Do you feel like you get enough protein in your diet? As a general rule, women should consume at least 49g a day and men should have at least 63g of protein, but there are circumstances where you might want more to help you achieve your fitness goals. For example, if you’re pregnant, on a low-carb diet like keto, or you’re trying to build muscle, then the standard amount of protein simply won’t be enough. Discover creative ways to add more protein to your daily diet.
Why Might You Need More Protein?
Whether you’re trying to build muscle or make up for the carbs you aren’t eating on keto or the Atkins diet, there are a lot of reasons why you might want to increase the amount of protein you’re taking in. While the average recommended amount is great for average people, it won’t help you achieve your fitness goals. Here are some reasons you may need to up your intake:
Pregnant Women Need More Protein
For pregnant women, protein serves additional purposes. For example, it helps provide the fetal tissue with the nutrients it needs to grow. The extra protein also benefits your child’s brain and helps your breasts grow, in addition to producing more blood to support your pregnancy.
Growing Muscle Requires More Protein
If you workout and follow an average diet, odds are, you’ll get average results. For example, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson consumes 5,000 calories each day, including more than two pounds of fish, and that’s the kind of protein consumption it takes to build serious muscle.
Protein is Excellent for Weight Loss
While losing weight may seem like a matter of eating as little as possible, that’s actually far from the truth. Protein is phenomenal for weight loss— it boosts your metabolism, reduces appetite, and stimulates hormones that contribute to burning fat.
Smart Ways to Upgrade Your Daily Protein Intake
The typical Western diet is already known to be high in protein. However, there are easy ways to incorporate more protein into your meals while also getting enough protein via supplements. If you’re ready to increase the consumption of your body’s crucial building block, consider these tips for easily adding it to your diet.
Protein Shakes – An Easy and Delicious Way to Get the Protein You Need
If it’s been years since you’ve tried a protein shake, you’ll be surprised at how many options and creative flavors are available. Whichever kind you choose, making a protein shake is just a matter of adding a scoop into your favorite protein shaker bottle, adding water, and shaking until it’s smooth and ready to drink. These tips will help you incorporate protein shakes into your routine.
Find the Flavor You Love Most
Face it– if it’s a chore to choke down your protein shake each day, you’re going to hate it, and probably won’t keep up the habit for very long. Luckily, there are a massive variety of awesome protein flavors to explore. Here are some notable highlights:
- Cereal Inspired Flavors by Spartan Nutrition
- Cinna Crunch
- Marshmallow Cereal
- Fruity Cereal
- Apple Cinnamon Cereal
- The Cold Stone Ice Cream Series by Syntha-6
- Birthday Cake Remix
- Mint Chocolate Chip
- Berry Berry Berry Good
Keep a Shaker Bottle Available
Whether you’re at home, work, or driving for most of the day, having your shaker bottle available will make it easy to get the extra protein you need. Sometimes you can find quality protein shakers at affordable prices in unexpected stores, such as Ross.
Another useful way to get them is through Bodybuilding.com– by simply spending over $75, you’ll get a free gift, which includes a smart shaker bottle. Consider keeping protein shakers on hand at work and wherever else you hang out so you can get an adequate amount of protein throughout the day.
Mix Protein With Aminos, Fresh Fruit, or Nootropics for a Power Smoothie
Protein is vital for our daily lives, but there are ways to make your shake a lot more beneficial for your health. Consider adding something to your shake to make it truly tempting and potent:
- Add a nootropic like piracetam for some bitterness and a cognitive boost.
- Include fresh fruit or veggies for extra vitamins and minerals.
- BCAAs can alter the taste and provide extra amino acids for caffeine and muscle support.
- Throw in a scoop of collagen for its anti-aging benefits and additional protein.
Losing Weight? Try to Substitute Meals with an Epic Protein Shake
A standard protein shake will provide around 20-30g of protein for 200 calories. That protein will not only stimulate your metabolism but will fill you up, helping you forget about food for a while. Before you know it, it’ll be lunch time and you won’t even realize you haven’t eaten. Protein shakes can be an excellent tool for those who are shedding pounds for the summer.
Consuming More Protein When Cooking and Snacking
Some bodybuilders resort to eating nothing but chicken breast and lettuce during their training periods, but there are far more interesting ways than that to add protein to your diet. Try some of these ideas to enhance the amount of protein you get in each meal:
Consider Creative Power Bowls
Ideal for packing into a Tupperware container to take to work or school, power bowls are as efficient as they are convenient. By simply choosing a combination of ingredients that are compatible with your diet and high in protein, you can create an awesome lunch that provides all of your nutrients in a single sitting. Here are some ideas for excellent power bowls you can make for optimal protein consumption:
- Epic Protein Salad – In addition to all the veggies you want, boost the protein content with avocado, egg, bacon, tuna, chicken, fish, lunch meat, shrimp, cheese, and other high-quality proteins. Top it off with a dressing that fits your diet plan.
- Taco Bowl – If your diet allows rice and beans, those are excellent to include. Add some pollo asado, ground beef or turkey, queso, and carne asada to take the protein to the next level. Top with salsa for a low-calorie choice, or guacamole and sour cream for flavor.
- Breakfast Power Bowl – Many breakfast foods are rich in protein and you can combine all of them into a convenient power bowl. Add egg, bacon, ham, sausage, peppers, your choice of cheeses, and consider potatoes and salsa to enhance the texture and taste. Cheese offers many health benefits and can vastly improve the flavor of your power bowl.
Add Protein-Rich Toppings to Your Meals
From soup and sandwiches to salads and oatmeal, some foods are begging to be topped off with something extra. That something extra can be rich in protein. Consider adding almonds, cashews, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, beans, and other protein-rich toppings to enhance the protein content of anything you’re eating.
Have Your Own Creative High-Protein Recipes? Let Us Know!
Protein is a vital micronutrient, and adding more into your daily diet is simply a matter of planning and creativity. From delicious power bowls that combine high-quality ingredients to making protein shakes a normal part of your life, there are plenty of fun and enjoyable ways to increase your protein intake.
Have any of your own unique protein recipes or tips? Let us know! Feel free to leave a comment about how you implement more of this crucial micronutrient into your diet.