanedenBC30 (Bacillus coagulans) probiotic

Pure Food Cacao Protein

Ingredients: organic pea protein, organic brown rice protein, organic hemp protein, organic vanilla, organic lucuma, organic mesquite, organic stevia leaf, GanedenBC30 (Bacillus coagulans) probiotic


Here are just a handful of our 200+ 5-star reviews on Amazon:

I have been searching for a plant based protein powder that tastes great is clean and won’t kill my budget. I have tried many over the past 15 years including Shakeology, EAS etc. This is hands down the best protein powder I have ever used. I love the simple ingredients,great taste and the customer service. Thank you for creating an amazing product!

January 12, 2018


Best Protein Powder out there. Plant based. Clean. Simple ingredients. And most importantly tastes great! Excellent customer service. I use one scoop every morning in a smoothie – frozen strawberries, half banana, peanut butter, almond milk. Great start to the day!

February 10, 2018


Great Product, gives me the boost that I need and helps with Digestion. I add to my green smoothies.

March 10, 2018


If you’re here and reading this review, it’s NOT because you’re looking for a McDonald’s milkshake.
Like me, it’s because you’re looking for the purest, cleanest, best-macro-havin’ protein powder on all of Amazon. And friend, I think you just might have found it …

April 13, 2018



BONUS: Get Healthy Smoothie Recipes Catered to Your Health Goals

We’ve created 20 recipes with scientifically-proven ingredients designed to address five common health challenges.

4 Healthy Smoothie Recipes to Help You Improve Gut Health

4 Healthy Smoothie Recipes to Help You Build Muscle

4 Healthy Smoothie Recipes to Help You Lose Weight

4 Healthy Smoothie Recipes to Help You Increase Energy

4 Healthy Smoothie Recipes to Help You Boost Immunity