Exercise is a fundamental part of the process to getting in shape and losing weight, but nutrition has a crucial role in getting results and both go hand in hand.
Too many people focus on eliminating foods such as carbs and not focusing on actually increasing what they are not getting enough of, which is usually Protein.
One of the best starting points when looking at your nutrition, would be to focus on making sure you are getting enough protein.
Having enough protein:
Keeps you satisfied and saves calories. Because Protein is slow to digest we stay fuller for longer and are less likely to go back for seconds (which means you will eat less food throughout the day and therefore consume less overall calories)
Prevents cravings. Pairing protein with our carbohydrates helps to slow down the absorption of sugar from your stomach into your bloodstream which can prevent blood sugars peaking and crashing, thus preventing cravings.
Helps repair, maintain and build muscle mass. Having muscle in our body causes us to burn calories. The more muscle mass we have the more we calories we burn on a daily basis. This is also known as having ‘a faster metabolism’, and illustrates is why weight training is the most effective form of exercise for burning calories long term.
It requires more energy. Protein has a higher TEF (thermogenic effect of food) than carbs & fats. This means it requires more energy to break down than other foods and thus decreases your chance of being in a calorie surplus. (20-30% of calories consumed form protein go towards digesting it!)
So now that we know WHY we need to eat more protein - HOW much should we be eating??
You should aim to have 1.5g -2g per 1kg bodyweight
Eg. A 70kg individual should aim to consume 105g-140g per day
The best way to reach your daily protein goal is to :
Have protein in EACH meal.
Aim to have 20g-40g of protein per meal
Have 1-3 protein snacks (containing 10-20g protein) - depending on your overall calorie allowance.
This approach should help you reach your goal range of 1.5g - 2g per 1KG bodyweight.
So what does 25g of protein look like?
8 Egg Whites (or 4 whole, which also contains 18g fats.
120g Chicken Breast
120g Ground Turkey
120g Lean Mince beef
120g Grilled White Fish
120g Salmon Fillet
170g Plain Greek Yoghurt
30g Scoop Whey Protein
1 Protein Bar (Fulfil / Grenade
Make it your priority this week to start getting enough protein in your diet.
You can calculate this yourself - goal range of 1.5g - 2g per 1KG bodyweight.