High-Protein Foods – Delicious Protein Rich Foods for a Healthy Lifestyle

High-Protein Foods: A healthy diet consists of protein as an important micronutrient. Proteins are different chains of amino acids which help in repairing body cells and making new ones. They also play several important functions in our body such as an antibody, an enzyme, a messenger, and structural components. Also, there are many reasons why Protein should be present in everyday diet. Some of them are:

  • Our bones, muscles, skin, and cartilage are all built up by protein. Our hair and nails are mostly made up of protein.
  • Our body uses protein as a mechanism to repair and generate tissues.
  • The red blood cells that supply oxygen throughout the body contain protein compounds.
  • During puberty, hormone regulation is also balanced by proteins.

High-Protein Foods

Protein being an essential nutrient for body growth and cell repair is found in an extensive variety of food. Depending on individuals’ weight, gender, age, and health protein needs can be achieved by eating a different kinds of foods. Plants and animals are the food sources for protein such as meat, fish, dairy products, eggs, legumes (beans and lentils), seeds, and nuts.

Proteins are made up of amino acids and the quantity of these acids contain different amount of nutritional value. For example, animal products (meat, fish, dairy products, and eggs) are known as ‘complete’ proteins whereas, the plant proteins (beans, nuts, and whole grains) are considered ‘incomplete’ proteins. Also, Soy products and leafy green seeds are known as amaranth consisting of essential amino acids.

Lean meats such as lamb, beef, pork, veal, and kangaroo are rich in proteins. White-fleshed fish are also great sources of protein with a little amount of fat and few calories. The poultry sources include chicken, duck, turkey, goose, and emu. However, eating white meat chicken and turkey have its own benefits with low fat and are also rich in protein. 

High-Protein Foods - Delicious Protein Rich Foods for a Healthy Lifestyle

High Protein Seafoods

Fish, lobsters, oysters, clams, prawns, and crabs are high-protein plates of seafood. The seafood contains various amino acids and is digestible for people of all ages. It also includes several minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, iodine, and iron in marine fishes. Many shellfish and fish have about one-third of the total amount of protein required in a day.

High Protein Seafoods

High Protein Dairy Products

There are also many dairy products like milk, cheese (cottage cheese), and yogurt (Greek yogurt). Dairy products control blood sugar levels, bone health, and muscle strength. These foods also contain minerals like potassium and vitamins such as calcium, phosphorous, and vitamin D which are essential for an individual’s health and growth. Nowadays, low-fat cottage cheese is a common choice for high protein and calcium.

High Protein Dairy Products

Nuts and Seeds Based Protein Foods

Different nuts and seeds are also considered rich protein food sources such as walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, almonds, pumpkin, and sunflower seeds. Nuts and seeds are not only protein-rich but also a good source of fiber, vitamins, and healthy fats. The fats from nuts are not fully absorbed which helps in regulating the body weight and also helps in burning energy.

Nuts also act as a natural energy booster and prevent individuals from binge eating unhealthy food. The right proportion of a high-protein diet of nuts and seeds can expedite weight loss.

Nuts and Seeds Based Protein Foods

Plants Based High Protein Foods

Protein from plants can be consumed from legumes and beans which have other essential nutrients. These plant-based protein food sources are beneficial for vegans and vegetarians. Beans and legumes are antioxidants preventing cell damage and fighting aging and diseases. Moreover, Tofu is also considered a major plant protein that provides all essential amino acids and low calories and fat.

Plants Based High Protein Foods

What Happens When a Person Suffers Lack of Protein

The various food sources provide an adequate amount of protein which helps in maintaining and repairing cells in the body. The lack of protein as an essential nutrient can lead to protein deficiency called Kwashiorkor. It is a severe protein deficiency causing distended, fluid retention, and swollen abdomen. It is caused when the body is unable to take the required amount of protein. 

If a person is undergoing this deficiency he/she will be showing some symptoms like loss of muscle mass, problems related to skin, hair, and nails, there will be a high risk of bone fractures. An adequate amount of protein intake keeps the person satiated for a longer duration and reduces the cravings and urge to binge eat. Hence, the lack of protein in the system will increase hunger resulting in an increased intake of calories.

Amino acids keep the immune system intact, however, their deficiency takes a toll on the immunity system and makes the body prone to various infections. The diagnosis of fatty liver is also a common symptom of protein deficiency.

Not only the body mass and cell growth based on protein intake but also the overall body growth requires protein as an essential micronutrient. Hence, the deficiency of protein can be avoided by a daily dose of protein in the diet from various food sources.

Harmful Effects of Too Much Protein

“Too much of anything is good for nothing”, this line is very suitable for everything. Thus, too much protein intake is also harmful to the body. A high-protein diet can strain the liver and kidneys. It can lead to excessive loss of calcium from the body resulting in an increased risk of Osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is often known as a ‘silent disease because most people don’t realize it and shows no signs of discomfort. The bones in the body lose calcium and become less dense, weak, have no strength, and are prone to breakage or fractures. Hence, this can be treated by limiting the intake of protein and increasing the intake of calcium. 

In nutshell, high-protein food from different sources should be included in a healthy diet to fulfill the necessity of micronutrients and amino acids in the body. It helps in the growth of the body and cell repair. Food from plants such as nuts and seeds is rich in protein for vegan individuals. Moreover, chicken, turkey, and prawns serve as rich protein food for people who prefer non-veg over the veg. An adequate amount of protein is necessary to keep away from deficiencies and diseases. 

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