I’m kinda of a “protein pusher”.
It’s the one macro-nutrient that women don’t get enough of.
Somehow, we get enough carbs and fat, but the protein…eh, not so much.
When protein is in it’s “meat, fish, or egg” form it takes more planning to prepare, make and it takes longer to eat, too.
I think those are the biggest reasons WHY we don’t get enough protein in our diet.
That is why I often use protein powder and have shakes – it’s fast, easy, convenient and tasty!
So, here are 5 Reasons Why You Need Protein:
- It helps you feel full longer so you’re not thinking about food every two hours.
- It slows the digestion of your starchy carbs. This prevents your insulin from rising too quickly and too high and preventing those “blood sugar crashes” and fat storage.
- Protein burns more calories when you digest them. Yeah, how cool is that – you burn calories by eating 🙂
- If you are lifting weights, you need protein for repair and recovery of muscle tissue.
- If you are in a calorie deficit because you are trying to lose weight, you need to eat protein to prevent muscle loss. (when you “diet” only and don’t exercise you lose fat AND muscle – a much higher percent of muscle is lost with diet only strategies and then you just look the same shape only smaller )
How much do you need?
One palm-sized serving per meal every meal. I am for 20-30 grams of protein per meal for me and an average height woman.
Portion sizes can be smaller for snacks.
I often use a high quality protein powder (which I sell at the studio) when I’m in a hurry or haven’t prepped and even when I travel.
Food is always nice to eat, but sometimes, it just not an option 🙂 and a shake can make a full meal for just a couple of dollars.
Here’s a quick recipe I use:
- Chocolate Protein power
- Almond milk or water
- Frozen banana
- Big handful of spinach
- Drop or two vanilla extract
- Dash of cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp Almond Butter
Other lean protein options are : 1 egg/4 egg whites, 4 oz. chicken breast, 4 oz. 96% lean ground turkey, 6 oz. white fish, 4 oz. 100% grass fed beef.
If you don’t have a food scale, just use your hand to figure out how much you need.
Check out this infographic from Precision Nutrition that shows portion size using the size of your hand in different positions.