10 ways to get more protein in your diet
In a busy world, it’s tough to eat right all the time.
When you are trying to change your body, however, it is essential that you make some shifts in your nutrition to get better at burning fat and building lean muscle. One of these shifts is to decrease the amount of processed carbohydrates and increase the amount of lean protein you consume. When you do this, your body will create a hormonal environment where it will store fat less effectively and will burn it for energy with greater efficiency.
I was consulting with a client last week who has committed to making some diet changes this year. Her motivation is to get back the energy that she’s lost over the years to a desk job. She’s done great so far, but, has been amazed at how much of her diet is made up of carbohydrates despite her efforts to minimize them.
Here are 10 ways that she, and you, can add protein to your diet without adding any extra work.
1. Bring a shaker bottle to work with whey protein in it. When it’s “feeding time,” add water or almond milk, shake and enjoy 20 to 30 grams of high-quality protein.
2. Top a salad with chickpeas instead of croutons or add chickpeas to any wrap that you might be enjoying. One cup contains about 15 grams of protein.
3. Portion out ½ cup servings of mixed nuts into seven snack baggies. Do this once for the whole week and bring one to work with you daily for a high protein snack with some good, healthy fats.
4. If you have a fridge at work or can bring a cooler bag, wrap leftover chicken breast in a mini wholewheat tortilla with some baby spinach, tomatoes and honey mustard. This is perfect for a snack on the go instead of grabbing a coffee shop muffin. To further decrease the amount of carbs, wrap the meat in a leaf of romaine lettuce.
5. Spread a can of spicy Thai tuna onto 2 spelt Lavash crackers. Eat with a handful of baby carrots.
6. Hard boil six eggs on the weekend and bring one or two to work with you to peel and eat when you need to fuel up on a high protein snack. Eat with a piece of fruit and you’ve got a great muscle-building snack!
7. Larabar Alt Protein bars contain pea protein, as well as nuts, brown rice flour and other wholesome ingredients. One bar has 10 grams of protein and they’re vegan friendly.
8. With 2 to 3 times the amount of protein found in regular yogurt, single serve Greek yogurts are a great way to add some protein to your day. Try to avoid eating the jam that is at the bottom to decrease the amount of sugar that you eat, or buy plain and add your own fruit.
9. In a pinch, turkey jerky (or even beef jerky) is a decent high-protein, low-fat snack. It’s great paired with a piece of fruit or some raw veggies. (Jerky can be high in sodium, so it shouldn’t be an “everyday” option).
10. Edamame are young soybean pods commonly eaten in Japan and other Asian countries. Once steamed, boiled or microwaved, you eat the pea inside and discard the shell. Usually served with a sprinkling of sea salt, they are easy to carry to work in a baggie and will add some variety, protein and healthy fat to your daily snack experience.
Cut down on the processed “snacks” you eat during the day and add some more protein and your body will become better at burning fat, all day long.
Mixed nuts are a good source of protein