If you're working to crush your fitness and weight loss goals, you need more protein in your life. Research shows that eating larger portions of protein while dieting does more than bolster lean body mass; it also leads to better food choices over the long haul. Beyond what protein can do for your weight, it also helps fuel your day and keeps you satiated for longer to keep afternoon crashes at bay.
The problem is that not all healthy snacks are beneficial or have that much protein. Not sure where to start? Here's a round-up of what to choose to get more protein in your day.
1) Low Fat Yogurt and Veggies
Veggie and yogurt sound like the ideal protein-packed snack, but it's easy to reach for the wrong thing. Low-fat, sugary yogurt and carrots or celery may give your body some fuel, but you're not going to get the protein you're looking for.
Instead, reach for whole milk, Greek-style yogurt that's higher in yogurt than its low-fat counterpart. Add protein-rich fruit, like raspberries and blackberries, that are higher in the nutrients you need to stay full and energetic.
Want even more protein? Add one of our protein on the Go packs to enhance your yogurt snack and crush your day.
Jerky is often celebrated as the perfect on-the-go snack with up to 10 grams of protein. Jerky is usually processed by packing it with salt, making it sky-high in sodium. A one-ounce serving of jerky could account for over 500 milligrams of sodium. Jerky is also highly processed and could lead to elevated blood pressure.
Higher-end, healthy jerky, like salmon or lean meat jerky with low salt and fillers, could be a great fit for your day. Coconut jerky is also an alternative to traditional meat options. Dried green peas are easy to take with you and contain protein, fiber, manganese, potassium, and magnesium for a healthy snack.
3) Charcuterie Boards
Digging into charcuterie boards and reaching for the cold cuts, salamis, and cheeses is a tasty snack, but eating high amounts of processed meats increases your risk for everything from diabetes to heart disease and some cancers. Instead, you can enjoy some canned tuna for a boost of protein, B-complex vitamins, iron, selenium, Vitamins A, D, and phosphorous.
If you're not feeling the fish, try hard-boiled eggs that travel easily. Avocado also contains protein and beneficial mono-saturated and polyunsaturated fats, fiber, and fiber.
4) Protein Bars
Are you reaching for an afternoon candy bar masquerading as a protein bar? Sure, some protein bars out there are healthier than others, but most are high in sugar, salt, and other highly processed ingredients. They also tend to be high in calories, which can quickly derail your weight loss goals.
Instead of sugary protein bars, reach for raw nuts and seeds or a to-go container of cottage cheese. Roasted chickpeas are also a filling source of plant-based protein with great flavor. Just make sure they're not doused in salt and seasoning that could skyrocket your sodium.
5) Kale Smoothies
Green smoothies are popular as a healthy snack or meal replacement. Kale alone does have some protein, but not much without more dark greens. It's to end up overdoing it on protein and only ending up with a few grams to help fuel your day.
Kale smoothies aren't bad for you; they just don't provide a powerful source of protein. Instead of trying to drink more and packing in the calories, reach for some whey protein instead. We offer whey protein in a variety of flavors, including strawberry shortcake, to add a punch to your next smoothie.
Ready to get more protein in your diet and supercharge your health and energy? Start shopping our supplements or comprehensive health programs to pick up organic greens, multivitamins, probiotics, and more.