Protein, Ya Need It

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone had a super week and that you have an awesome weekend planned.

My Friday was super! I started with my weigh in for the end of Pledge 20’s first week. I’m pleased to report a 4.6 pound weight loss!! YAY! I’m already prepared for next week to be lower though LOL. 16 more to go and I couldn’t be happier. If you’d like to Pledge 20, which is my mission to lose 20 pounds by March 1st, simply email, Tweet, or Facebook your Pledge. You can start anytime and Pledge to lose more or less than 20, whatever works for you. If emailing Pledge send to: girlgonehealthy@hotmail.comThanks! I also put in some serious cardio this morning. I did Paula K’s crazy track star interval from Monday….I hurt… 🙁 .

As for my weekend plans I will be attending the special 1 and half hour ZUMBA spectacular tomorrow afternoon at Fit World! It starts at 12pm, so stop by! Fit World will be bringing back their AWESOME enrollment deal for ONE DAY ONLY!

TOMORROW, Saturday January 9th from 12 to 5pm!!!

You can join Fit World of Cranston for $0 down and $29 a month!!! That’s a $1 a day to change your life!  Check out http://www.fitworldri.com/ for more details!

Phone: (401) 464-4055
Information: info@fitworldri.com

On Saturday, January 9th there will be prizes and some very nice surprises 😉 during that 12 to 5p time frame! Want a hint to the surprise?

Singer Jordan Knight of New Kids On The Block performs on NBC's "Today" show at Rockefeller Center on May 8, 2009 in New York City.  (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Jordan Knight

Ok and I will be there too, LOL! I would love to meet you and take you on a tour of Rhode Island’s newest state of the art facility! Hope to see you there!!!

On to some eda-ma-cation….LOL that’s Larry the Cable Guy talk! Translation, Education!

Ok ok…tonight’s informational session will be on Protein! Like last night’s Fiber post I think you will be quite surprised as to where you can find protein sources. I have even found some nice protein rich foods for our Vegans/Vegetarians! Yea! I hope you enjoy the info I have collected, and as always if you have any further thoughts, comments, complaints or concerns please email them to me or comment below! Here we go….

Researchers suggest that higher-protein diets help people better control their appetites and calorie intake. Diets higher in protein and moderate in carbs, along with a lifestyle of regular exercise are often purported by experts to reduce blood fats and maintain lean tissue while burning fat for fuel without dieters being sidetracked with constant hunger. Researchers don’t understand exactly how protein works to turn down appetite. They surmise that it may be because a high-protein diet causes the brain to receive lower levels of appetite-stimulating hormones. It may be due to eating fewer carbs and/or the specific protein effect on hunger hormones and brain chemistry. More research is needed before experts can make sweeping recommendations that people boost the protein in their diets, according to the American Dietetic Association.

How Much Do You Need?

We need protein at all stages of life, for a variety of bodily functions. It’s the major component of all cells, including muscle and bone. It’s needed for growth, development, and immunity to fight off infections and protect the body. The Institute of Health’s Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) recommendations allow for a wide range of protein intake – anywhere from 10% to 35% of total calories – for normal, healthy adults. For example, on an 1,800 calorie diet, you could safely consume anywhere from 45 grams (that’s 10% of calories) to 218 grams (35%) of protein per day. However, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is 56 grams a day for men and 46 grams a day for women. Most Americans have no problem getting this much, but would struggle to take in enough protein to make up 35% of their calories. That said, is it possible to eat too much protein? There are no dangers associated with higher intakes of protein – unless you have kidney disease. To get the potential weight loss benefit, experts advise aiming for around 120 grams of protein a day. If you want to increase your protein intake, do it slowly over the course of a week. To be on the safe side, check with your doctor before adding large amounts of protein to your diet.

The Best Protein Sources

Protein is important but so are carbohydrates, fats, and total calories.

For a higher protein diet, include lean and low-fat sources of protein at every meal as part of a calorie-controlled diet. You should also stock up on ‘smart carbs’ such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, along with healthy fats like nuts, seeds, olives, oils, fish, and avocado.

Not all protein is created equal. Be sure to look for protein sources that are nutrient-rich and lower in fat and calories, such as lean meats, beans, soy, and low-fat dairy.

Here are some good sources of protein, as listed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture:

Food Protein grams
1 ounce meat, fish, poultry 7
1 large egg 6
4 ounces milk 4
4 ounces low-fat yogurt 6
4 ounces soy milk 5
3 ounces tofu, firm 13
1 ounce cheese 7
1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese 14
1/2 cup cooked kidney beans 7
1/2 cup lentils 9
1 ounce nuts 7
2 tablespoons peanut butter 8
1/2 cup vegetables 2
1 slice bread 2
1/2 cup of most grains/pastas 2

8 Ways to Pump Up the Protein

If you’d like to start including more lean protein in your daily diet, try these eight simple tips:

  • Take yogurt with you to the gym and enjoy it as a post-workout booster.
  • Make your breakfast oatmeal with milk instead of water.
  • Snack on fat-free mozzarella cheese.
  • Use a whole cup of milk on your cereal.
  • Try smoked salmon or one of the new lean sausages for breakfast.
  • Take along a hard-boiled egg for an easy snack.
  • Munch on edamame beans at meals and snacks.
  • Choose round or tenderloin cuts of meat.

(All Info above collected via WebMD)

Protein-rich foods for vegetarian athletes:

1. Cowpeas and leafy tips that are cooked and drained (may be added with salt)
2. Raw and fresh egg whites
3. Cheeses such as cottage cheese, non-creamed cheese, dry cheese, and non-fat cheese
4. Dried seaweed and spirulina
5. Extra-Firm or Silken-Lite Mori-Nu Tofu
6. Soy sauce from tamari
7. Low-fat, 1% milk-fat cottage cheese
8. Lite-Firm Mori-Nu Tofu
9. Raw pumpkin leaves
10. Nuts and seeds such as cashew nuts, walnuts, and almonds

The following are the top 10 animal-based and plant-based protein foods:

1. Red meat such as beef, pork, and liver
2. White meat such as chicken and fish
3. Eggs and dairy products such as:
a. Hard cheeses including Parmesan
b. Soft cheeses such as Mozzarella, Brie, and Camembert
c. Medium cheeses such as cheddar and Swiss
d. Yogurt
e. Cottage cheese
f. Milk
g. Eggs
4. Legumes – These are edible dried beans (seedpods) such as chickpeas, flagelot beans, kidney beans, split beans, haricot beans, and lentils. They are rich sources of protein.
5. Nuts and seeds – Over the years, nuts and seeds have been among the best sources of protein. Examples of nuts are almonds, cashew nuts, peanuts, and walnuts. These can be served chopped, raw, or roasted.
6. Cereals and food grains – Eating protein-rich cooked grains promotes muscle building.
7. Algae – A type of seaweed, spirulina is among the best protein-rich foods there are.
8. Fruits – With today’s technology, fruits can be eaten canned, frozen, or dried. Regardless of how they are prepared, fruits are still nutritious and included in the list of protein-rich foods.
9. Vegetables – Laden with protein, vitamins, and minerals, vegetables are known to be among the best foods for staying healthy.
10. Seitan – Seitan is a meat substitute. It is prepared from whole-wheat flour mixed with sufficient amount of water, kneaded and rinsed in water, expelling starch and bran. The protein is simmered in a soya sauce to become seitan. Seitan broth can be added as flavoring.

So see there, something for EVERYONE! It’s amazing how your sense of well being will change just making slight adjustments to your diet. If you are training and hitting the gym regularly then YOU NEED PROTEIN! You need to assist those muscles in recovery post work out. So be prepared and have a protein fortified snack ready to munch ASAP!

All right guys and dolls, I’m signing off for now. I have laundry to fold and I need to rest up so I can shake it like a salt shaker tomorrow! Plus the wonderful world of kitchen remodeling starts back up tomorrow, Lord help me because I hate the chaos! Have a wonderful night, and don’t let the weekend be a Cheat-end!!! Stay focused!!!

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