Getting enough protein in your diet is one of the most powerful ways to keep all cells in your body happy and healthy. It’s alarming how many people cut out certain macronutrients, such as protein, while counting calories, in an attempt to lose weight or get in better shape.
Often, what they should be doing instead is enjoying a more balanced, wholefoods diet to allow all the cells in your body to thrive and function optimally. In this way, your body gets the best possible chance to lean towards its ideal weight.
I believe many people overlook the power of protein for overall health and body shaping. You can read more benefits of protein in my recent post How To Use Protein For Weight Loss.
A more balanced, wholefoods diet will allow all the cells in your body to thrive and function optimally. In this way, your body gets the best possible chance to lean towards its ideal weight.
HOW MUCH PROTEIN DO I NEED?
The amount of protein you consume each day varies slightly depending on your age, weight, and activity level. To maintain good health, it’s all about getting a good balance of quality protein over the course of a day.
Healthy Chef Protein is perfect for the whole family, including pregnancy. Ideal for improving skin + digestive health, a strong immune system, sports performance + sustained weight loss. The perfect addition to your smoothies to help your body nourish and refuel.
- Protein-rich plant-based foods, such as seeds, nuts and nut butters, quinoa, peas and brown rice, can contribute to your total protein intake and also provides fibre for better digestive health.
- Animal-rich protein sources include organic eggs, cultured dairy (kefir, yoghurt), organic poultry, wild caught fish and grass-fed beef.
- Wholefood protein powders such as Healthy Chef Pure Native WPI and Organic Pea Protein are a convenient way to get your protein intake and can be taken as a meal replacement or a light snack on the go, to curb your cravings.
HOW TO USE PROTEIN FOR WEIGHT LOSS
Protein is essential for aiding muscle repair. Protein powders can also be used to help your weight loss goal if used as a meal replacement or snack. Protein can work effectively to regulate the appetite, support lean muscle and encourage significant weight loss. It is recommended you get between 80 – 120 g of protein per day to aid satiety and repair.
Watch out for some of the ready-made, powdered meal replacements, as many of them contain maltodextrin, which can raise the glycemic load of the product and contribute to fat storage. They can also be loaded with vegetable gums, fillers and hydrogenated oils that are not great for your health and can make you constipated....not what you want when you’re on a flat-tummy quest.
FOR SPORTS PERFORMANCE
When it's about trying to get the most out of your training, timing is everything. If you’re someone who struggles through a morning workout, then having a simple powder and water mix can help you, however afterwards is the best option. This is when blood flow to the exercised muscles is high and the muscle is especially receptive to nutrients, 2 shakes a day are ideal and will help your body and muscles recover quickly.
HOW TO GET MORE PROTEIN IN YOUR DIET:
A GENERAL RULE - Simply include good quality sources of protein that include fish, organic or grass-fed meats, poultry, eggs, yoghurt, nuts, seeds, nut butters in your diet. If you’re having a salad, for example, with minimal protein, you can add some nuts and seeds for a crunchy and delicious way to increase your protein intake. Just make sure every meal has some source of protein.
BREAKFAST – for me the best way of getting a protein rich breakfast is via a healthy smoothie. This is normally a combination of blueberries, 1/2 a banana or a spoonful of nut butter for creaminess, a spoonful of Healthy Chef Protein and some water and ice to blend it all up. REMEMBER....adding some good healthy fats such as almond milk, avocado or nut butter makes it delicious and creamy plus it keeps you fuller for longer so a smoothie such as this can sustain you all morning and even way into the afternoon.
LUNCH / DINNER – enjoy an unlimited amount of greens, a handful of vegetables + some protein of your choice. If I’m time poor, I’ll just buy some store bought leaves from the supermarket and throw over a handful of roasted almonds, boiled eggs or tin of tuna, then drizzle with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Protein rich soups and broths are also great for a quick and healthy dinner. A simple bone broth served with vegetables adds quality amino acids that are quickly infused into the body. A vegetable minestrone is also my go-to protein rich lunch or dinner, I love that you can make up a big batch of soup and enjoy it every day for up to 4 days, or alternatively freeze for the following week.
When I'm on the run and rushed for time, I use Healthy Chef Pure Native WPI or Organic Pea Protein in a smoothie bowl. Not only for breakfast, but even when hubby and I get home from the gym late and just need something quick, tasty and high in nutrients - A creamy potassium rich banana smoothie hits the spot and it helps my body recover whilst I sleep.
AS A LIGHT SNACK - I love to combine 1 serve of Healthy Chef chocolate protein with 1-½ cups of coconut water or water then shake in a blender bottle, it’s like little a Bounty-flavoured drink that will help curb my appetite and stop me buying naughty treats on my way home from work.
A study published in the International Journal of Obesity followed overweight subjects who replaced two of their daily meals with a high protein drink. They were also instructed to walk every day for a minimum of 30 minutes. There was significant weight loss within the group as well as helping the management of metabolic syndrome.
Overall, it's important to ensure you have enough protein in your diet, whether it be from plant, animal or superior protein powder sources. This will help support a healthy weight, lean, toned muscles, better recovery and fewer cravings for unhealthy foods!