High-protein foods have always been the target of many health observers. This food is not only the best bodybuilding food, but also as the best foods for overall health, protein sources are important in our life.
In fact, it is undeniable that our bodies cannot function normally without protein. Even the plan to lose weight also requires a lot of protein.
We do not have instant pills to lose weight, there are no instant pills to cure, so protein-rich foods are an important food source to keep the body strong, energetic and always functioning normally. So says Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, head of nutrition and wellness at WW.
The protein rich-foods also keep you feeling full longer, preventing you from snacking all the time. Of course in this way, we can cut a lot of food that enters the body and can reduce the risk of being overweight.
Well, why high protein foods are very important for us. Here we quote many explanations from nutrition experts. What is the relationship between protein foods and weight loss, and what are the lists of high protein foods.
Here, we have compiled at least 15 high-protein foods that are important to make a healthy food list in your daily diet.
How Important is High Protein Food
Foods high in protein are quite important for our body. Almost all body functions involve this nutrient. Even protein is one of the macro nutrients that everyone needs to eat. Protein helps build muscle tissue, strengthens bones, and even plays a role in cartilage.
Our body is made up of muscles, bones and various body tissues and it is formed by the proteins we eat. So, it is very clear that protein sources are important for health.
High-protein foods are also a source of essential amino acids. This is because protein itself is made up of 20 essential amino acids for the body. The body can not produce all of these amino acids, the body can only produce 11 essential amino acids and the rest is from protein-rich foods that we consume daily.
In fact, protein-rich foods also contain nutrients such as vitamins. Included in the B vitamins are niacin, b12, b6, and riboflavin. Also, protein-rich foods contain selenium, phosphorus, choline, copper, zinc, vitamins A, D, and vitamin E. So, a lot of other nutrients are present in protein-rich foods. So it is mentioned that protein is one of the macro nutrients, in addition to two other nutrients such as fat and carbohydrates.
Protein is a major need of the body, while micro-nutrients are something that is only needed in small amounts such as vitamins and minerals. Well, that’s the reason why there is no specific amount of protein for the daily diet.
Therefore the RDA recommended dietary protein is 0.8 grams per kg of body weight. For 20 pounds of body weight means need more than 7 grams of protein. Well, if you weigh 150 pounds, then the daily protein you need is 55 grams. So, if you eat food, it is better to multiply foods rich in protein than foods high in carbohydrates or fat.
List of High-Protein Foods
When people ask “what foods are high in protein?” Maybe we immediately imagine beef, chicken breast, poultry, eggs.
This is true and they are among the best sources of protein because they contain all the essential amino acids (9 amino acids) that are produced by food. But not only that, there are many other foods that are rich in protein.
In addition to protein from animals, there are other healthy foods that are a source of protein called vegetable protein. It is good for your diet, whether you are a vegetarian or vegan.
This vegetable protein is perfect for meeting your body’s protein needs. Even science says that replacing some vegetable protein for animal protein will provide a positive value for health.
If you choose plant-based protein sources, then you have to vary your diet because most plant-based proteins don’t contain the 9 amino acids found in eggs or poultry.
If you want to know what protein sources are, then we say that this is a lot, below we list some high-protein foods sources that are important for you, even in weight loss. So we can say that this is high-protein foods list for weight loss.
Listed below is the amount of protein for each serving or 100 grams of each food.
|Chicken breast||31 g|
|Ground beef||20 g|
|Canned tuna||19 g|
|Whole milk||3 g|
|Part-skim mozzarella||24 g|
|Low-sodium cottage cheese||12 g|
|Greek yogurt||10 g|
|Pumpkin seeds||19 g|
|Hemp seeds||32 g|
The table above is from https://www.weightwatchers.com/
Now see one by one the reviews for these protein-rich foods.
1. Chicken breast
As we mentioned above, chicken breast is one of the protein-rich foods and is one of the best foods for bodybuilding. But for the overall well-being of the body, protein is key.
Chicken breast in a good source of protein for the body. Saturated fat is only slightly lower than what you get from red meat. Chicken breast is nutrient dense because in addition to protein it also contains vitamins, unsaturated fats, and minerals.
How to choose the highest protein chicken breast is to choose skinless chicken breast or skinless rotisserie chicken breast. One 3 oz serving contains 26 grams of protein with very little saturated fat.
By eating the chicken breast, you also get nutrients such as selenium, choline. Selenium is important for immunity and choline plays an important role in improving mood, controlling muscles, memory and is important for heart health.
How to eat this chicken? You can grill it or fry it using Air fryer, look our Frozen Chicken Patties in the Air Fryer.
Salmon is famous for its omega 3 fats, and salmon is a high-protein food which in 5 oz contains 27 grams of protein. The plus value not only in protein, but the content of omega 3 is a very important nutrient from salmon, the benefits of omega 3 is to protect the heart, and good for children’s brain development.
Salmon is a fish rich in potassium, vitamins B12, B6, and contains vitamins D and A. According to information from the USDA, Americans do not get enough nutrients from marine fish, they also add fresh water foods such as salmon.
The USDA recommends eating at least 8 ounces of seafood each week. When this is not sufficient, then the alternative is to consume salmon.
In addition to protein from salmon, fish such as cod, arctic char, snapper, trout also contain protein.
How to eat salmon is easy, just by grilling it or you can use the Air fryer for frying salmon using Air and not use the oil. See our Frozen Salmon In Air Fryer Recipe.
3. Ground beef
Ground beef is also a protein-rich food and even beef is an important ingredient in some recipes such as BBQ and burgers. For 4 ounces of lean beef is said to contain about 23 grams of protein.
But be careful with ground beef because the fat content is higher than other protein sources.
If you are a beef connoisseur, then add other foods to your diet, you can add beans or vegetables for additional fiber, and other nutrients.
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Shrimp is a food that is famous for its deliciousness and nutritional content. Among the nutrients in shrimp are omega 3, and protein. 3 ounces of shrimp served as a side dish provides 20 grams of protein.
However, you have to be careful with shrimp because besides being high in protein, it is also rich in cholesterol. Even the cholesterol in shrimp is more than other seafood.
One serving of shrimp (3 ounces) contains 189 cholesterol. Indeed, there are studies that say that shrimp is not the cause of heart disease.
However, we do not see it that way, precisely with the high cholesterol content in shrimp, we must be careful in consuming this delicious food. The safe way is to consume in limited or medium quantities.
Tuna is often a mainstay when we don’t have fresh fish. But make no mistake, because tuna also has many vitamins, including vitamin D and omega 3 and is rich in protein.
One serving of tuna (3 ounces) provides about 16 grams of protein. So, it’s popular as one of the high-protein foods. In addition, there are also other important nutrients such as potassium, selenium, and calcium.
There are things to watch out for in tuna, where there are concerns some people have about the high content of mercury that can increase the risk of cancer. But this is only found in white tuna (albacore).
As a result of this, the FDA has limited the amount of tuna consumption. The FDA recommends consuming only 6 ounces of tuna per week. This does not apply to all types of tuna as there are light tuna and other canned fish, either frozen or unfrozen which they can eat up to 8 ounces of each week.
Other foods that are high in protein are milk, besides being high in calcium, milk is also the best source of protein. The USDA itself has classified milk and its derivatives as high-protein foods.
If you drink whole milk, just one cup provides about 8 grams of protein. In addition, cow’s milk is often fortified with vitamins A and D.
For those of you who are allergic to animal products, there is soy milk which is also high in protein content, where one serving provides at least 7 to grams of protein.
Another protein-rich food is eggs, so it is not wrong if bodybuilders always increase the consumption of white eggs as a source of protein.
Even eggs are categorized as the high protein foods for muscle building. But you are only advised to consume egg whites only.
One egg only contains 6 grams of protein, besides that it is also rich in choline, vitamin A, and vitamin B12. In addition, eggs are also one of the sources of vitamin D that many dieters seek.
8. Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is one of the best high protein foods that you should add to your diet. This is a dairy product that is quite important in nourishing your body.
How much protein is in Greek Yogurt? If you eat Greek yogurt without fat, then the protein content is 20 grams for every 7 ounces.
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Cheese is also a product of milk and it is also rich in protein. Beside protein, cheese is also very rich in nutrients such as calcium, potassium and magnesium which are important for bone health.
What is the value of protein in cheese? One cup of low-sodium cottage cheese contains 20 grams of protein. While hard cheese like Parmesan in one ounce contains about 10 grams of protein.
But you should limit the consumption of cheese because of its saturated fat content. This makes you have to limit it in your daily diet.
It is an excellent source of protein and also as vegetable high fiber for health. Chickpeas is one of the high protein foods for vegetarians. One cup of dry canned chickpeas provides 15 grams of protein and 13 grams of fiber. There are also indigestible carbohydrates that are useful in slowing down the digestive process so that it supports the health of diabetics.
If you don’t find chickpeas, there are other beans called lupines or lupini, they are plant foods that are rich in protein too. 1 cup of lupini provides about 26 grams of protein.
Lentils are a group in pulses, which includes several types of pulses such as beans, lentils, chickpeas, and peas. Pulses are not only high in protein but they are foods packed with various other nutrients like B vitamins, fiber, minerals.
Why are lentils said to be a high protein food? It turns out that one serving or 1/2 cup of cooked lentils provides 8 grams of protein.
Thus, consuming pulses including lentils is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer.
Peanuts we often know as one of the nuts. Whereas the truth is part of the legumes and not the nuts. That’s why these legumes are high in protein where a 1 oz serving of peanuts provides 7 grams of protein.
For comparison: Almonds, walnuts, caschews and pistachios contain only about 5-6 grams per serving, while peanuts have fewer of them. Legumes or nuts are healthy foods that contain healthy fats, protein, and fiber which are healthy foods for consumption.
13. Pumpkin seeds
Another food that is high in protein is pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds are also a great source of plant-based protein for vegetarians. 1 ounce of roasted pumpkin seeds (perhaps about 85 seeds) provides 5 grams of protein, and 5 grams of fiber. You can chew it after removing the seeds from the skin, or as a sprinkling on top of your salad.
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Pumpkin seeds are not only high in protein but also include foods that provide significant amounts of iron, potassium, magnesium, and zinc.
Want to add protein to your daily diet, why not just try edamame.
Edamame is a soybean that is rich in nutrients, especially vegetable protein. This is the best high protein food for vegetarians or vegans. 1/2 cup of edamame provides 9 grams of plant protein, it also contains 4 grams of fiber in one cup.
Edamame is a grain that is rich in protein and fiber and provides a feeling of fullness. So, we say that edamame is a high protein food for weight loss. These foods will keep you feeling full longer and this will keep you safe from the urge to snack at any time.
Not only that, besides being rich in protein, edamame is also useful in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) so it is good for heart health.
15. Hemp seeds
The shape is small but hemp seeds are rich in protein. Just 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds you get 10 grams of protein, amazing!
Hemp seeds are the best high-protein food for vegetarians to meet their protein intake. Also, as a food in supporting bodybuilding among vegetarians.
Hemp seeds have a mild taste and are similar to pine nuts so they are not a problem when added to many recipes. You can add hemp seeds in salads, soups without fear of a prominent smell.
The taste is light and the smell is also light, so it is suitable to be collaborated with many recipes, even suitable to be added in smoothies and cereals though.
It’s not what you might think, it’s called “hemp Seeds” but that doesn’t mean it contains CBD oil. Hemp seeds are free of cannabidiol (CBD) or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Apart from hemp seeds, you can also try other seeds such as sesame seeds, sun flower seeds, and chia seeds, they are all rich in vegetable protein.
How can I Increase My Protein Intake?
To increase protein intake for the smooth functioning of the body, you can consume protein-source foods as we have mentioned above.
However, we do not recommend only consuming high-protein foods but must also be accompanied by other foods such as foods that contain carbohydrates.
Given that protein food sources already contain many other nutrients, then you can consume more protein foods than high-carbo foods.
For vegetarians, you can consume chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, edamame, hemp seeds and lentils. If you are non-vegetarian, it is easier for you to choose protein-rich foods to increase body nutrition. You can eat chicken breast, poultry, egg whites, shrimp and others.
What is the Vegetable Highest in Protein?
There are many foods from vegetables that are a source of protein. We have mentioned in the article some vegetables that you can rely on to meet the body’s need for protein.
What vegetables are high in protein? This is a question that vegetarians often ask. So, there are a number of vegetables that we say are high in protein content.
Among them are lentils, edamame, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, peanuts, nuts, legumes and others.