Nearly everyone seeking a more nutritious lifestyle makes protein a priority in their diet. But do you ever stop and wonder why incorporating protein is so important? Or which high protein sources might be better than others? If you don’t, here’s your chance!
Let’s start with the basics: this well known macronutrient possesses an abundance of profound health benefits, ranging from strengthening muscles and bones to boosting your metabolism and satiating appetite. But in order to reap such benefits, you must first familiarize yourself with high quality sources of protein and understand how to optimally incorporate them into your diet.
Before we delve into these high quality, high protein foods, it’s important to understand the different types of protein sources. You might be thinking “hold up, I thought all protein sources were the same.” Well...we hate to burst your bubble, but that isn’t quite the case! The building blocks of proteins are amino acids. In total, there are 20 different amino acids, but your body can produce 11/20 of them all on its own! However, that leaves 9 amino acids that we must take in from the food that we consume, which is why these 9 are referred to as the “essential” amino acids. Foods that have all 9 essential amino acids are known as complete proteins (those without all 9 areincomplete proteins.) Without these essential amino acids, it is possible to become protein deficient even with what you might think is sufficient protein consumption.
The reality is that most Americans eat more protein than they even need to, averaging at 100 grams per day (the average adult man only needs around 56 grams!). To maximize the benefit of protein in your diet, the emphasis shouldn’t be on the quantity of protein, but rather, the quality of it.
So, now that you’re all caught up, it’s time to get to why you’re actually here! What quality, high protein food options should you look out for? Animal products such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy can be great additions to your diet; they are not only rich in vitamins and minerals, but also offer a complete protein source. Similarly, plant-based foods provide tons of necessary nutrients, but only a select few plants offer all 9 essential amino acids when consumed alone. These include hemp seeds, soybeans, quinoa, buckwheat, farro, and….drumroll please….Sacha Inchi seeds!
While options like these certainly make it possible for those cutting back on or entirely eliminating animal products from their diet to choose quality, high protein foods, this struggle is only amplified for those with allergies, sensitivities, or dietary restrictions. For this reason, the Sacha Inchi seed can be a real lifesaver! In addition to being allergen free, vegan, keto friendly, and nutritionally dense, the Sacha Inchi seed provides all the essential amino acids that your body can’t produce (can peanuts and almonds do that? we think not!)
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