Protein is a key source of nutrition when it comes to building muscle, becoming leaner, and losing weight. So why does it help and how can you include more healthy proteins in your meal plan?
Hoes does protein help with weight loss?
Creating a nutrition and exercise plan that includes protein as a primary source of energy can help with long-term weight loss by increasing your metabolism and building and maintaining muscle. Here are some of the benefits of making protein a primary staple in your diet:
Satiating your appetite
Because protein is full of amino acids and filling, it is a better way to fuel and satisfy your body than other food groups like carbohydrates. The process of eating protein actually makes your body burn calories as it is digested, in a process called ‘diet-induced thermogenesis’ – which is why you may have experienced the ‘meat sweats’ before!
Protein also slows the absorption of carbs into your system, which regulates your blood sugar levels and helps reduce cravings.
By ingesting a healthy amount of food that is high in protein but low in fat, like chicken, fish, nuts, and beans, you can reduce your overall food intake and kerb your appetite, helping you feel fuller for longer while reducing your calorie intake.
Building and maintaining muscle mass
Protein is the building block of your muscles, making it a key source of an exercise routine that is intended to make you leaner and stronger. This is especially true for those in their 30s or 40s, a time in your life where exercise can result in loss of not just fat, but also lean muscle mass and bone density.
A high protein diet helps preserve your muscle mass while you are working out, and can even help preserve muscle for longer, helping you burn more fat and increasing your metabolic rate.
What type of protein should I include in my weight loss meal plan?
A healthy mix of high-intensity exercise like cardio and strength training like Pilates combined with a diet high in protein is vital for long-term weight loss. Sources of protein that are low in fat and nutritious include:
- seafood, like tuna, salmon, prawns, and crab
- plant based proteins like legumes and beans
- Greek yoghurt
- lean meats including chicken or turkey breast, venison, lean beef and pork
- seeds and nuts in small quantities, including peanuts, almonds and sunflower seeds
If you’re a proud owner of our recipe book, Bootcamp Kitchen, we recommend these deliciously satisfying high protein meals:
- Tuna Nicoise Salad – page 52
- Protein burgers – page 110
- Chunky Beef Chili – page 126
- “Love it or hate it” Succulent Steak – page 134
Join us on our weight loss bootcamps in Northumberland to kickstart your fitness, develop a healthy meal plan and to improve your wellbeing!