Want the magic pill to help you to burn fat, build muscle (while not looking bulky), and feel amazing? Look no further, the magic pill is here! And it's called PROTEIN!
Hitting a daily goal in dietary protein is ESSENTIAL if you are wanting to lose body fat and build lean muscle tissue! Most women that I meet with severely under eat protein and they're dealing with all the consequences of that on the daily: constant cravings, excess body fat, under muscled, blood sugar issues, and the list goes on! But I can promise you this, when I begin working with clients and they begin to be consistent at hitting their daily protein goal, two things happen: they lose body fat and they gain lean muscle tissue! I've seen this time and time again, with countless clients, both women and men, alike!
If you're still not convinced, studies show that consuming the right amount of dietary protein helps us to hit our body composition goals by tapping into 4 unique benefits that protein provides:
- Protein increases the body's ability to burn fat as fuel, also known as fat oxidation! This increases when we eat more protein!
- Protein increases the body's ability to build lean muscle tissue. Muscle tissue is amazing because it is very "expensive" to keep on the body. It requires a lot of calories to maintain, meaning you burn more calories when you have more of it.
- Protein helps to balance blood sugar levels which keeps you fuller and satiated longer- meaning you wont feel like snacking as often!
- My personal favorite--- Protein burns more calories in digestion than any other macronutrient (carbs or fats). This means that when you increase the amount of protein you are eating in a day, your body is actually burning more calories digesting that food for you during that day's time!
For starters, I recommend taking a simple approach at learning how to reach for your daily protein goal.
- Aim to have at least a fist full of protein at each meal of the day and aim to have protein with each snack.
- Next, determine what your daily need of protein is. You want to find your ideal body weight and eat 1g per pound of ideal body weight. So if you are a female who has a goal to weigh 130 lbs., you need to eat 130g of protein each day.
- Read your nutrition labels on the food you eat. Buy a kitchen scale and weigh out your meat. Keep track on a log on your kitchen counter until it becomes second nature hitting this goal daily.
Finally, here are my top 10 easy, go-to protein items:
- Greek Yogurt with Berries: A combination of creamy Greek yogurt with some fresh berries provides a delicious mix of protein and antioxidants.
- Edamame: Lightly salted or seasoned, these soybeans are a tasty treat and a protein powerhouse. You can eat them steamed or dried!
- String Cheese: An easy-to-carry snack that can be paired with an apple to add some fiber and extra nutrients!
- Nut Butter on Sprouted Grain Bread: Slather 2 TBSP of almond or peanut butter on a slice of sprouted grain bread for a quick protein and energy boost.
- Beef Jerky or Beef Sticks: This is a great high protein, low calorie snack!
- Hard-Boiled Eggs: An oldie but a goodie. They're easy to prepare in advance and can be seasoned with a pinch of salt or some herbs for flavor.
- Tuna Salad Lettuce Wraps: Mix canned tuna with some avocado or avocado oil mayo, and wrap it in large lettuce leaves for a crunchy, protein-filled delight.
- Roasted Chickpeas: Seasoned and roasted chickpeas can be a crunchy alternative to chips, with the added benefit of protein.
- Protein Bars: While there are many on the market, look for ones with low sugar content and natural ingredients. (I recommend Perfect Bars or Rx Bars.)
- Cottage Cheese with Pineapple or Melon Slices: A refreshing mix of creamy cottage cheese with juicy fruits can be a tantalizing treat.
If you need help customizing the plan or approach for your body composition and fat loss goals, reach out! We'd love to pair you up with one of our nutrition coaches in Lakeland, FL to ensure that you will reach your goals in the least amount of time possible!