Protein and Weight Loss
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Protein and Weight Loss
High-protein diets are not about excluding all other food groups, but eating more protein has shown positive results when it comes to weight loss and diet maintenance.
Here's why: fish, chicken, beef, beans and other protein-rich foods don't travel as quickly from the stomach to the intestine. This basically means your stomach empties at a much slower rate - so you feel fuller longer, and as a result, eat less. Proteins don't cause a spike in blood sugar levels - and the subsequent crash. The body also has to use more energy to digest protein - you actually burn more calories in the process.
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Protein, found in lean meats, turkey, chicken, low fat dairy products and soy and quinoa, can help you lose weight by increasing your feeling of fullness, therefore, helping you stop eating sooner.
Protein is important for weight loss, but keep in mind that portions are important. No more than 5-6 ounces of lean protein per day for women, and 6-8 ounces per day for men.
Small amounts of protein are a great snack as protein does not raise blood sugar quickly. Therefore it is a satisfying food that gives you a feeling of being full. You don't feel the need to eat more as you do with foods that are high in sugar and starch. Remember though that overeating any food contributes to weight gain.
Protein in your diet does not help you lose weight. Overall appropriate calorie controlled diet with an adequate balance of carbohydrates, protein and fat for your age, gender and health conditions will help you lose weight. To understand your daily needs for these nutrients you need to contact a registered dietitian in your area.
Protein can help people to lose weight because it takes more time for the body to breakdown and process. It also can help to balance blood sugar for the same reason. The best choices for protein are those that are lower in fat, or "lean" such as:
Protein is important in your diet to maintain your muscles and essential body functions. Muscle tissue actively burns calories to help you lose weight. Choose high quality protein occurring in foods naturally from lean meats, eggs, and dairy or from vegan sources such as legumes, beans, nuts, or hearty whole grains such as quinoa.
Assimilating Proteins Burns Up a Lot of Calories - to understand this you need to familiarize yourself with the idea of the specific dynamic action (SDA) of foods. The SDA of a food represents the effort or energy that the body has to use to break down the food until it is reduced to its basic unit, which is the only form in which it can enter the bloodstream. To assimilate 100 calories of pure protein— egg whites, lean fish, or fat-free cottage cheese— the task is enormous. This is because protein is composed of an aggregate of very long chains of molecules whose basic links, amino acids, are connected to each other by a strong bond that requires a lot more work to be broken down. It takes 30 calories just to assimilate the proteins, leaving only 70 usable calories. Thus the SDA of proteins is 30 percent. Assimilating proteins makes the body work hard and is responsible for producing heat and raising our body temperature. At the end of the day, after eating 1,500 calories worth of proteins, a substantial intake, only 1,050 calories remain after digestion.
Proteins Reduce Your Appetite - snacking on proteins does delay your urge for your next meal and does reduce the amount that you then eat. What is more, eating only protein foods produces ketones, powerful natural appetite suppressants that are responsible for a lasting feeling of satiety.
Proteins Fight Edema and Water Retention - Certain diets or foods are known as being “hydrophilic”—that is, they encourage water retention and the bloating this causes. This is the case for mostly vegetable diets, rich in fruits, vegetables, and mineral salts. Protein- rich diets are the exact opposite. They are known to promote elimination through urine and, as such, provide a welcome purge or “drying out” for tissues gorged with water, which is a particular problem during the premenstrual cycle or during perimenopause.
Proteins Enable You to Lose Weight Without Losing Muscle or Skin Tone - A diet lacking in proteins forces the body to use its own muscles and the skin’s proteins, so the skin loses its elasticity. Combined, these effects cause aging of the skin, the hair, and even one’s general appearance. A diet high in protein has no reason to attack the body’s reserves because the body is being given massive protein supplies.
Increasing the amount of protein in your diet can help you to lose weight by increasing both satiation and satiety. Satiation is the feeling of fullness during a meal that will cause you to stop eating. Satiety is the feeling of fullness that continues from the end of that meal until the next time you eat (in between meals, or in between a meal and a snack). This is important because an increase in both of these factors can lead to a natural decrease in the amount of calories you consume in a day. Weight loss is basically a result of expending more calories than you consume. So, the process of eating more protein, feeling more full, and eating less calories would help you lose weight.
Protein will keep you satisfied longer (than carbs), and thus helps control your appetite. This is simply because it takes longer to digest. Furthermore, your body works harder to digest proteins and there is more energy burned in the process. But it is important to remember that carbs (including: fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes) are your body's preferred source of energy and your body needs adequate energy, as well as, phytonutrients to function well. So adding in protein to your meals and snacks will help you get the benefit of both.
Dietary protein assists weight loss by burning additional energy (kcalories) as it is changed into amino acids; by remaining in the stomach longer (causing a feeling of satiety or fullness); by maintaing muscle mass and health; and by releasing the hormone leptin, that regulates / inhibits appetite.
It takes more energy to burn protein than carbohydate. Therefore , you're burning kcalories (making a caloric deficit).
Amino Acids are not as easily absorbed by the body as glucose (the end product of carbohydrate). Therefore, it stays in the stomach longer, providing a feeling of "fullness" longer.
Protein helps maintain muscle mass and helps prevent muscle loss during weight loss. Muscle is the determinant of your metabolic rate (the rate at which your body burns kcalories). The more muscle tissue you have, the more kcalories you'll burn to maintain it.
The amino acid (end product of protein), leucine, lowers your triglyceride level in the blood. This action triggers the release of leptin, which tells the brain "You're full".
A higher amount of protein in a diet has been said to satisfy hunger more than carbohydrates. In a study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition they reported that people experienced greater weight loss and less hunger when fat was reduced to 20% of the total calories in their diet, protein was increased to 30% and carbs were 50% of their diet. Participants consumed on average 441 fewer calories a day, using the high-protein diet.
Protein also helps in weight loss because it helps your body gain muscle, which in turn helps burn more calories by increasing your metabolism.
Adding protein in a diet helps to lose weight in different ways.
Thus by eating protein in your diet you increase metabolism as well as satiety which in turn helps you to lose weight.
A meal or snack that contains a protein rich food provides more satiety - a comfortable sense of fullness. For example: When snacking on crackers you might find you can quickly eat several handfuls and still feel hungry. Try eating just a few crackers with an ounce of flavorful cheese and a bit of fresh fruit. Most individuals will feel more satisfied and more in control. The same goes for a bowl of pasta. Add a lean protein source as well as plenty of vegetables. The overall effect is fewer calories and that is what leads to ultimate weight loss.