We have all heard about the adverse effects of consuming too many carbs and fats in our diet. On the other hand, protein is a macronutrient that will be your best friend if you want to lose weight or gain muscle and get fit.
Protein is the building block of our cells and an essential nutrient. But there is a slew of other health benefits that we will discuss in this article – and you will see why protein snacks are all you will need as you enter your fitness and health journey!
Protein Snacks Reduces Cravings
We all are familiar with cravings – it is our brain’s way of asking for a reward through food. This is different from hunger- the brain tells us that it needs fuel to energize bodily functions.
Cravings can lead to snacks in between meals. Now, don’t get me wrong, you may very well need snacks to energize your body – like a pre-workout or a post-workout snack, but
To clean up your diet, you must focus on how you snack. Snacking is usually when you are prone to making poor choices and go for high-sugar, high-fat snacks. These snacks will only increase your cravings.
Protein snacks are far more satiating and keep us fuller for longer. So, pick a healthy protein snack (such as jerky) over high-sugar and high-fat snacks (such as potato chips). Check out Jerky Brands for some delicious high-protein jerky snacks for some inspiration.
Protein Snacks Also Controls Appetite
Protein has a huge effect on our appetite and hunger work. Your appetite is controlled by a hormone called ghrelin. Consuming protein lowers ghrelin and lowers your hunger signals. Protein also increases the peptide YY, which gives you fullness.
This is why protein is a great way to control appetite. Ensure your meals have a higher proportion of protein and include protein snacks like a boiled egg.
Also, ensure you get plenty of dietary fiber to control your appetite.
Protein Snacks Help Build Muscles
Protein is essential for generating cells – particularly muscle cells. A protein-rich diet and strength training exercises will help you gain muscle mass.
Muscle mass is critical if you want to get fit and lose weight. Muscles inherently burn more calories and increase your metabolic rate. This helps maintain a calorie deficit needed to keep losing body fat.
So, if you want to lose weight consistently and for the long term, you need to work on building your muscle mass.
So, load up on the protein in all your meals and snacks. Be sure to pick healthy lean proteins that are minimally processed and as organic as possible.
Protein Snacks Can Help Boost Your Metabolism
Whenever we eat food, our metabolic rate goes up for a short period of time. The body burns calories to metabolize the food you eat. This phenomenon is called the thermic effect of food (TEF in short).
However, not all food will have the same thermic effect on our bodies. Protein is known to have a more significant thermic effect than fats or carbs – by as much as 30% higher.
So, a diet rich in proteins can help boost your metabolism, which will help you lose weight.
The boost in metabolism will also give you more energy throughout the day.
Protein Snacks Will Also Keep The Weight Off Once You Lose It
As you can see, once you reduce your food cravings, manage your appetite, and increase your metabolism, you will start to see the weight come off quickly.
Losing weight by increasing protein intake will also help you build a healthy relationship with food.
The good news is keeping the protein intake at higher levels will keep the weight off once you lose it and build a healthy relationship with food.
Ensure you consume enough dietary fiber like fruits and vegetables and lean proteins. There is also a need for healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil, nuts, and seeds. Finally, don’t forget to include some healthy whole-grain carbohydrates, too – like whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa, etc.
Protein Snacks Will Help You Age Healthily
One of the unfortunate parts of aging is the deterioration of muscular strength and reduction in muscle mass. This is tied to feeling weaker and having less strength and energy.
As much as this is a natural process of aging, there are ways you can reverse this and age healthily.
A protein-rich diet will help your body combat muscle loss as the body will have enough nutrients to keep building muscles. In addition, proteins help maintain bone health by keeping bones strong and combat osteoporosis and fractures.
Proteins also help heal the body faster from tears and injuries – which are more likely to happen as we age.
This is especially true if you also engage in strength training exercises and stay physically active. Not to mention exercising regularly will also boost your mood and mental health.
The events of the last few years have shown us why we need to continue to work towards achieving better health and avoiding underlying health conditions. Whether you carry a few extra pounds or need to lose a lot of weight, the journey to better health is possible for anyone at any age.
A journey to fitness and good health primarily includes a healthy diet plan. A diet rich in proteins, unrefined and minimally processed ingredients, healthy fats, and healthy complex carbohydrates will set you up for a successful weight loss and fitness.