Are you ready to unleash the power of protein to slim down and stay fuller, longer? Protein is a necessary nutrient, a building block of life. Without enough of it, our bodies cannot recover from all those killer workouts you are doing. By incorporating these foods into your diet, you will never have a stomach rumble again while try to slim down and get healthy.
1. Pork loin
28 grams per 3 oz serving
Though beef also has 28 grams of protein per 3 oz serving, pork has a number of health benefits and can be slow-roasted, barbecued, breaded, and baked at lower temperatures. See, when animal proteins are cooked a super-high heat, like that of a grill, chemicals called heterocyclic amines (HCAs) are released.
When you eat too much of that (as in, too many grilled steaks and burgers), the HCAs alter gut bacteria and may lead to cancer. So, case in point, pulled pork, tenderloin, and slow-cooked pork loin is the healthier alternative.
2. Turkey breast
26 grams per 3 oz serving
Yes, eating the gobble stops the wobble. Turkey contains way more protein than chicken, which only has 16 grams per serving. Like chicken, there are an infinite number of ways to use turkey in your diet, from slow-roasted sandwiches, turkey burgers, turkey chili, and turkey meatloaf or meatballs. Definitely, a healthy swap to make once in awhile.
22 grams per 3 oz filet
Move over tuna and salmon, halibut is coming upstream and overtaking you two as protein kind. Lesser known than some other fish filets out there, halibut is a delicious, flaky fish with a low level of contaminants (always go for wild caught, just to be safe).
Halibut delivers 1 gram of protein per 4.5 calories, making it lean, metabolism-boosting star. If you do not like the flavor of halibut, try snapper, perch, and cod, which are very similar on the nutritional scale.
4. Yogurt, milk, and soymilk
1 gram protein per 9.3 calories
You get around 14 to 20 grams of protein per 1 cup serving of yogurt, milk, or soy-based milk products. Expect Greek yogurt, skyr, and kefir to have slightly more protein than regular variations. For skim and soy milk, you get 8 grams of protein in a 1 cup serving (245 grams).
16 grams per ½ cup
Behold, the bulkier brother of tofu. However, unlike tofu, tempeh is made out of soybeans, not soy milk, meaning it goes through less processing. Because it is closer to whole food than tofu, tempeh has 50% more protein per serving.
This hearty protein source is great pan fried, baked, or shaved down for sandwiches. You can also marinate it and grill it up like you would a carnivore’s steak.
9 grams per ¼ cup
Despite the bad rep peanuts get for being high in fat, they are protein powerhouses. Peanuts can be incorporated into a number of dishes, not just as peanut butter either. You can put them in baked goods, top yogurt, blend into oatmeal, or even use in Asian cooking.
Pad thai, for example, would not be pad thai without the crunch of crumbled peanuts. If you are allergic to peanuts, other nuts, like pistachios (6.5 grams), cashews (5 grams), and almonds (8 grams) are wonderful sources of protein with many uses.
8g per tablespoon
Do not let the fact that spirulina is blue-green algae sway you from giving it a go. When dried and powdered, this food is 60 percent protein and has a complete amino acid profile like quinoa.
In other words, spirulina is immediately converted over to muscle-building and recovery power upon digestion. A single tablespoon delivers 8 grams of protein for a mere 45 calories, as well as half the day’s recommended intake of vitamin B12. Put it in a smoothie or make green eggs and ham.
6g per ½ cup serving
Plain hummus is made out of chickpeas and olive oil, which is about as healthy as healthy can get. Other options out there blend in different flavors, like garlic, carrots, peppers, and more. Enjoy dipping in pita chips, baby carrots, broccoli, green beans, and more. No guilt here! Though calorie dense, hummus is one thing you will not mind indulging in.
6g protein per large egg
Here is a fun fact: 1 cup of scrambled eggs provides 22g of delicious protein. While most of the protein is in the egg white (two-thirds in fact), you do not have to skip the yolk either. That yellow sun is the best dietary source of choline, a B vitamin that Americans simply do not get enough of.
Choline deficiency is actually linked to visceral fat accumulation, which is bad for the organs. So be sure to eat your eggs. Go the Asian route and put fried eggs on top of rice, or put some egg whites in your pancake batter. There are hundreds of recipes to get your thinking creatively with eggs.
10. Japanese soba noodles
5.8g of protein per cup, cooked
Soba noodles are made with buckwheat and can be used in a number of noodle and pasta dishes. They have a nutty flavor that stands out well in a variety of sauces. For only 113 calories per cup serving, you also get 24 grams of slow-digesting carbohydrates.
A popular serving style in Asia is to pan-fry the noodles then mix them with other foods on this list, like eggs, pork, and tempeh. Be sure to add in slivers of peppers and carrots for a truly balanced dish.