The simple health benefits of protein
The building blocks of the body will help develop lean muscle, boost metabolic health, burn fat and fill you up, says The Fit Pharmacist Holly Louise.
Numerous studies have shown that a high-protein diet has major benefits for muscle gain, fat loss and metabolic health.
Without enough diverse protein food sources in your diet, you risk becoming deficient in certain amino acids, which can result in low energy, trouble building muscle mass, low concentration and memory, mood swings, unstable blood sugar levels and trouble maintaining or losing weight.
Here are just a few benefits of protein.
Keeps you full for longer
A high-protein diet reduces hunger, resulting in fewer calories being consumed. This is caused by improved function of weight-regulating hormones.
Makes dieting easier
Research shows a high-protein diet is easier to follow when dieting because it results in less hunger, mood disturbance, stress, fatigue, and diet dissatisfaction than lower protein diets, which in turn leads to improved dietary compliance.
Helps in building lean muscle
Muscle is made primarily of protein, and therefore it is the “building block” of muscle. Eating a sufficient amount of protein on a daily basis is the key dietary factor which helps your body to preserve your muscle and burn fat instead while in a calorie deficit. Combining weight training with adequate protein will result in optimal muscle gain.
Proteins from animal sources such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy are favourable because they contain high and balanced amounts of essential amino acids. Vegetarians and vegans can still meet their protein requirements with strategic meal planning and incorporating certain plant-based proteins, such as rice and pea protein, which are also high quality and amino acid-rich.
I have found implementing daily protein targets for my clients has produced some amazing results. If you are looking to transform your body or even to just improve your health and vitality, then adding protein to your diet should be your first step!
The following are suggestions of high-quality protein sources:
Cheese, milk, yoghurt (especially Greek yoghurt)
Meat and poultry
Chicken, turkey, beef, ham, fish, pork, and seafood
Beans and legumes
Beans, lentils, tempeh, tofu, soybeans, split peas, chickpeas, and falafel
Almonds, pistachios, walnuts, cashews, peanuts, and nut butters
Whey protein powder, plant proteins, such as pea, brown rice, hemp, and protein bars
Holly Louise, aka The Fit Pharmacist, is a registered pharmacist, certified personal trainer, online coach and ambassador for INC Sports. Find out more about Holly Louise on Instagram, Facebook and at The Fit Pharmacist.