Protein Keeps You Satisfied

While you might need carbs right before you go jogging in order to have that immediately accessible energy, if you want to build lean muscle mass, stay satisfied between meals, and feel less hungry throughout the day, research shows that higher levels of protein in your diet may help.

Protein breaks down into amino acids, the basic building blocks of our cellular structure. Because amino acids cannot be stored the way carbs and fats can, our bodies need a more constant supply. By keeping a small amount of protein in your body at all times, you can better control your appetite and your tendency to sneak that unhealthy snack between meals.

Protein comes from a variety of sources, including meat, eggs, fish, and dairy. Eating a balance of these foods is the best approach, but make sure that you choose low fat protein sources (chicken breast is better than bacon, low-fat mozzarella is better than cheddar for example).

Choosing Good Protein

While protein can help you feel satiated and promote weight loss, it is very important that you choose the right proteins.

One of the best sources of protein you can add to your diet is seafood. Eating a three ounce portion of fish three to four times a week not only gives you the benefit of protein from the standpoint of appetite control, but fish like salmon also have omega-3 fatty acids, making it an excellent choice for heart health.

Your meal replacement product has the perfectly designed balance of protein to help you feel full longer, provide your body with the essential amino acids it needs, and encourage your body to build lean muscle. You should also add protein to your diet by choosing low-fat protein sources.

Low fat meats are also a good source of protein.

Chicken is an excellent source, but you should choose white meat over dark for the lowest fat content. You should always remove the skin before eating, since chicken skin is very fatty and unhealthy.

You can get a double-dose of good health by choosing to add dairy protein to your diet. Fat-free milk, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat cheese are all excellent sources of protein. They are also great sources of calcium, which is necessary for strong bones and joints. Recent studies have shown that increasing the amount of dairy in your diet can promote weight loss, too.

Eggs have had a bad reputation for a long time, but they are truly one of the least expensive sources of protein available. Even the American Heart Association endorses eggs as a healthy heart choice (they recommend no more than one egg per day for a healthy adult; check with your doctor if you are on a modified diet).

Other great sources of protein include beans, pork, and soy. Beans have the added benefit of being full of fiber, so you feel full for a long time, and a small serving of beans can contain as much protein as a piece of meat (without the fat!). Certain cuts of pork (not bacon or ham) like tenderloin or lean chops are a great source of protein and much healthier than beef. Soy protein not only helps you feel full but also reduces cholesterol and can reduce your risk of heart disease.