Is a High-Protein Diet Helpful During Weight Loss?

Is a High-Protein Diet Good for Weight Loss?

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Getting enough protein is important when losing weight.

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MAY 14, 2024   

Key Takeaways

• Protein is an essential part of a healthy diet.
• Getting adequate protein can help with muscle loss associated with intentional weight loss.
• High-quality, high-protein foods can help you meet your protein needs.

You're likely to encounter a lot of advice on your weight loss journey, from "drink more water" and "cut out processed foods" to "eat more protein." How can a high-protein diet be helpful during weight loss? Read on to learn more.

Why Protein Is Important During Intentional Weight Loss

Research shows that 25% of weight loss may come from muscle.1,2 Surprised? Turns out that when you don't get enough calories, your body turns, in part, to the protein and glycogen stored in your muscles for some of the energy that isn't coming from food. Therefore, in addition to losing fat, you're also losing muscle. So how does a high-protein diet help? Getting adequate protein can help preserve muscle while losing weight, and also help support maintenance of that weight loss.

How Much Protein to Eat Per Day

Protein needs are not one-size-fits-all. The good news is that you can calculate your protein needs based on your weight with a simple formula. The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of protein is 0.8 grams protein per kilogram, which is 0.36 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day.

Your protein needs may vary, however. For example, if you've added regular exercise to your weight loss efforts, your protein needs may be higher. Active people and athletes need more protein to support muscle growth and recovery. Most active individuals need about 1.4 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (or 0.63 to 0.9 grams per pound). It's important to talk to your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian to figure out what's right for you.

How can you meet those protein needs? It just takes a bit of planning. Incorporating protein-rich foods like poultry, eggs, beans/legumes, soy products and nutrition shakes into your diet can help you get enough protein. For example, a 3-ounce serving of grilled skinless chicken breast has 25 grams of protein. Pair that with some whole grains, like brown rice or quinoa, and you'll be on your way to hitting your daily protein allotment in a delicious way.

What Are Good High-Protein Options?

Creating a high-protein meal starts with the right ingredients, such as:

  • Poultry, like chicken and turkey
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Soy products, like tofu, tempeh and edamame
  • Beans and legumes, such as lentils and chickpeas
  • Dairy products, such as yogurt and milk
  • High-protein nutrition shakes, such as PROTALITY™ Nutrition Shake

Here are some simple ways to put these foods together into a well-balanced meal plan that supports your weight loss goals:

  • Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs on whole grain toast with a side of low-fat Greek yogurt and fresh berries.
  • Lunch: Mashed chickpeas mixed with lemon juice and 1 tablespoon mayonnaise on a whole wheat wrap with sliced grilled chicken breast, topped with lettuce, tomato and onion.
  • Snack: PROTALITY™ Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake. Blend a PROTALITY™ milk chocolate shake with 2 tablespoons sugar-free chocolate syrup and 1 tablespoon peanut butter powder in a blender. Serve chilled.
  • Dinner: Baked salmon with brown rice and a side of crispy roasted Brussels sprouts with toasted pecans.

Additional Protein Tips

Consulting with your healthcare provider or registered dietitian can help you identify your needs and get expert advice on an approach that is tailored to your unique needs. Rather than loading up on protein at one meal, it may be easier and more sustainable to spread out your protein intake throughout the day among meals and snacks.

Pairing protein with a complex carb and healthy fat makes for a balanced meal. Complex carbs, such as vegetables and whole grains, provide energy; and healthy fats, like avocados or nuts, are good for the heart and brain. It's also worth knowing that high-protein foods contribute to feelings of fullness. So if you're working toward a weight loss goal, opt for a varied, mostly whole-food diet that includes plenty of protein.

Coats, Hats and...Hydration? How to Stay Hydrated in Cold Climates

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Summer is the season that usually gets people thinking about how to stay hydrated. Hot weather makes you sweat, which increases the need for fluids, and you may feel thirstier in general. But what about winter?

Hydration in cold weather can be easy to overlook, but the truth is that cold temperatures can also increase the body's demand for fluids. In this article, you'll learn about how cold weather can increase your potential for dehydration, the signs and symptoms of dehydration and tips for staying hydrated all year long.

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Healthy Foods to Eat Every Day: 365 Days of Nutrition

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Healthy Foods to Eat Every Day: 365 Days of Nutrition


Key Takeaways

• It's important to eat a well-rounded diet that consists of a variety of nutrient-dense foods.
• Small, incremental changes can make a big difference to your health over time.
• Turning your short-term goals into a long-term lifestyle takes time.

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