A diet high in protein can be effective for weight loss for the
· Boost metabolism. Protein has the highest thermogenic effect
of the three macronutrients. This means that the body spends
more of the calories from the meal to digest the protein
compared to fats and carbohydrates.
· Satiety. Protein aids satiety (satisfaction) and keeps you full
· Preservation of lean body mass. One of the consequences of
weight loss is the loss of lean body mass including muscles and
bone density. A high protein diet can help reduce the amount of
lean mass loss.
· Boost energy.
· Lowers insulin level and decrease insulin resistance. This is
true if there is a concomitant decrease in carbohydrate
· It helps to prevent osteoporosis.
Common sources of protein include meat, fish, dairy products,
nuts, and seeds. The limitation of these is high cholesterol
content in case of animal sources and high calories in case of
animal and plant sources. The following are easy ways to boost
your protein intake without consuming too many calories. What’s
more they are portable and can be taking with you anywhere.
Protein sources can be very useful as snacks or meal
replacements. They are a healthy substitute to snacks that high
in sugar and refined carbohydrates. The following is a limited list
of protein sources that are portable and handy.
Protein shakes: Protein shakes are a great way to get the protein
you need while limiting the calories and fat that usually
accompany typical sources of protein such as meat. Look at the
label to make sure the sugar content is not high.
Examples of portable snacks:
- Boiled eggs are high in vitamin B. As a snack, it can keep you
full in between meals.
- Roasted chickpeas are nutrient rich and a good source of fiber.
- Edamame are a good source of protein and minerals.
- Yogurt and fruit parfait. Preferably use low fat yogurt to limit
the amount of sugar. You may improve palatability by adding
spices such as cinnamon or a small amount of sweetener such
- Cottage cheese
- Nuts such as almonds, pistachio, macadamia nuts to mention
but a few. Nuts are calorie dense and only a handful should
- Hummus used as a dip for veggies can be filling and a healthy
- Cheese sticks. Low fat cheese sticks are a handy snack.
- Celery sticks and peanut butter
Dr. Ife Ojugbeli, MD, MBA