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What are some foods that are high in protein?

Rose Reisman
Nutrition & Dietetics
Protein is necessary for the proper growth and function of our bodies. There’s about 7 gm of protein in one ounce and women need around 7 -- 8 oz. and men 9 -- 10 oz. daily.
Some of the healthiest sources of protein are the following:
  • Lean meats -- white chicken, pork, turkey, flank or top sirloin steak
  • Parmesan cheese provides the most protein, but use in moderation due to the fat content
  • Roasted soy beans and roasted peanuts
  • Yellow fin tuna provides the most protein followed by anchovies, salmon, halibut, snapper tilapia, lobster and crab
  • Beans, nuts and legumes are great vegetarian sources of protein
  • Pure nut butters such as peanut and almond
  • Greek yogurt with no sugar or artificial sweeteners
Protein is important for your overall health. Some sources of protein -- fish, beans, soy, and nuts -- may even help protect your heart and blood vessels from damage over time. The trick is to get the protein your body needs without getting too much cholesterol and saturated fat and too many calories. This list of lean, high-protein foods should give you a few ideas about how to do this:
  • Beans -- including soy and soy products. Beans are a great source of protein and have the added benefit of being high in fiber and other nutrients. Examples include soybeans (edamame), black beans, pinto beans, navy beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, split peas, black-eyed peas, and lentils. Protein is also found in products like tofu, soymilk, and soy yogurt.
  • Nuts and seeds. These are an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and heart-healthy fats. Just watch your portion sizes, since nuts and seeds are high in calories. A small handful is usually a reasonable serving.
  • Poultry. Skinless, white-meat poultry (such as chicken and turkey) is a good source of low-fat protein.
  • Eggs. Eggs provide high-quality, low-fat protein and essential vitamins and minerals.
  • Lean beef and pork. There's no reason beef and pork can't be an occasional part of your regular diet. Just be sure to choose lean cuts, such as round and loin cuts. And stick to portions of 3 ounces or less (about the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand).

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.