BalanceDiet At Home Coach Jill Arrington answers the frequently asked question of how to get more protein in your diet:
There is no lack of evidence via clinical trials that protein is quickly becoming the main focus of all good eating plans. Why is protein so important to our bodies? Well, protein affects many different aspects of our health and well being. Our hair and nails are composed mainly of protein. Protein also allows our bodies to build and repair tissue. Hormones and enzymes need protein for our bodies to make them. It is a macronutrient, which means the body needs a lot of it. Fats and carbohydrates are macronutrients as well but the body is able to store those macronutrients; it does not have the ability to store protein. So therefore, when your body needs it, it needs you to provide it!
Many people complain that trying to get enough protein is hard. This is especially true of vegetarians and vegans. The recommended intake of protein for the average teen, woman and man is a total of 6 ounces throughout the day, 7 ounces for very active individuals. The DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) is 0.8 grams of protein perkilogram of body weight, or 0.36 grams per pound (1). This amounts to (2, 3): 56 grams per day for the average sedentary man. 46 grams per day for the average sedentary woman. There are some pros and cons to a high-protein diet (one in which more than the recommended dosage of protein is consumed) and can include excessive calcium loss, constipation, and other health issues. However, benefits in weight loss have been noted in short term high-protein diets. Here are some ways to get your daily protein:
- Fish, shrimp, and lobster are great sources of lean protein, and turkey breast and pork loin are great alternatives to chicken breast. You can also eat beef and lamb if you enjoy more flavor.
- Egg Whites in the morning ( mix in one whole egg for the omega-3 benefits as well )
- Greek yogurt has a thick and creamy consistency, and it's action-packed with protein, you can add flavour with berries, nuts, honey, and vanilla
- You can do a lot more with protein powder than shake it up with some water or milk. Try using protein powder for baking! (Try our delicious 07 Lean Protein in vanilla or chocolate)
Jerky, nuts, or high-quality protein bars like our BalanceDiet Proti-Bars
- Hummus (you can make your own with our 5 Minute Homemade Hummus Recipe)
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Tuna-canned tuna is quick an easy or even adding a tuna steak to your favorite salad
- Quinoa is an excellent seed that is known for its high protein content, and with good reason. The seed (yes, it's technically a seed—not a grain) contains eight grams of protein per cup. Plus, it's considered a complete protein, meaning it packs all nine essential amino acids your body needs.
- Roasted Chickpeas make a great snack in place of chips or popcorn