One serving of lean protein, such as lean chicken or fish, is about the size of a deck of cards and contains around 21 grams of protein.
Weight loss plans emphasize foods that are low in fat, low in carbohydrates, and low in calories, but they all seem to gloss over one thing that every successful dieter needs: adequate protein. Particularly if you have stepped up your physical activity as part of your weight loss program, you need to ensure that you consume enough protein so that your muscles and organs will have what they need for repair and maintenance after a challenging workout. Protein also has another quality that is great for those who want to lose weight: it helps you feel full longer, so you feel less tempted by unhealthy foods.
Lack of Protein and Overeating
Multiple nutritional and weight loss studies published in major medical journals like the Journal of the American Medical Association have shown that when people skimp on high-protein foods, they are more prone to overeating. Cutting back on protein can be one of the factors contributing to weight gain. By the same token, consuming lean protein from skim milk, skinless chicken breasts, and other sources like pre-packaged protein snacks can help you get the nutrition you need and feel satisfied longer. The result is less risk of overeating.
How Much Do You Need?
Generally speaking, from 10% to 35% of the food you consume should be lean protein. Women should consume around 46 grams of lean protein per day, while men should consume around 56 grams per day. One serving of lean protein, such as lean chicken or fish, is about the size of a deck of cards and contains around 21 grams of protein. A serving of lean protein at lunch and another at dinner will supply most of the protein you need. Protein snacks can help supply the rest of the protein you need.
When you're trying to lose excess weight, protein snacks can be among the best nutritional resources available. Specially designed weight loss snacks are high in protein and low in fats and carbohydrates and they come in a wide variety. For example, savory diet meat sticks are a terrific alternative to the less-healthy meat sticks you find in the snack aisle because they're very low fat and contain around 14 grams of protein. And they're available in great flavors like pepper, barbecue, and even maple brown sugar. You'll satisfy your snack craving without overeating or consuming high levels of fat or sugars.
When your sweet tooth kicks in, you need better choices than the candy bars available in the typical vending machine. Fortunately, high protein snack bars are now available in delicious flavors like peanut butter, chocolate marshmallow, fudge, and caramel. You can generally get around 15 grams of protein, without the sugars and fats you don't need, which means you'll feel more satisfied on fewer calories. These pre-packaged protein bars are great for making up the bit of extra protein you need beyond that you would get if you have a serving of lean protein at lunch and at dinner. The snack options available to you can help you reach your weight loss goals without compromising nutrition.
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