What is a high-protein diet?Our bodies need protein to help our cells grow and repair themselves. Protein also helps us fight infection and keeps our hair and nails strong. Protein is found naturally in all animal products like meat, fish, dairy products and eggs.
In general, high protein diets are similar to low-carb diets. You reduce the amounts of carbohydrates like bread and pasta you're eating and increase how much meat, fish, eggs and dairy products you eat instead. Protein makes up 10-15 per cent of most people's diets. A high protein diet is on where you get about 30 to 40 per cent of your daily calories from protein.
How does the high-protein it work?
Protein is very filling so you're likely to feel full quickly, and hopefully consume fewer calories in the long run. Protein takes a lot of energy to digest so a high-protein diet supposedly boosts metabolism. Protein provides long-lasting energy without making your blood sugar surge or slump.
Who is a high-protein diet good for?
People who like meat. Meat is a very good source of protein so this diet
will suit anyone who loves chicken and steak. Because protein is so
filling, this diet will also suit people with big appetites.
What are the drawbacks?Too much protein can put strain on your kidneys. Cutting out too many
carbohydrates can mean you don't get enough fibre and/ or vitamins and
High protein foods can be high in fat so some doctors argue a
high-protein diet could be bad for your heart and cholesterol levels.
It might be hard for vegetarians to find enough different foods to eat.
What do you do?
Reduce the amount of carbohydrates like bread, pasta and rice you're
eating and boost your protein intake instead. Think about each meal
before you prepare it - protein like meat, chicken, fish or eggs should
be the focus, not bread or pasta. Fill up with fruit, veg and salad on
the side. Swap sugary snacks for protein-rich ones, for example, nuts,
low-fat cheese or even pieces of chicken or ham.
What can I eat on a high-protein diet?
Lean red meat, skinless chicken, fish, dairy products (preferably
low-fat ones) are all high in protein and perfect for this diet.
What's a typical day's diet?
Breakfast: Boiled eggs on brown toast.
Lunch: Chicken and boiled egg salad, pot of yogurt
Dinner: Grilled or baked fish, green veg or leafy green salad.
Snacks: Nuts, mini Babybel
If you're bored with cheese and ham sandwiches, try peanut butter instead - it's a great source of protein.
Here are some recipes and ingredients ideas to get you going on the High Protein Diet:
- Mushroom soup
- Spelt flour pancakes
- Creamy spinach & haddock fillets
- Chicken satay lettuce wraps
- Tuna steak with green veg
- Griddled asparagus & steak salad
Where to next?
Buy the New High Protein Diet by Charles Clark, £5.99 from Amazon