Healthy and Happy with More Protein
Angela Braden has researched and reported on wellness and lifestyle for a decade. She has been published hundreds of times in national and international magazines. Angela serves as a speaker for Alive! Expo (health convention) and as the Editor and Founder of www.angelicindulgence.com web magazine, where you’ll find more indulgent health tips and articles updated monthly.
The mission of Angelic Indulgence® [www.angelicindulgence.com] is to share ideas that help people build healthier lifestyles in ways that feel indulgent. That means maintaining a healthy, feel good weight without being hungry, indulging in more playtime without feeling guilty, and having vibrant energy to get everything you want out of every day.
One of the simplest ways to curb appetite, maintain a lean, muscular physique, and even keep mood on an even keel, is to eat adequate protein. The easy calculation for most people is half your body weight equals the number of grams of protein you need. Children need slightly less and men need slightly more than women. Studies also show the more active you are, the more protein you need. A recent study from the International Journal of Sports Nutrition provides this guideline: those involved in strength training should get .7 grams of protein per pound of body weight, per day. Therefore, a 200 lb man (200 * .7) would need 140 grams of protein. Getting enough protein, while critical, is just the beginning. When and from what sources you take it will also make a major impact on your energy and well-being.
One Simple Practice that Will Change Your Life:
Every time you eat carbohydrates (bread, fruit, crackers, potatoes, pasta, etc.) always have protein with it. This slows down the release of sugar in the bloodstream. Maintaining balanced blood sugar is vital in maintaining a healthy weight and reducing cravings. Try for 20 grams (the amount in a small chicken breast) each time you eat a meal and 8-10 grams (one yogurt) when you have a snack. Simply paying attention to blood sugar balance will make the difference between weight loss that is painful and weight loss that is indulgent! If you’re happy with your weight, this balancing act is still beneficial, since it promotes a more balanced mood and enhances strength and focus.
Choose Your Source:
Lean, organic meat and dairy are the obvious choices for high-quality protein. Eggs and yogurt are excellent choices for children since they are easy to digest. But if you are not much of a carnivore, here’s an indulgent tip: simply keep a canister of whey protein powder on hand (available at supermarkets, drugstores, and sports nutrition stores). You can quickly mix this with organic milk for a midday snack, start the day with a protein smoothie, or pack a protein punch in your pudding, yogurt or ice cream for a healthy dessert! I’ve also experimented with adding protein powder to baked goodies. The most successful of these tricks is with my “protein cookies”. Sub in ¼ of the flour in the recipe with protein powder and add an extra egg to increase the moisture level. For protein packed ice cream, let it melt a bit, then mix in a half a scoop of whey protein concentrate; stir vigorously—a quick, indulgent trick indeed! The protein powder supplements are best when balanced with a variety of protein sources, including beans, nuts, organic lean meat, yogurt, tempeh (a meaty fermented soy product), and eggs in the diet. But it sure helps make getting more protein much easier and even indulgent!
Stay well, lean and balanced!
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*Opinions expressed are solely those of the writer