Protein isn’t a secret, nor is it a fad. And while it technically isn’t dubbed a ‘superfood’, we classify it as pretty damn super.
Protein is one of the three major macronutrients that make up your diet, alongside fats and carbohydrates. It plays a pivotal role in cell repair, transports molecules throughout the body and defends against bacteria and viruses.
In addition to all the magic happening inside our bodies, protein also has a number of physical benefits that can be seen and felt. Protein helps to keep you feeling fuller for longer, it boosts your metabolism and it aids in building leaner muscle. These benefits can be a major helping hand on a weight loss journey.
While you may not be deficient in protein, most people could benefit from a higher protein intake. Eager to learn how to get more protein in your diet? Make some simple adjustments and give your body a protein boost!
When eating your meal, try to eat your protein first, before you eat any of the starches on your plate. Protein promotes the production of the gut hormone, Peptide YY (PYY), which is responsible for making you feel full.
Plus, if you eat your protein first, you can also help to keep blood sugar and insulin levels low after a meal. Lower insulin levels can promote weight loss and lower the risk of disease.
- Swap regular yoghurt for Greek Yoghurt
Regular yoghurt can unfortunately contain tonnes of hidden sugar, however Greek yoghurt sits on the opposite side of the spectrum, sneaking in up to 20 grams of protein per serving. Look for low-sugar options and add a scoop to your breakfast or enjoy as an afternoon snack.
Nuts and seeds are an excellent source of plant-based protein and are easy to incorporate into your diet. Eat nuts as a healthy snack, or add them to a meal to increase its protein content. We recommend adding a spoonful of peanut butter to your smoothies, mixing almonds into your muesli, including cashews in your stir fries or sprinkling mixed nuts and seeds on your salads.
- Snack on hummus
If you aren’t already obsessed with hummus, prepare to have your mind blown. Delicious, filling and packed full of protein; hummus is an easy snack or addition to meals. With almost 8 grams of protein per serving, you can rely on the protein-rich chickpeas in hummus to boost your daily protein intake.
- Try a high-quality protein powder
Often labelled as a post workout exclusive, protein powder is actually one of the easiest ways to get protein into any of your meals. Do your research and find a protein powder that suits you best. There are a number of great options, including plant-based varieties such as pea, hemp and brown rice protein.
If you opt for a flavourless protein powder, you can sneak it into some of your favourite recipes without a trace. Smoothies, soups, salad dressings – you name it.
- Sprinkle nutritional yeast on meals
Nutritional yeast has been awarded as a great alternative to cheese, however regardless of whether you eat cheese or not, you can still incorporate nutritional yeast into your diet. It has around three times more protein per serving than parmesan cheese, so try sprinkling on salads, popcorn, soups and pasta.
Our final tip and probably the most important is to ensure you’re including protein in every meal. How much protein per meal is ideal? Current research recommends eating 20-30 grams in each meal. This amount is proven to achieve fullness and preserve muscle mass more effectively than smaller amounts of protein consumed during the day.
What’s the best way to get protein? While there’s no one answer for every body type and dietary preference, we recommend trying a few different ways to find what works best for you. Increase your protein intake and feel the benefits for yourself!