How To Get More Protein In Your Diet

Baby Carrots And Hummus

7 Cheap Ways to Get More Protein in YOUR Diet

Carrots contain complex carbs to sustain your energy levels, and provide enough potassium to control blood pressure and muscle contractions. Add 2 tablespoons of hummus to your mini meal for slow-digesting carbs, protein, and unsaturated fatsall the right elements to fuel activity. Plus, most varieties are made with olive oil, which contains oleic acida fat that aids in warding off the gene responsible for 20 to 30 percent of breast cancers, according to research from Northwestern University.

Make Savvy Protein Swaps

You dont have to overhaul your diet to get more protein inoften, the simplest swaps are the easiest to sustain!

Making high-protein food swaps, whether in the kitchen or when snacking on the go, is an easy way to increase your protein intake while still enjoying your favourite meals and foods.

So consider swapping out the lower protein option for its higher protein alternative:

  • Coconut yoghurt Soy yoghurt
  • Oat milk Soy milk
  • Plain/flavoured yoghurt Greek yoghurt
  • White rice Quinoa
  • White bread Seeded bread
  • Soft cheese Cottage cheese

Can You Eat Too Much Protein

For most of us, our daily protein requirements are easily achieved by a healthy, balanced diet. The Department of Health advises adults to avoid consuming more than twice the recommended daily intake of protein . This is because, in the long term, consuming too much protein might lead to health issues such as an increased risk of osteoporosis and a worsening of an existing kidney problem. However, research in this area is mixed and it is likely that other factors may influence outcome, such as whether the protein is of animal or vegetable origin and how balanced the diet is in terms of vitamins and minerals.

One of the main issues with our Western diet is that often, our breakfasts and lunches are low in protein but high in carbohydrates, with a protein-packed evening meal. It is better to aim to spread your protein intake out throughout the day. Try our suggestions for high protein breakfasts, high protein lunches and high protein dinners.

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Ways To Get More Protein Without Eating Meat

There are lots of wholesome ways to increase your protein intake without resorting to meat.

These days, protein seems to be the superstar nutrient and for good reason. Gram for gram, its more satisfying than carbohydrates or fat meaning it keeps you fuller, longer. Protein is also essential for repairing and building muscle and keeps your metabolism humming along.

The daily recommended dietary allowance is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. For most adult men and women, that translates to 46 to 56 grams of protein each day. For reference, a 3-ounce, fist-sized hamburger delivers 24 grams of protein.

What Is A High

How To Get More Protein In Your Diet

A high-protein diet is one where you work on getting plenty of protein probably more than you are used to getting as the first focus of your eating patterns. Protein-rich foods include eggs, meat, seafood, legumes, and dairy products. These foods are not only high in protein but high in nutrients in general. That means a high-protein diet is also a high nutrition diet.

Increasing protein can be very helpful for weight loss because protein can help tame your appetite.1 It also supplies plenty of the raw materials needed to maintain your muscles and your metabolism, both of which help ensure that youre burning calories at an appropriate rate.2

For people who want to build muscle, getting more protein than is typically recommended is a must. Current recommendations, known as the RDA or the recommended dietary allowance, are designed for healthy people and meant to prevent malnutrition they arent meant to help increase muscle mass or improve medical conditions such as type 2 diabetes.3

Diets with increased protein can have a positive effect on the treatment and prevention of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, and possibly even heart disease.4 Higher protein intake also helps prevent sarcopenia, which is a loss of muscle mass that can occur as you age, and a related condition, osteoporosis, which is a loss of bone mass.5

More high-protein guides

You can read more about how much protein most people are eating now in our expanded section here:

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Add Spirulina To Your Smoothies

One simple way for how to get more protein is to make it a topping. Nutritionist Ashvini Mashru, RD, recommends spirulina, the superfood youve never heard of. This natural algae is one of the most potent protein sources available, with nearly 16 grams per ounce. Not to mention its a great source of antioxidants, B vitamins, iron, calcium, and other nutrients. Add it to your fruit smoothies or protein shakes! Dont miss the other ways spirulina benefits your health.

Why You Might Want To Add Back A Few Carbs

We cant say it too often: if you are doing well on your low-carb or keto diet you do not have to add back more carbs!However, it is my clinical experience that there are some reasons why you might want to consider including some carbs in your diet.The biggest one for me is the potential to improve your sleep quality.Some patients complain of having a harder time falling asleep or staying asleep when they do a very strict low-carb or keto diet. People describe feeling revved up and more wakeful.It makes sense from an evolutionary perspective to be more alert, active, and energetic when you have the highest need to look for food. And this response may be why some people describe feeling more mentally alert and energetic on a very low-carb diet.

But some research as well as my clinical experience has found that some people experience sleep disturbances when eating a very low-carb diet.9Timing carbs in the evening could provide a few benefits such as faster sleep onset.10

If you have difficulty sleeping on a very low-carbohydrate diet, you could eat a few more carbs at your evening meal. The amount could be about 20 grams, such as from sweet potato, squash, a few more vegetables, or some pieces of apple or other fruit.Not only could your sleep benefit, but it could leave you feeling more alert during the day, when your glycogen is low after your overnight fast.

So be very judicious about your use of carbs.

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Choose Each Source Wisely

Yes, animal meat, poultry and fish are protein powerhouses. Dairy products , beans, legumes, nuts and seeds are also great sources. One essential amino acid in particular, leucine, stimulates muscle growth and prevents the deterioration of muscle as we age. You’ll find a decent amount of leucine in chicken, beef, pork chops, tuna, ricotta cheese and pumpkin seeds.

Keep an eye on calories. Our increased protein needs can drive them up at a time when a slowing metabolism means you need slightly fewer. The good news: Studies suggest that protein is more satiating than carbohydrates or fat, making it easier for us to steer clear of processed foods and sugar-laden snacks.

The Health Benefits Of Protein


Protein gives you the energy to get up and goand keep going. While too much protein can be harmful to people with kidney disease, diabetes, and some other conditions, eating the right amount of high-quality protein:

  • Keeps your immune system functioning properly, maintains heart health and your respiratory system, and speeds recovery after exercise.
  • Is vital to the growth and development of children and for maintaining health in your senior years.
  • Can help reduce your risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
  • Can help you think clearly and may improve recall.
  • Can improve your mood and boost your resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression.
  • May help you maintain a healthy weight by curbing appetite, making you feel full longer, and fueling you with extra energy for exercising.

As well as being imperative to feeling healthy and energetic, protein is also important to the way you look. Eating high-quality protein can help you maintain healthy skin, nails, and hair, build muscle, and maintain lean body mass while dieting.

While most people eating a Western diet get a sufficient quantity of protein each day, many of us are not getting the quality of protein we need.

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Proteins Are Made Of Amino Acids

Proteins are made up of building blocks called amino acids. There are about 20 different amino acids that link together in different combinations. Your body uses them to make new proteins, such as muscle and bone, and other compounds such as enzymes and hormones. It can also use them as an energy source.

Some amino acids can be made by your body there are 11 of these and theyre known as non-essential amino acids. There are nine amino acids that your body cannot make, and they are known as essential amino acids. You need to include enough of these in your diet so that your body can function.

Proteins High In Healthy Fats

Even though they aren’t as protein dense, or often as low in calories, nutritionally speaking, higher-fat proteins can be just as good for you as low-fat protein options. It all depends on your personal nutrition needs and dietary goals.

Because fat is more calorically dense – providing twice as many calories per gram as other macronutrients – you can get more calories in a smaller portion size. Which is why a little healthy fat, like plant based fat from nuts and seeds, can be a great addition to help add calories when trying to gain muscle.

But this also doesn’t mean eating high fat foods will make you fat! Some fatty foods can be satiating – keeping your appetite in check when trying to cut calories. Fat can also slow the absorption of protein and carbs. This may be beneficial if you are looking for long-lasting energy.

Additionally, fatty proteins from fish and plant based sources are associated with heart health benefits and support good nutrition overall .

Quality proteins that are higher in fat and lower in carbs include nuts, seeds, nut butters, fatty fish, full fat dairy, and some meat alternatives.

High fat proteins work especially great for keto dieters or those looking to gain muscle.

Here are eight options to try:

  • Mackerel
  • Whole Eggs
  • Peanuts
  • While many nuts and seeds may seem like they have a higher carbohydrate content at first glance, their net carbs are actually low when consider their high fiber content.

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    You’re A Vegetarian Or Vegan

    Eat These Recipes:High-Protein Vegan Recipes

    Good news for those forgoing animal products: If you’re eating enough calories, opting for a plant-based diet doesn’t automatically mean you’re not consuming enough protein. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the terms “complete” and “incomplete” protein are misleading. “Protein from a variety of plant foods, eaten during the course of a day, supplies enough of all indispensable amino acids when caloric requirements are met,” the Academy said in a 2016 position statement.

    Vegetarians and vegans may need to pay a bit more attention to what foods give them the best protein-for-calorie value than the average meat-eater, but eating a varied diet that includes protein-rich legumes and soy will keep your body and muscles humming along just fine.

    Other great vegetarian sources of protein: eggs, Greek yogurt, nuts, quinoa and peanut butter. See our Top Vegetarian Protein Sources if you need help eating more protein. Vegans, read up on our Top 10 Vegan Protein Sources.

    Healthy Eating: 5 Convenient Ways To Add More Protein To Your Diet

    How to Get Enough Protein in a Plant

    If you’re struggling to put on or preserve muscle, you’re probably not getting enough protein. Find out how much protein you should be eating and how to easily incorporate more into your diet!

    When it comes to your diet, forget the fads and start with science. Multiple studies have suggested that higher-protein diets result in greater weight loss, greater fat loss, and higher preservation of lean mass than diets poor in protein. Despite these excellent findings, most people’s diets seriously lack in the protein department.

    I’m going to help you easily add more protein into your diet with five simple strategies. Before we attack that, however, it’s important to establish how much protein you should actually be eating on a daily basis. Let’s look at the details.

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    Use A Pesto With Pine Nuts And Tree Nuts

    Pine nuts, traditionally used in pestos, have about 9 grams of protein per half a cup, which is a great option for spreads on sandwiches and for quinoa pastas. But if you add a handful of tree nuts such as almonds or walnuts to your pine nut pesto, you can almost double the amount of protein you’re getting!

    Fight Sweets With Healthy Stuff

    Yet another birthday at work with cupcakes? Or extra stress have you aching for some sweets? To fight the urge, Berndt has this trick: When Im craving sweets, I reach for a chocolate milkshake made with chocolate whey protein blended with frozen almond milk cubes. Its delicious, and the protein helps curb my craving for sweets.

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    Getting Too Little Protein

    Protein deficiency means not getting enough protein in your diet. Protein deficiency is rare in Australia, as the Australian diet generally includes far more protein than we actually need. However, protein deficiency may occur in people with special requirements, such as older people and people following strict vegetarian or vegan diets.

    Symptoms of protein deficiency include:

    • wasting and shrinkage of muscle tissue
    • oedema
    • anaemia
    • slow growth .

    Lentils: Nutrition Benefits And How To Cook Them


    Lentils are edible seeds from the legume family.

    Theyre well known for their lens shape and sold with or without their outer husks intact.

    Though theyre a common food staple in countries such as Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Morocco, and Tunisia, the greatest production of lentils nowadays is in Canada (

    Here are some of the most common lentil types:

    • Brown. These are the most widely eaten type. They have an earthy flavor, hold their shape well during cooking, and are great in stews and soups.
    • Puy. These come from the French region Le Puy. Theyre similar in color but about one-third of the size of green lentils and have a peppery taste.
    • Green. These can vary in size and are usually a less expensive substitute in recipes that call for Puy lentils.
    • Yellow and red. These lentils are split and cook quickly. Theyre great for making dal and have a somewhat sweet and nutty flavor.
    • Beluga. These are tiny black lentils that look almost like caviar. They make a great base for warm salads.


    Lentils are often overlooked, even though theyre an inexpensive way of getting a wide variety of nutrients.

    For example, theyre packed with B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, and potassium.

    Lentils are made up of more than 25% protein, which makes them an excellent meat alternative. Theyre also a great source of iron, a mineral that is sometimes lacking in vegetarian diets .

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    Add Hummus To A Sandwich

    Forget the fattening mayonnaise and cheese you can satisfy your need for something super creamy by spreading hummus on your sandwich instead. The chickpeas in your hummus are packed full of protein, and the flavorful herbs and garlic can be added to give your sandwich some zingwithout the grease and fat. To make your own hummus at home, check out our 11 Tips for Making the Perfect Homemade Hummus!

    Make Every Meal Count

    Some nutritionists believe that when you eat your protein is every bit as important as how much you’re getting. For instance, the typical American’s intake is weighted toward the end of the day say, in a chicken breast or fish at dinner but this may not be the most efficient way to process the macronutrient.

    “We’re always building protein and breaking it down it’s dynamic, says Rodriguez. Spreading your protein intake throughout the day stops muscle from breaking down intermittently during the day. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that those ages 67 to 84 who evenly distributed their protein consumption throughout the day tended to have stronger muscles than those who packed their protein into a single meal.

    Older adults need 20 to 30 grams of protein per meal, along with 12 to 15 grams per snack, for optimal muscle health, says Rodriguez. To bulk up your breakfast, you might opt for plain Greek yogurt with sliced strawberries or a cut-up banana and half a cup of granola or two veggie sausages and a side of scrambled eggs .

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    Eat A Savoury Breakfast

    Generally speaking, savoury breakfasts tend to be higher in protein than sweet ones. By opting for eggs, sausages, turkey bacon, smoked salmon, tofu scramble, cheese, or a combination of them, youll likely consume more protein than you would opting for a bowl of cereal, a fruit smoothie, or toast with jam. With that being said, if you prefer a sweet breakfast, thats not a problem, just do your best to be strategic and look for ways to boost the protein intake with foods such as yogurt, milk, nuts, or nut butter. In fact, there are plenty of high-protein breakfast foods you can include in your morning meal.

    How To Eat More Protein And Less Fat

    7 Ways To Get More Protein In Your Diet

    Like I mentioned, fat can be a little bit trickier to isolate in your diet.

    Almost everything has some fat in it.

    But there are fewer foods that are MOSTLY fat

    Still, if you want to sneak some more protein into your diet without adding calories, cutting back on your fat intake could be on place to look.

    Here are some foods you might be eating that are high in fat:

    • Butter

    • Yogurt

    • Mayonnaise

    Now the hard part about fat is that many of the sources I just listed also happen to be excellent sources of protein.

    So if a high protein diet is what you want, cutting out milk, cheese, and eggs probably isnt the way to go!

    But there are a few tweaks you can make to ensure youre still getting some healthy fats in your diet and bumping up the protein a bit, without adding extra calories:

    Cut back on your fat intake and replace those calories with some good, low calorie sources of protein.

    You dont have to go low carb or low fat.

    If you just watch your carbs and fat even a little tiny bit, you should easily be able to add 20-30g of protein per day into your diet without altering your calories.

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