Is Protein the Key to Weight Loss?
Food for Living Blog
I’ve been doing so much cooking lately while I’m designing recipes for my meal plans that I’ve been thinking about the most important principles of eating for health.
At the same time I have been writing the content for my blog series on losing weight. So I’ve decided to tie it all together to talk about the important of protein in weight and health management.
Proteins are the building blocks to life. In the body they are responsible for:
- Building tissues and muscles
- Building neurotransmitters and hormones (helping with mood, memory and feeling good)
- Used in Repair of tissues
But in addition to these essential functions, I find protein consumption can be very beneficial in terms of Â weight loss.
The best protein sources are correctly portioned beans/lentils, low fat dairy, nuts and seeds and lean meats such as chicken and turkey and fish.
Plant based protein such as beans/lentils and nuts/seeds can be full of health promoting fibre. Choosing leaner and lower fat animal sources of protein can reduce the amount of saturated fat consumed.
So why can protein be good for weight loss?
Firstly, protein can help you feel satisfied after a meal. This can lead to a reduction in unhealthy snacking a few hours after a meal.
Secondly, protein is quite a difficult substance to breakdown. When mixed with carbohydrate, it can slow the release of sugars into a system, keeping your energy levels balanced.
It is normal for people to have protein with their dinner – perhaps some meat, fish or beans. However, people are less likely to have protein to their breakfast or lunch. Try it yourself. Add a source of protein to your breakfast such as an egg, some yogurt or some nuts and seeds and FEEL the difference in our energy levels later in the day. It really helps.
I got a huge response from posting this photo the other day so will add this balanced recipe as a meal option. This is a great weekend breakfast or a cool summer’s evening supper. Enjoy!
Baked Beans Hot Pot
2 spring onions – sliced
1 clove garlic – crushed
2 cups of cherry tomatoes – halved
1 cup of passata (if you don’t have just add a dash of water instead)
1tbsp of tomato paste
1/2 tin of haricot beans (washed and drained)
100g baby spinach(washed and drained)
1 handful of grated parmesan
Chop the onions and garlic and set aside for 5 minutes before cooking.
Saute the onions in a little water in a large frying pan. Keep the heat on medium.
Add the garlic and stir for a minute.
Add the cherry tomatoes and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
Then stir in the tomato paste and the passata, along with the beans. I season with a little salt and pepper at this point.
Cook for 5-10 minutes. If you feel its getting a little dry, add some water.
Add the spinach and stir through. Make a small hole in the centre.
Crack in the egg into the little hole and cover with the parmesan.
Put under a hot grill for about 5 minutes and serve straight away.
If you are dairy intolerant, you can remove the egg or parmesan and it is just as tasty.
Wheat free, gluten free, sugar free
Hope you enjoyed this post. Remember that keeping on top of your health and eating habits takes ongoing support and motivation.
Do you want to develop a balanced diet plan to suit your health and lifestyle? My healthy eating update service might be just what you need: Lucy's Living Digest.
Or if you are looking for more of a plan than a one-off recipe, try one of my specially designed meal pans Lucy's Meal Plans giving you everything you need to stay on track