A healthy diet should always include a complex of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and essential fatty acids and if you want to lose weight, it needs to be low on fats and sugar at the same time. But don’t forget about proteins! Proteins are extremely important for building and maintaining muscles, but not only that, they’re essential for the growth and repair of your bones, skin, tendons, ligaments, hair, eyes and other tissues. Without it, you wouldn’t get the enzymes and hormones you need for metabolism, digestion and other important processes in your body. It is also necessary for the production of antibodies, which fight against infection and illness.
Proteins and weight loss
Quality protein helps you maintain muscle during weight loss, improves muscle fitness, helps with immunity, enhances antioxidant function, builds HDL Cholesterol, and enhances insulin and leptin function; all of these contribute toward optimal weight management efforts in time. If you decrease your carbohydrates intake and maintain a correct level of proteins in your diet, your weight loss plan should be fine. Generally speaking, your diet should include three-fourths of your ideal body weight in grams of protein per day, but your protein intake could go up to three-fourths of your actual weight in grams of protein per day. For instance, if your ideal weight is 150 pounds and your current weight is 200 pounds, then your goal for protein intake is in the range of 120 to 150 grams of protein per day. One gram of protein means four calories, therefore you should get around thirty percent of your daily calories from protein (based on a 2000 calorie diet).
Sources of proteins
It’s advisable that you get your complete proteins from animal foods such as meat, fish, shellfish, poultry and dairy produce. Eggs are an excellent source of protein as they contain the highest amount of essential amino acids. Fish is also a great source and is then followed by meat, milk, cereal, soya beans, oatmeal, rice, peas, lentils, kidney beans and wholemeal bread. It is recommended that you have a variety of protein-rich foods, including pulses, fish, vegetables, shellfish and lean meat, rather than just red meat or only dairy products, as some foods that contain high amounts of protein are also rich in saturated fat, which can be extremely unhealthy.