When putting together a weight loss program for a client the first thing I figure out is how much protein they have to eat.
Out of all the macronutrients (protein, carbs, fat) in my opinion it is protein that plays the most important role in for weight loss.
These reasons are:
- It will preserve muscle mass. This is of course if you are working out with weights, which you should be. If you do not have protein available then you body will begin to break down it’s own muscle tissue for protein. This causes a bunch of problems like lowering metabolism, losing strength and muscle tone, etc.
- It keeps you the fullest the longest. Filling up on protein helps keep hunger at bay by keeping you full for long periods of time.
- It has a high thermic effect of food(TEF)- which means that a large number of calories are used to digest it. Around 20%. So if you eat 1000 calories from protein your body will use 200 calories just to digest it. Not a bad return for not doing anything.
Great sources of protein when trying to lose weight are: eggs, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, and any kind of lean meat.