We all know how important it is to consume a healthy diet. So that means eating meals that are high in nutritional value.
First on this list should be foods high in protein.
Proteins are essential for building, maintaining, and replacing tissue. Therefore, it’s a crucial element in your body’s organs, muscles, and immune system.
But protein-rich diets can help people lose weight and feel fuller after every meal. This prevents them from overeating. Moreover, a high protein diet can help build more lean muscle. When combined with exercise, you can burn more calories.
Studies show that eating a high-protein diet can help you burn up to 80–100 more calories per day. So increasing protein intake to 25% of daily calories can cut cravings by 60%.
However, the key to a balanced diet is knowing how to incorporate different foods into your daily diet.
A recent blog in Medical News Today lists a variety of foods you should eat to stay healthy.
The following are some high-protein foods that you should eat to lose weight.
Beans and Legumes
Beans and legumes are inexpensive sources of protein beneficial for weight loss. There is a huge list to choose from, ranging from lentils, black beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, and much more.
Additionally, they are versatile ingredients. That means you can incorporate them into your diet as salads, snacks, or the main course.
People who want to lose weight eat beans and legumes because they are high in protein and fiber. Both these nutrients lead to satiety, keeping a person feeling fuller for longer. And because they are low-calorie foods, you can eat more of them without worrying about gaining weight.
One common issue with beans and legumes is that a lot of people cannot tolerate them. However, if prepared properly, you can enjoy the health benefits they have to offer.
Avocados are the perfect addition to your salads. This unique fruit is high in protein, fiber, and nutrients, such as potassium. Avocados also have high amounts of monounsaturated oleic acid, the same fat found in olive oil.
Since they contain a good amount of unsaturated fat and are calorie-dense, you need to control your portions.
Yellow corn offers about 15.6 grams of protein per cup. So it’s a great ingredient that you can add to your salad and snacks. What’s more, corn is a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, such as calcium.
The protein content in corn depends on the variety. But generally, corn is also high in starch and can spike blood sugar. If eaten in excess, it may actually prevent weight loss.
Seafood and Fish
Seafood and fish offer significant amounts of iodine. It’s an essential nutrient that helps your thyroid functioning properly. Thyroid function is important for keeping body metabolism running optimally.
Some items may not be as budget-friendly as some other protein options when it comes to seafood and fish. But there is a big selection you can choose from.
Tuna is a widely available source of protein that you can easily find. Many people prefer this fish because it has minimal fat and a low-calorie count. Moreover, it’s a versatile ingredient. So tuna can be easily added to salads, sandwiches, and snacks. However, you need to watch out for the unwanted calories found in dressings, such as mayonnaise.
Salmon is a good source of high-quality protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and various vital nutrients.
Halibut offers about 30 grams of lean protein in half a fillet. So it’s incredibly healthy and very satisfying, keeping you full for hours with relatively few calories.
Like fish, shrimp is high in omega-3 fatty acids. They’re low in calories but high in various nutrients, such as selenium and vitamin B12. An 85-gram serving contains 20 grams of protein and only 84 calories. So don’t skip on the shrimp!
Dairy products are often a good source of protein. One of your best options is cottage cheese. It primarily consists of protein and has very few carbs and little fat.
It’s high in phosphorus, selenium, vitamin B12, riboflavin (vitamin B2), and other nutrients. Moreover, cottage cheese is also high in calcium, which is a crucial nutrient that aids fat burning.
Lean dairy products, such as cottage cheese, are a great way to get more protein and nutrients into your diet without significantly increasing your calorie intake. A cup of low fat cottage cheese with 1% fat offers 28 grams of protein- and only 163 calories.
Eggs are among the healthiest, most nutritious foods you can eat. They’re an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and nutrients that your body needs.
Eggs, in general, are high in nutrition. Eating one large egg offers you 6 grams of protein. The whites are full of protein while the yolk is where you’ll find tons of vitamins A, D, and E.
More importantly, eggs keep you feeling fuller for longer. One study found that women who ate eggs for breakfast instead of bagels felt fuller for longer and ate fewer calories throughout the day.
Red meat Beef typically offers high amounts of protein per serving. Moreover, it has large amounts of other vital nutrients, such as iron and vitamin B12.
Replacing some carbs in your diet with a portion of lean beef could make it easier for you to lose excess weight.
Furthermore, when picking out beef, opt for grass-fed, not grain-fed. This is because grain-fed beef can increase inflammation due to the omega-6 fatty acids in them. This can lead to more belly fat– the exact opposite of what you’re going for.
The key is to avoid processed meat. Studies show that unprocessed red meat is unhealthy, raising the risk of other health issues such as heart disease, cancer, or diabetes.
Chicken breast is another popular source of lean protein. When eaten without the skin, most of its calories come from protein. One roasted chicken breast without skin contains 53 grams of protein and has only 284 calories.
Chicken is an excellent source of protein, which is essential for muscle strength. It allows your body to function properly during physical activity and exercise.
One of the best things about chicken breast is that it’s very easy to cook and versatile. It tastes delicious in a variety of dishes. So grill, broil, or roast your chicken breast and enjoy!
Chia seeds are one of the healthiest superfoods. They are rich in anti-inflammatory omega-3s and minerals like manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus that are essential for bone health.
Two tablespoons of these tiny seeds are packed with 7 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber.
The best part- you can add them to almost every dish., from smoothies to salads. In fact, vegans often use chia seeds as an egg substitute.
Greek yogurt is simply strained yogurt. So it’s very thick, creamy yogurt that pairs well with sweet and savory dishes. It’s also high in nutrients. 170 grams of greek yogurt has 17 grams of protein and only 100 calories.
But if you intend to lose weight, avoid flavored Greek yogurt that contains added sugar. Instead, opt for the plain version and garnish it with fruit and nuts.
Quinoa is one of the few foods that offer a complete source of protein. It contains all 11 amino acids, making it an excellent choice for vegetarians, vegans, and anyone who does not want to eat meat.
Quinoa is loaded with lysine, an essential amino acid you need to produce collagen for bones and muscle tissue.
Researchers say the grain’s high fiber content makes it one of the most digestible and filling carbohydrates you’ll find. Moreover, it’s high in vitamin B complex, an essential nutrient for breaking down carbs and fat.
Now you may consider this to be an interesting choice. But hemp and hemp seeds have gained a lot of traction these days. Research says that they’re a well-balanced protein source for nourishing your body.
Hemp seeds are a great substitute for croutons in your salads. One tablespoon offers almost 10 grams of protein. Hemp seeds can easily be found in most grocery stores. However, they tend to be a little pricey.
Over to You
There are countless sources of protein you can eat. But when you’re trying to lose weight, you need to be extra careful about what you consume and how much.
For instance, eating a diet high in protein can increase feelings of fullness, reduce hunger, and boost resting energy expenditure, all of which support weight loss.
By focusing on eating protein-rich foods that have other nutrients can help you stay fit and healthy. So it’s time to tweak your diet and squeeze more protein into your meals.
However, whenever creating a diet plan, the key is moderation. Too much of any one substance in your diet can create added health concerns. So make sure to eat a well-rounded diet throughout the day.
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