Protein is so important for our bodies because there are 9 essential amino acids (EAA’s) in protein that we need to get from food as our bodies are unable to produce them. A complete protein is a protein that contains all 9 of these essential amino acids, whereas incomplete proteins do not.
Typical complete protein sources are: meats, fish, eggs and dairy. Less well-known sources of protein are quinoa, soybeans and mushroom based products like Quorn. Incomplete protein sources include vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts and seeds. Pair or group some of the incomplete protein sources together throughout the day, and you will have more complete protein sources.
Ever wonder why beans and rice is such a great meal? Protein!
Most of us get more protein than we think, however that still means that there are many us eating a lot less protein than we think!
For those who eat meat and fish ensure that you are getting the right balance, by aiming for the following:
With the extra protein intake from other food sources, this should give you an adequate daily intake. This of course becomes trickier if you do not eat meat or fish. Eggs are a great source of protein, but you have to be mindful of the fat content – even though it is healthy, it can still rack up the calories.
For those still struggling to get enough protein into their day, there is always the option of trying a protein powder. Whey/pea/rice protein is a cheap and convenient way to add protein to your diet via smoothies and other recipes.
It is however important to research brands and their ingredients to get the best quality within your budget. A pretty label with a super fit model on the front does not equal a great quality protein! Chat to us at the Chichester gym for nutritional advice or a full nutrition programme if you are unsure, need results or want to find out more.
Here are a few good options to explore: