- When it comes to losing weight, protein is the king of nutrients.
- Adding protein to your diet is the simplest, most effective and most delicious way to lose weight with minimal effort.
- Studies show that protein both increases your metabolic rate and helps reduce appetite.
- Because protein requires energy to metabolise, a high protein diet can increase calories burned by up to 80 to 100 calories per day
- Protein is also the most fulfilling nutrient, by far. In other words, you can easily increase calories out and reduce calories in… just by adding protein to your diet.
- Protein can also help fight cravings, which is everyone's worst enemy.
- In one study, 25% of calories as protein reduced obsessive thoughts about food by 60% and cut the desire for late-night snacking by 50%
- If you want to lose weight, sustainably, with minimal effort, then consider making a permanent increase in your protein intake, not only will it help you lose, it will also prevent or at least significantly reduce weight regain.
- For more details, see the bottom of this post
- Bottom Line: Increasing protein intake can boost metabolism, fight cravings and significantly reduce appetite. This can lead to automatic weight loss.
SOURCES OF PROTEIN
Some sources of dietary protein include:
lean meat, poultry and fish
dairy products like milk, yoghurt and cheese
seeds and nuts
beans and legumes (such as lentils and chickpeas)
soy products like tofu, some grain and cereal-based products are also sources of protein, but are generally not as high in protein as meat and meat alternative products.
The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend particular serves per day from the lean meat and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans food category, including:
men aged 19-50 years = 3 serves
men aged 51 years and over = 2 ½ serves
women aged 19-50 years = 2½ serves
women aged 51 years and over = 2 serves
pregnant women = 3 ½ serves
breastfeeding women = 2 ½ serves.
A standard serving size is one of:
65 g cooked lean meats such as beef, lamb, veal, pork, goat or kangaroo (about 90-100 g raw)
80 g cooked lean poultry such as chicken or turkey (100 g raw)
100 g cooked fish fillet (about 115 g raw weight) or one small can of fish
2 large eggs
1 cup (150 g) cooked dried beans, lentils, chickpeas, split peas or canned beans (preferably with no added salt)
170 g tofu
30 g nuts, seeds, peanut or almond butter or tahini or other nut or seed paste (no added salt).
The daily recommendations for adults for foods from the milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives (mostly reduced fat) group are:
men aged 19-70 years = 2 ½ serves
menu aged 70 years and over = 3 ½ serves
women aged 19-50 years = 2 ½ serves
women aged 51 years and over = 4 serves.
A serve could include either:
250 ml (1 cup) fresh, UHT long life, reconstituted powdered milk or buttermilk
120 ml (1/2 cup) evaporated milk
200 g (3/4 cup or 1 small carton) yoghurt
40 g (2 slices) hard cheese such as cheddar
120 g (1/2 cup) ricotta cheese.
YOUR PROTEIN NEEDS
The amount of protein you need in your diet depends on your weight, age and health. As a rough guide, the recommended dietary intake (RDI) for protein (measured in grams per kilogram of bodyweight) is:
0.75 g/kg for adult women
0.84 g/kg for adult men
Around 1 g/kg for pregnant and breastfeeding women, and for men and women over 70 years.
For example, a 75 kg adult male would need 63 g of protein per day. It is recommended that 15 to 25 per cent of total energy intake per day is from protein sources. The human body can’t store protein and will excrete any excess. Therefore, the most effective way of using the daily protein requirement is to eat small amounts at every meal. Using the example of the 75 kg male above, this would require that he eats approximately 21 g of protein at three meals each day.
The needs of children and adolescents also vary according to their age and weight. A full list of recommendations for dietary protein is available from the Australian Nutrient Reference Values (NRVs) website.
Here's the thing - going off the recommended Australian Dietary Guidelines I should eat around 40g of protein for the day and I know that is definitely not enough for me. I actually eat around 120g of protein every day, but keep in mind I'm actively trying to build muscle while stripping body fat and I workout 6 days a week. Everbody is different and you should look at how much physical activity you do in relation to how much protein you should be eating. For a customised Meal Plan email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me help you find your macros balance which will ultimately help you reach your goals.