Proteins, which are made up of amino acids, are the building blocks for your body. Protein helps children grow and helps build and maintain muscle mass in adults.
If you want to build muscle, a substantial level of protein intake is important. Ladies often wrongly worry that they will bulk up and lose their feminine look. Not true. Plus, avoiding weight training makes losing unwanted pounds more difficult, because even moderate toning will up your metabolism 24 hours a day (muscle burns more calories).
With the help of eDiets.com‘s Chief Fitness Pro Raphael Calzadilla, I’ve put together seven high protein sources that will ensure you get your daily dose in a healthy manner:
1. Egg whites – They may not be as tasty as the whole egg, but they are an efficient protein source.
“Egg whites are an excellent source of protein, because the protein is instantly absorbed by your body,” says Raphael. “They also have no fat and no cholesterol.”
2. Whole egg – For years, fear of the cholesterol in egg yolk has made people shy away from this wonderful source of protein. But in moderation, you have nothing to worry about.
Even though the yolk is high in cholesterol, it is also higher in protein than the egg whites. One of the best sources of protein is the yolk in the egg. A Harvard study, published in The Journal of the American Medical Association showed eating an egg a day did not raise the risk of heart disease.
3. Steak – Beef… it’s what’s for dinner… and it’s what’s for muscles if you want more of them. And not just protein, but creatine and iron and iron as well.
4. Chicken – Prefer something a little leaner? Chicken is a mainstay in bodybuilder’s diets. Lean cuts of chicken breast have 28 grams of protein, no carbs and only 2 grams of fat.
5. Tuna – Have you ever seen those dedicated gym rats eating tuna right out of the can? It may seem a little crude, but tuna is a hit for muscle gain, and the convenience outweighs the “lack of decorum.” Higher consumption of fish is associated with a reduced risk of some types of stroke among middle-aged women, according to an article in the January 17 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association.
6. Cottage cheese – Guys, don’t let your egos get in the way. This may be a staple of women’s diets, but there’s nothing wimpy about eating this high-protein food.
“Protein in cottage cheese is of extremely high quality and contains all of the essential amino acids (building blocks of protein) in the amounts proportional to the body’s needs,” says Raphael.
7. Salmon – If you get sick of tuna, but still want to get your protein from the sea, salmon is a great alternative. Postpone your appointment with St. Peter at the Pearly Gates by consuming this omega-3-rich fish.