Why eating lean protein helps you lose weight?

Protein is one such important nutrient that can help your body largely function properly and help you lose some extra fat. A good quality protein taken in an appropriate amount can help boost your metabolism, suppress your appetite, and regulates your hormonal process which in turn can affect your weight in a positive way. On the other hand, while carbs and fats are easily absorbed by the body and may contribute to increased calorie intake.

In this article, we will cover three main aspects:

  1. How much protein required for weight loss
  2. Protein and its weight loss function
  3. Ways to increase protein in our diet

How much protein is required by our body to lose weight?

Normally, a sedentary person requires a minimum of 0.8g/kg body wt. to maintain proper wear and tear of the body. If your goal is to lose weight, you need to increase your protein intake to 1g/kg body wt.  Forex. If your weight is 70kgs, your protein intake should be a minimum of 70 gms of protein per day (70 kg * 1 gm). Substantial evidence exists that supports the consumption of increased dietary protein (ranging from 1.2 to 1.6 g protein) as a successful strategy to prevent or treat obesity through reductions in body weight and fat mass concomitant with the preservation of lean mass. (Heather L. et. al, 2005).

However, recent studies have also suggested that lower protein quantities i.e. 0.8 gms/kg. b.wt during energy restriction might be sufficient for body weight and fat mass loss, whereas higher protein quantities are required for the preservation of lean mass i.e. 1.2 gms/kg b.wt

More than 50% of protein should come from excellent sources like fish, chicken, milk, and milk products. Always consult qualified dietician, before improving on your protein intake to understand if you suffer from any disease or ailments which can restrict your protein intake.

The USDA defines lean meat as having less than 10 grams of total fat, 4.5 grams or less of saturated fat and fewer than 95 milligrams of cholesterol in a 3.5-ounce portion. Whey or Soy Protein can be one of the best lean protein options.

Lean Protein and it’s the weight loss function

Protein regulates your several hormonal processes

You brain determines your weight and how much to eat and when to stop. This area of your brain is known as Hypothalamus. Intake of high-quality protein can help improve your appetite by increasing hormones GLP-1, peptide YY, and cholecystokinin which are commonly called appetite-reducing hormones and reducing your levels of hunger hormone which is ghrelin. This is effective because hormones play a major role in giving signals to your brain.

Proteins got a higher thermic effect

In one of the studies, it was confirmed that the main effect of protein on energy balance is thought to be Diet-induced thermogenesis related satiety. Satiety scores were higher during meals with a high-protein/high-carbohydrate diet, as well as over 24 h, than with a high-fat diet. Dietary protein elicits a greater postprandial thermic effect of food than do carbohydrates and fats. In general, 20 – 30% of dietary protein is used for metabolism whereas carbohydrate and fat only 5 to 10 and 0 to 3%.

Protein burns your calories faster

Since protein affects your thermic effect and also regulates your hormonal process; it can improve your metabolism. This can help support your calories burning.

Protein suppresses your appetite

Protein can affect your hunger through various mechanisms. Few we have discussed above, and it was also covered in one of the studies, where increasing protein intake to 30% of calories led to a massive drop in calorie intake in 19 overweight individuals.

Reference: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16002798/

Ways to increase protein in our diet

Here are a few quick tips to increase your protein intake ways which can help in your weight loss regime:

  1. Add more servings of curd in your diet: 1 cup of curd will give you 10 grams of protein. Try including a minimum of 2 cups of curd or yogurt in your diet through smoothie, kadhi, buttermilk, adding fruits to the yogurt for a great snack.
  2. Include 2 to 3 servings of milk and milk products: Curd, we have included in our above point. Milk contains both whey and casein and you get benefits of both. Include other milk products like paneer, cheese, etc.
  3. Include protein supplements: It gets difficult to get all the protein required from the natural sources. Protein supplements can help you to bridge that gap and meet your goal or daily requirement. Whey Protein can be the best option in terms of digestion and better absorption.
  4. Add eggs in your breakfast: If you are ok having eggs, then don’t stop yourself from having it. Eggs are a great source of protein with 100% biological value. Include them in your diet in the form of poached, boiled, soft boiled, omelet rather than frying.
  5. Include protein in your snack: Keep a protein-rich snack with you handy – keep almonds, hummus, roasted chana, etc.
  6. Combine two incomplete proteins: Dairy and meat products are considered to be the complete proteins as compared to the plant protein. Complete proteins are those which consist of all the essential amino acids and incomplete proteins have less than one amino acid. So, when one incomplete protein combines with other providing that lacked amino acids can give you a complete protein. Forex. Cereals lack one amino acid called methionine and pulses lack one amino acid called lysine. If you combine these two, you can get a complete protein. Sounds technical, right? Well, let me give you simple example – Khichdi {made using dal(pulse) and rice (cereal)} or Idli Sambhar (Idli is made using rice and dal combined with sambhar which is a dal)

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