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The 7 Best Sources of Protein

Consuming the best sources of protein at each meal helps to reduce your appetite by keeping you full for longer. Also, the body uses energy to turn protein into carbohydrates, which means you burn more calories with protein, even while resting. Here are the 7 best sources of protein to help you shed those extra pounds.

1. Seafood

Seafood is one of the best sources of protein, as it’s usually low in fat. Fish like salmon and tuna are actually higher in fat, but because it’s the heart healthy omega 3 fatty acids, enjoy eating it in moderation.

2. White Meat

White meat provides lean proteins, whereas dark meat is much higher in fat. Be sure to remove the skin before cooking as it’s loaded with saturated fat. Chicken breasts and pork tenderloin are two great sources of white meat. Pork tenderloin was previously known as a fattier meat, but it is actually 31 percent leaner than it was 20 years ago.

3. Dairy 

Choose skim or low fat products that not only have a substantial amount of protein, but also calcium to keep bones healthy and strong.  Incorporate yogurt or milk into your breakfast routine or have low fat cheese and crackers as an afternoon snack.

4. Eggs

Eggs are an excellent source of protein and are an easy addition to any meal. Try adding a hardboiled egg to your lunchtime salad for an added boost of protein.

5. Beans

A half a cup of beans has as much protein as 3 ounces of broiled steak. Beans are loaded with fiber and will keep you feeling full for hours. Beans such as kidney, lima and even quinoa are excellent sources of calcium.

6. Soy 

25 grams of soy protein per day can lower you cholesterol and reduce your risk of heart disease. If you are a vegetarian, try soy protein with tofu for a healthy, low fat diet.

7. Lean Beef 

Lean beef only has one more gram of saturated fat than skinless chicken breast, plus it provides the added bonus of vitamins such as zinc, iron and B12.

If you are still having trouble adding protein rich foods into your diet, try getting it from other sources like meal replacement drinks, cereal  and energy bars. Just be sure to read the label, as some are not as healthy as they claim to be. Be sure that the drink or bar has at least six grams of protein and is low in sugar and fat.

While protein is an important part of a healthy diet, always be careful not to consume too much of one thing. Too much protein can be converted to fat and stored in the body. The average adult needs about half a gram of protein per pound of healthy weight. Any diet which requires you to a high amount of one nutrient is not wise. A good balance of essential nutrients is key to good health and staying fit.

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