Health fanatics have always had differing opinions of carbs and fats and some can differ quite drastically. Some think that a low carb diet is a way to go, while others think a high carb diet is best – the same can be said for fats. However, almost everyone can agree that protein is a very important aspect of any diet.
Getting enough protein in your diet has a plethora of health benefits. Keep reading for 7 incredible benefits and why you should increase your protein intake.
1. Increases Muscle
Proteins are the building blocks of your muscles. Eating sufficient amounts of protein helps keep you healthy by maintaining your muscle mass and also promotes muscle growth if you are someone who does strength training.
Whey protein is often suggested as the best type of protein powder. Its grams of protein to grams of powder are almost identical. Plant-based alternatives are becoming increasingly popular and according to this website, they are just as good for you, if not better, as they are easier for your body to absorb. It is also important that you consume protein when you are experiencing weight loss as it helps you retain the muscles you have.
2. Reduces Appetite
Studies show that of the three macronutrients, protein is the most filling and it does so with less food. This is made possible by the protein increasing your levels of PYY, a hormone that makes you feel full, and also reduces your level of ghrelin. A study on the effects of increasing protein intake in overweight women showed that an increase from 15% to 30% of calories made participants eat 441 fewer calories per day without intentionally restricting anything. If you want to lose weight, especially belly fat, you should replace some of your carbs and fats with proteins, balancing your appetite hormones.
3. Good for Your Bones
There is a myth doing the rounds that protein, especially animal protein, is bad for your bones. It comes from the idea that protein increases acidity causing calcium deficiency in order to neutralize the acid. If this is your fear, there are plenty of plant-based alternatives, but studies have shown that all proteins have benefits for bone health.
It found that people who eat more protein tend to better maintain their bone mass with age and therefore have a lower risk of osteoporosis and fractures. This is especially true and important for women after menopause.
4. Reduces Cravings
A craving is different from typical hunger. It isn’t about your body needing anything. Rather it is about your brain wanting something, even wanting a reward. Cravings are often incredibly hard to control as they come at random. One of the best ways to combat cravings is to stop them before they take place and protein just happens to be one of the best methods of prevention.
Increased protein intake to 25% of calories is able to reduce your cravings by around 60% and can eliminate the desire to snack at night altogether. This has been attributed to the improved functioning of dopamine, which is responsible for cravings.
5. Boosts Metabolism and Increases Fat Burning
A high protein diet has been shown to boost the metabolism and increase the number of calories you burn after a meal. It can lead to you burning an additional 80–100 more calories in a day, boosting your metabolism temporarily. Your body uses calories to digest your food, which is called the thermic effect. Of the macronutrients, protein has a higher thermic effect and can boost your metabolism by 20–35%.
6. Helps Maintain Weight Loss
Following on from the previous point, because a high-protein diet boosts your metabolism and leads to fewer cravings, many people who add more protein to their diet experience weight loss. This happens naturally and without intentional diet restriction, so you can imagine the benefits it has when three is intentional calorie restriction.
A year-long study found that a group who restricted their diet and had a high-protein diet lost about 53% more weight than another group who consumed the same amount of calories.
Losing weight is the beginning – it’s keeping weight constant that’s the hard part. A gradual increase in protein intake can help you maintain your weight.
7. Helps You Stay Fit as You Age
When you age, your muscles gradually get weaker. Eating more protein helps reduce many age-related muscle issues, such as loss and deterioration, and is a good way to prevent sarcopenia.
There you have it. 7 Incredible Benefits Of Having Enough Protein In Your Diet and why you should increase your intake today.