A growing body of evidence points to the value of high protein diets for weight loss and weight management. Why? Because not only does protein increase feelings of satiety, but it’s also associated with increased thermogenesis leading to leaner muscle mass. The takeaway for people looking to trim down in the year ahead is that a protein-rich diet may be a winning strategy.
Read on for a roundup of high protein foods which can offer a vital partnership in helping you make your weight loss plans a reality in 2018.
Eggs may have gotten a bad rap in the ’80s, but they’re back and health experts tout them as being among the healthiest foods you can eat. Egg whites make up 35 percent of the calories in a whole egg, with eggs whites packing a pure protein punch. Additionally, eggs are full of vitamins, minerals, good fats, antioxidants, and other body- and brain-boosting nutrients.
Still worried about cholesterol? Says Francisco Lopez-Jiminez, M.D. for the Mayo Clinic: “Chicken eggs are high in cholesterol, but the effect of egg consumption on blood cholesterol is minimal when compared with the effect of trans fats and saturated fats.”
While carbs may seem like public enemy number one these days, not all carbs are bad guys. According to Harvard, “The amount of carbohydrate in the diet – high or low – is less important than the type of carbohydrate in the diet. For example, healthy, whole grains such as whole wheat bread, rye, barley, and quinoa are better choices than highly refined white bread or French fries.”
Enter oats. Loaded with fiber and plenty of other nutrients, oats are a great source of protein and the perfect fuel for getting your body moving in the morning.
3. Pumpkin seeds
In search of a high-protein snack that’s not in bar or shake form? Look no further than pumpkin seeds. In addition to boasting a high protein content, they’re also high in nutrients like iron, magnesium, and zinc.
Other high-protein seeds include chia seeds, flax seeds, and sunflower seeds, all of which make great grab-and-go snacks. (Craving sweets but don’t want to sabotage your diet in the process? Be sure to check out our free e-book, 12 Healthy Dessert Recipes.)
Broccoli may not be the first food that comes to mind when you think of the word protein, but it absolutely delivers and then some.
Says Prevention: “Broccoli’s not only an awesome source of fiber, its protein content is surprising, too (for a veggie anyway). And you can’t go wrong with a vegetable that’s been proven to deliver cancer-fighting compounds like sulforaphane.”
Other greens loaded with the good stuff include peas, spinach, kale, artichokes, and Brussel sprouts.
While animal proteins like lean beef, chicken, and turkey typically make the list of go-to proteins, shrimp are often overlooked, which is a shame given that they’re made up almost entirely of protein. That’s not all.
Enthuses Health.com of this tasty treat from the sea: “Each jumbo shrimp provides about 3 grams, and contains very little fat and carbohydrate….Aside from protein, shrimp provide a pretty impressive array of nutrients. Four ounces steamed contains over 100 percent of the Daily Value for selenium, over 75 percent for vitamin B12, over 50 percent for phosphorous, and over 30 percent for choline, copper, and iodine. And while we don’t typically think of animal proteins as sources of antioxidants, shrimp contain two types.”
Shrimp are so good for you, in fact, that they landed on a spot on NBC News’s ranking of “22 disease-fighting superfoods,” among more obvious contenders like almonds, cabbage, and cherries.
The best part of adding more of these five protein-packed foods to your weight loss plans in 2018 is that they’re as delicious as they are nutritious, which makes eating well easier than ever. But diet is only one piece of the weight loss puzzle. Also essential is exercise. To learn more about how Brick Bodies can help, sign up for a trial pass today.