When we think about protein rich diets, we may conjure up an image of an oiled up bulky body builder with a plate loaded full of steak and eggs, which I imagine probably isn’t that inspiring for most women! But have you ever considered why body builders eat protein rich diets, and more so, why you should possibly be taking a leaf out of their book?
Ok, maybe not so much with the overload of red meat, as I believe there are much healthier ways of topping up your protein intake, but certainly why we should be including more protein in our diets and how?
Generally speaking, as women we don’t eat enough protein. We tend to crave more sugary snacks, pasta and other refined carbs. Men, on the other hand, tend to want to sink their jaws into a big juicy burger! We may also be prone to believing the myth that eating too much protein will make you ‘bulky’ just like those body builders! But in fact, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
A body builder’s physique is built with a strict diet and hours in the gym working to a bespoke fitness plan that aims to create muscle and lots of it. Adding a little more protein to your diet will not give you a shortcut to the same look! If it did, there would be far more Arnold Schwarzenegger types wandering around. So if you’re not putting hours and hours a week into a weightlifting gym routine, you’re probably not going to gain bulk from extra protein.
Did you know that protein is the most important nutrient to include in your diet if you want to lose weight and build lean muscle mass?
- Protein helps satiate hunger, filling you up for longer you up so that you don’t feel the need to snack so much
- It boosts your metabolism so that you burn more calories
- It helps reduce cravings
- It prevents muscle loss which in turn keeps your metabolic rate higher and keeps you burning more calories
- It helps muscle repair, so every time you do your workout, protein will actually help your body create that lean muscle you crave!
Several very good reasons why you should be trying to cram more of it into your diet! So how do you make sure you’re getting enough? Protein should be included at every meal and this is where a lot of women (vegans especially) can go wrong.
Here’s some quick tips to ensure you’re adding a little extra protein to your daily diet:
Porridge with honey – add some nuts and seeds or a scoop of protein powder.
Brown rice salad – add some cottage cheese and hemp seed sprinkle
Fruit Smoothie – add a scoop of vanilla protein or a spoonful of your favourite nut butter
Tuna Steak with Chinese green veg – top with a boiled egg
These meals are quick, easy and can be easily thrown together even if you get home from work late. If you’re a vegan and think you’re not getting enough protein in your meals, think about a protein supplement that’s high in Lysine as this is the essential amino acid you may not be getting in enough quantities.
This blog was written by Neat Ambassador, Korin Nolan. Korin is the founder of Power Pilates UK (Dynamic Reformer Pilates Studio based in South East London) and started her Pilates training at The London a college of Dance, before qualifying with Body Control Pilates over twelve years ago. Korin has had a varied career also working in TV as a presenter on Five’s The Wright Stuff for four years. She went on to co write her cookery book 'How to Cook in High Heels' (released in 2010 with Absolute Press) which demonstrated her love for healthy food, as well as a few naughty treats! Following the birth of her second baby Olivia Grace earlier this year, Korin developed her unique online fitness plan The Baby Body Bootcamp, for busy mums on the go and is suitable for postpartum mums.