Protein contains all the essential amino acids necessary to help your body rebuild and recover, and is therefore one of the most important macronutrients when it comes to changing your body composition.
For those trying to lose body fat when consuming protein, know that your body will burn 20-35% of the calories just trying to break it down. When our bodies have enough protein we are in a positive nitrogen balanced state. The more we are in this state the more muscle we will build. However in order to accomplish that we must be consuming an adequate amount of protein each day.
I definitely eat enough protein. How sure are you about that? Many people brag about how much protein they consume. However, once I tell them to measure and track their protein intake they always come back and tell me how they were not eating enough. If your goal is 200g of protein a day and you’re only eating 125g a day, over time your gains will stall.
It’s easy to get bored with the same protein foods day in and day out. Adding seasonings or your favorite condiments can help put some life back into the same old dishes. Try using a variety of seasonings, ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, low-fat dressings or even some good old fashion lemon juice. If your condiment contains calories be sure to add those calories into your calorie goal for the day.
Don’t be afraid to eat something outside of the norm. If you eat chicken everyday maybe switch it up and have a hamburger or bison burger. Adding in different protein sources will help refresh your tastes buds. If you’re getting sick of eating chicken breast, change it up and keep it off your menu for a week. Every protein has a different amino acid profile, so changing it up often will allow for your body to get an array of muscle building amino acids.
When in doubt, double down. Don’t be afraid to double up on the protein servings during some of your meals. Our bodies can assimilate 25-100g of protein per meal, if you’re short on protein for the day, add an extra chicken breast to your lunch or double up on the eggwhites. You can even mix and match your protein sources in a meal. A good old fashion surf and turf will really help to put you in a positive nitrogen state.
Don’t feel like eating? Grab a shake. Protein shakes are a great and convenient way to get a low fat source of protein in quick. It requires no effort to add 2 scoops of protein to a shaker bottle and add water. Protein powders are great for protein on the go and ideal for post workout. Another way I use protein powder is if the meal I am consuming contains a smaller amount of protein then I am used to. If I need more I will just mix up one scoop and have that with my meal. Each scoop of protein powder contains roughly 25g of protein.
Anthony Bevilacqua has been involved in the health and fitness industry as a world class trainer and nutritionist for over a decade. Anthony specializes in coaching people online; he has coached natural bodybuilders, figure and fitness models, powerlifter’s, armed forces, police/firemen and the average Joe. Anthony is also a competitive lifetime natural bodybuilder. For more information on him visit his website: www.abfitnesstrainer.com