Protein and your Metabolism
Are you getting enough protein throughout your day? Eating protein every 2-3 hours throughout the day can be beneficial in keeping our metabolism running, our energy up and our blood sugar levels stable. The daily amount of protein we eat will vary depending on our individual needs including our body weight, gender, age, and level of activity or exercise.
Your body burns about 10 percent of the calories you consume while breaking down the food into energy and nutrients it can use. This is known as the thermic effect of food. Protein in particular can stimulate the thermic effect of food, which means that the body burns up more energy processing dietary protein than it does carbohydrates or fats. Therefore, the act of digesting protein boosts your metabolism more than other nutrients. Diets high in protein may also make you feel full faster and longer, helping you eat less carbs and foods lacking in nutrients and containing unhealthy fats (ie. potato chips).
Not all protein is equal!
Now that we know that protein is essential in keeping our metabolism kicking, we can focus on eating the right kind of protein. Healthful protein includes: wild fish, lean meats such as organic chicken and turkey, grass-fed beef, organic eggs, cottage cheese, and ricotta.
Try this the next time you reach for a snack: ½ cup of low fat cottage cheese with sliced cucumber, squeeze of lemon, sea salt and paprika or ½ cup of cottage cheese, or ½ cup of ricotta cheese sprinkled with cinnamon and ½ sliced apple. Both are a delicious and high in protein option.