FIll 'Er Up with Protein!

FIll 'Er Up with Protein!

One of the most frequently asked questions about NutriBlasting is, “Will I still be hungry afterward?” If our plates aren’t overloaded with food (most often a high-protein meat), we feel somewhat deprived and fear that we’ll leave the table unsatiated. My answer to this question is to step outside of your comfort zone, get out of your head, and take a test drive in the NutriBullet bandwagon! You will be surprised at how light, yet satisfied you feel. How is this possible, you ask? There are a few key factors that make it all possible, most notably the concepts of volumetrics, fiber, and protein!

Volumetrics is the theory that people tend to eat the same volume or amount of food each day, regardless of the caloric content or macronutrient make-up. Therefore, choosing high volume, nutrient-dense foods with fewer calories should help you feel full and satisfied and may even assist in dropping a few pounds. Fruits and veggies are ideal – they are low calorie, highly nutritious, and contain bulky fiber. In other words, you get more bang for your caloric buck!

Example: A pound of carrots contains as many calories as an ounce of peanuts.

Fiber is only found in plant-based foods, the types of ingredients you toss into your NutriBullet. Fiber is a miracle worker; it not only helps balance blood sugar levels by slowing absorption, but it also helps keep you regular and helps fill you up. Think about drinking one cup of apple juice versus eating one cup of apples. Which one would fill you up? When juicing produce, the fibrous pulp is removed and the satiety impact is lowered.

Protein is usually associated with a slab of meat or other animal-based food. However, did you know that per calorie, broccoli contains more protein than red meat? If you don’t believe me, check out the stats here. It is true that you’d need to eat a larger portion of broccoli to meet the protein equivalent, but think about how many more phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals, and living enzymes you’ll be gifting your body by choosing the leafy veggie over a hunk of meat.

While I am an advocate of getting nutrients from whole foods first, there is a time and a place when a little extra protein in the form of a supplement may be warranted.

  1. Meal Replacements – protein powders are a convenient way to increase the percentage of protein in your NutriBlast relative to carbs and fat in order to make it a well-rounded, balanced meal replacement.
  2. Post Workout – muscles need protein for recovery and growth; the ideal time to deliver amino acids has been shown to be shortly after exercise.
  3. Unintentional Weight Loss – consuming extra protein is a way to add extra calories and maintain lean body mass when it is in a catabolic (break-down) state.
  4. Wound Recovery – amino acids, the building blocks of protein help rebuild the body’s cells after physical stressors like severe burns, cuts, and bruises.
  5. Advanced Age - protein needs increase for the elderly to help minimize muscle wasting and cellular breakdown.

Now, you're probably wondering why I didn’t put weight loss on the list, so here are a few words of caution. While low-carb, high protein diets have been shown to help aid weight loss and may even produce faster initial results than other “diets”, in the long run, it has not been shown superior to a balanced food plan consisting of a large variety of plant-based meals. Protein is a macronutrient that is metabolized slower than carbohydrates. Barring the physiology of extreme carbohydrate restriction and fat and muscle burning, this might translate to mean those who consume higher protein vs. carb meals tend to fill up faster or stay full longer. However, any time extra calories are consumed beyond daily requirements, no matter the macronutrient source, weight gain will follow.

Protein Powders: Necessary to Add or Not?

Whether you choose protein in whole food form or supplement with a powder, here are some options suitable for the NutriBlast enthusiast.

Whole Food Protein Sources

  • Bean/legumes – garbanzo, cannellini, black, kidney, lentils, peas, peanuts (yes these are actually legumes, not nuts)
  • Nuts – walnuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, pistachios, cashews
  • Nut butter – almond, cashew, walnut, pecan, peanut
  • Organic soy – soymilk, tofu, edamame
  • Seeds – pumpkin, sesame, chia, flax, hemp, sunflower
  • Veggies!

Protein Powders

*Stay tuned for my next blog post for a breakdown on the differences between these along with some recommended brands.

  • Hemp
  • Pea
  • Brown rice
  • Soy
  • Whey
Registered Dietitian

Comment by debb52960
January 05, 2013
Oh and when i get done working out I make me a whey protein drink.
Comment by debb52960
January 05, 2013
Is there such a thing as having to much protein? I would like to put the hemp,goji,almonds cacao(the sweet nips,is that good?) pumpkin seeds all together (1 tbsp each) i make two nutri blast now a day. One in the morning and one before i work out at night but it makes me wonder if thats to much protein for the day. plus my meal chicken, broccoli, sweet potato, i eat something like that for lunch.
NutriLiving Krista Haynes on January 11, 2013
Debbie, the recommended amount of protein one should consume in a day is about 0.8-1g per kilogram of body weight. Sometimes more is recommended if doing high endurance or weight resistance activity, for the elderly, and/or if recovering from wounds/burns/or injuries. Another option is to calculate about 10-20% of your daily calories coming from protein. Again, individuals may vary...this is just a rough estimate. There is such a thing as too much protein and all protein isn't created equal - the body tends to have an easier time digesting plant-based proteins vs. animal-based. Too much can overtax your kidneys (hence why those with failing kidneys are asked to maintain a low protein diet) and excess also end up as fat if you are consuming too many calories (no matter the source - including protein). What isn't used is stored. Most Americans eat way to much protein. Use the general calculation above to get a good idea of where you might be. For weight loss - studies have shown that it is best not to fall under 72 grams a day in order to maintain lean body mass while losing fat mass.
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