What Foods To Eat On A High Protein Diet

What Is A High

Healthy Food Advice : High Protein Foods to Eat

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:

High Protein Diet Vs Ketogenic Diet

A high protein diet can include carbs or not. Reducing or even eliminating carbohydrates will send your body into ketosis, which is a whole different nutrition plan. If youre interested in the ketogenic diet, do some research so you have a full understanding of the diet. This high protein diet is not advocating eliminating carbs, but simply increasing protein in ratio to what else you eat in a day.

A brief lesson on macronutrients: carbohydrates and protein each have 4 calories per gram. Fat has 9 calories per gram. This means if youre shooting for a 2,000 calorie diet, lets say 150g comes from protein, 250g comes from carbs, and 50g comes from fat. Thats 2,050 calories. Some peoples bodies do better with higher fat, some with higher carbs.

Try this out: Set a consistent daily protein intake . Then experiment with different levels of carbs and fats. I wouldnt go lower than 20g of fat, since fat is responsible for testosterone and mood.

One thing to note, if youre trying to lose weight, eating carbohydrates can be more filling than eating fats. A cup of brown rice is 216 calories, 2 teaspoons of olive oil is 238 calories. What would fill you up more? When trying to lose weight and operate in a caloric deficit, its all about still eating as much food as you can and feeling as full as you can. This helps prevent the hungry feeling associated with dieting.

Apple With Peanut Butter

Apples and peanut butter taste great together and make for a nutrient-dense, high protein snack that provides many health benefits.

The fiber and antioxidants in apples may improve gut health and reduce the risk of heart disease, while peanut butter has been shown to increase HDL cholesterol and reduce LDL cholesterol and triglycerides .

Despite the positive effects that peanut butter may have on your health, its fairly high in calories, so its best consumed in moderation.

A snack of a medium apple with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter provides 4 grams of protein, as well as some nutrients like vitamin C and potassium .

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The High Protein Food List

If you are looking for a comprehensive with their calories and protein grams,

  • Eggs 1 egg, has 7 grams, but egg whites have 4 grams per egg. They can add up fast without many calories. I like to eat a full cup of egg whites for breakfast)
  • Greek yogurt 18-25 grams per cup
  • Cottage cheese 18-25 grams per cup
  • Chicken breasts 4 ounces 25 grams
  • Rotisserie chicken
  • Steak
  • Almonds
  • Ground turkey
  • Beans
  • Edamame
  • Lunch meat
  • Protein pancakes
  • Protein powder/ protein bars . I have lots of recipes with protein powder like protein crepes, protein ice cream, protein fluff, and my favorite homemade protein bars.
  • Peanut butter powder Im going to do a post soon about using this, because Ive been loving it for a low fat, high protein snack! This is the brand I use.
  • String cheese
  • Quinoa
  • Chickpeas 1 cup has 12 grams
  • Tuna
  • Peanut butter or almond butter
  • Salmon
  • Tilapia
  • Pork loin
  • High protein breads
  • Turkey jerky
  • What Foods Are The Best Source Of Protein

    A High

    Ideally, consuming proteins from a variety of sources is the best strategy. When you vary your protein, you are able to get a wide range of nutrients that assist your body in using the protein.

    If you are counting calories however, the proteins with the lowest calories are the foods where there arent other macronutrients, such as carbs or fat. For example, nuts have more calories per gram of protein because it also comes with fats. Milk will have more calories per gram of protein because it has carbohydrates in addition to protein.

    Lean meats, where there is virtually little fat or carbs, will have the most protein per calorie.

    Below youll find a full list of calories plus grams of protein for each high protein item listed! or bookmark this page.

    Recommended Reading: Max Carbs On Atkins Diet

    When To Avoid Protein Shakes

    If youre trying to lose weight and are therefore operating in the caloric deficit mentioned above, you might want to avoid protein shakes. Its generally easier to drink calories than eat calories because liquids are less filling. If youre restricting calories the last thing you want is to eat food thats less filling! A large salad with lots of greens and grilled chicken or tofu is going to leave you fuller and longer compared to a shake.

    Its all personal preference, but try for whole foods first and see how you feel. If youre not trying to lose weight and instead have the opposite problem then a protein shake can be an excellent addition to your nutrition plan. Shakes deliver 25 to 50 grams of protein and are easy to consume compared to another 6 oz of chicken or cup of beans. They also have the benefit of being easy to consume post-workout, especially if you work out in the middle of the day.

    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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    Who Can Follow A High Protein Low Carb Diet

    A high protein low carb diet is not for everybody and is by no means proven as the best way to lose weight.

    However, studies have suggested that for some people, this type of diet is an effective way to reduce fat and weight. It is particularly useful to kick start weight loss in those who are morbidly obese.

    High protein diets may contribute to weight loss in a variety of ways. For example, it has been suggested that by reducing carbohydrates, the brain may receive less hunger stimulating hormones, resulting in a reduced appetite.

    Hint: Try the CalorieSecrets Diet

    What It Is And How To Do It

    High-protein diets: What you need to get started

    You may have heard that high-protein diets can help with weight loss and metabolic health. Thats why, at Diet Doctor, we feature high-protein recipes and meal plans. But how do you know if a higher protein diet is right for you?

    This guide will explain what high-protein diets are, help you find the best high-protein foods, and explore the potential benefits of high-protein diets.

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    On A Diet Eat Whole Wheat Bread Pasta And Grains

    “Many of my clients fear eating bread when we first start working towards their health goals, but bread can be part of a balanced diet,” says Kearney. “The glucose from bread and other carbohydrates is the body’s main source of energy and also helps support brain function. Pairing a slice of whole wheat toast with avocado and an egg is a great breakfast option as it contains healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and protein.”

    High Protein Diets Work Because

    High protein diets have been shown to increase satiety, and result in the consumption of less calories in followers, which in turn leads to weight loss.

    Initial weight loss on a low carb diet may be due to water loss, which can be caused by a high protein intake.

    In many people, weight loss may also be seen simply due to a reduction in calories when carbohydrates are eliminated from the diet.

    Often people do not replace carbohydrate parts of a meal, but simply skip them, which of course results in a lower calorie intake.

    This can be a substantial reduction, as high carb foods such as pasta, potatoes and rice are often eaten in large portion sizes.

    Read Also: How Does Dieting Make You Fat

    What Is A High Protein Diet

    Our bodies need protein to help our cells grow and repair themselves. Protein also helps us fight infection and keeps our hair and nails strong.

    Protein is found naturally in all animal products like meat, fish, dairy products and eggs.

    In general, high protein diets are similar to low-carb diets in that they are diets that work fast to offer good results.

    Just like with the Atkins diet, you reduce the amounts of carbohydrates like bread and pasta youre eating and increase how much meat, fish, eggs and dairy products you eat instead.

    Protein makes up 10-15 per cent of most peoples diets. A high protein diet is one where you get about 30 to 40 per cent of your daily calories from protein.

    Top 10 Foods Highest In Protein


    Protein is a macronutrient that forms the building blocks of the human body. It is necessary for the growth and repair of all tissues, along with many other functions including forming hormones and enzymes. A deficiency in protein leads to muscle atrophy and impaired functioning of the body in general.

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    Who Is A High

    There are a number of reasons a doctor, dietitian or other medical professional might recommend a high-protein diet. One is for athletic performance. If youre an athlete or tend to get a lot of physical activity, you may need anywhere from 1.2 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, said Zeratsky.

    She noted that the high end of that range would be considered a very high-protein diet. Its quite honestly a challenge to eat that much protein in a day, she said.

    For that same 150-pound person, that very high-protein diet would have that person eating 136 grams of protein per day or about 45 grams of protein per each of the three meals in a day. If you had an egg and two egg whites , a glass of milk and some fruit , youd still need 16 additional grams of protein to hit that mark, said Zeratsky.

    There are some other medical reasons someone might need to go on a high-protein diet, including undergoing treatment for cancer or wound healing. People with kidney problems who are on dialysis may also need to go on a high-protein diet because the treatment filters protein from the body along with other waste. And sometimes a medical provider might recommend a high-protein diet to older individuals because it can help maintain muscle mass, which deteriorates with age, Zeratsky said.

    What I Usually Eat To Get 100 Grams Of Protein In My Day

    I recently wrote about my 1200 calorie day, and there was 116 grams of protein by the end of the day. You can see that 1200 calorie day here. But, usually, I try to get 25 grams spread out of four meals. A typical day will look like this:

  • Eggs for breakfast
  • Rotisserie chicken wrap
  • Peanut butter and an apple
  • Greek yogurt with fruit
  • Stir fry 25 grams
  • Let me know what some of your favorite ways to get more protein is!

    For more high protein ideas, follow my high protein meal ideas board on Pinterest!

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    Beans Lentils Peas & Soy

    Legumes beans, lentils, peas, seeds, and soy are a good source of protein and provide other essential nutrients. Yes, most are higher in carbs than the other foods on this list. However, theyre also high in fiber. Plus, as an excellent source of plant-based protein, legumes are perfect for vegetarian and vegan weight-loss diets.

    One review of 21 trials found that people who included beans, lentils, and other legumes in their diet lost a small amount of weight without deliberately restricting calories.16

    Additionally, consuming soy products has been shown to help reduce appetite and support weight loss in several studies.17

    While soy is considered a complete protein, beans and legumes are low in one or more of the essential amino acids that you need to eat to stay healthy.18 The good news is, combining different plant proteins, such as beans and nuts, can provide adequate amounts of all the essential amino acids your body needs.19

    Plant protein powder supplements are processed, so they lack the fiber found in whole foods. However, they are a good option for getting more protein with fewer carbs. For this reason, you may want to consider occasionally including plant protein powders if youre a vegetarian or vegan who eats keto or low carb.

    Protein percentage range: 80% to 26%

    What Science Says About Eating A High

    High Protein Foods To Burn Fat I High protein diet weight loss

    Everyone needs protein in their diet. Protein is important for satiety, minimizing feelings of hunger, preserving lean body mass and helping protect against muscle loss as you age , Marisa Moore, a registered dietitian based in Atlanta, Georgia, told TODAY. While many people use high-protein diets for weight loss, the results are often short-term, she said.

    Scientific evidence suggests that rather than total amount of protein in your diet, its the type of protein youre consuming that really matters for long-term health. Research suggests that eating large quantities of red meat is linked to higher risks of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and early death, but replacing these foods with other protein sources, like nuts, seeds, legumes and fish can reduce these risks. A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition also found that consuming higher amounts of animal protein may be linked to increased risk of premature death.

    Similarly, when it comes to weight loss, research suggests that the type of protein that’s being consumed is more important than overall quantity when trying to lose weight and keep it off. Researchers at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health found that people who tend to eat leaner and plant-based protein sources have better weight-loss outcomes than those who eat more red and processed meat, chicken with skin and full-fat cheese.

    And its worth noting that in the U.S., adults generally consume more than enough protein, Barnard said.

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    How Much Protein Is Too Much

    Anything 2-3 times the recommended amount of protein is considered too much.

    Have you ever wondered what happens if you eat too much protein?

    As the adage goes, too much of a good thing can be bad for you. If youre eating too much protein, your health could suffer from a number of side effects of protein.

    The symptoms related to overeating protein include:

    • Dehydration
    • Cancer
    • Osteoporosis

    As long as you keep your daily protein intake within the range , youre good.

    What Does Protein Do In The Body

    There are thousands of different proteins in the body that have a huge variety of roles, in our organs like our brain, heart and liver, the antibodies in our immune system and the haemoglobin that carries oxygen in our blood. Protein is important for childrens muscles and bones as they are growing, and also to keep our muscles and bones healthy throughout life.

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    Other Beneficial Effects Of Protein

    In addition to its favorable effects on weight, protein may help improve health in several other ways:

    • Increase muscle mass: Studies have shown a higher protein intake can increase muscle size and strength when combined with resistance training .
    • Reduce muscle loss during aging: Many people lose muscle as they age. One study found that adding a daily protein shake helped protect muscle health in healthy older men and those with age-related muscle loss .
    • Strengthen bones: Higher protein intake may promote bone health. In one study, older women with the highest intake of animal protein experienced a whopping 69% reduced risk of hip fracture .
    • Improve wound healing: Studies have shown that high-protein diets can enhance the healing of wounds related to surgery or injury, including bedsores .


    Research suggests a high protein intake can help build muscle, protect against bone and muscle loss during aging and improve wound healing.

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