Tag Archive | protein

Steak, chicken or salmon for breakfast?

stock photo : meat table : rare medium roast beef fillet with asparagus served on white plate with cutlery over wooden table

At the beginning of my diet, health and fitness search like most people I wouldn’t eat breakfast at all thinking that I was saving calories and convinced that I ate less overall by not eating first thing.  The days when I did actually manage to eat breakfast were when I had been awake for hours and breakfast would usually consist of yet another cup of coffee accompanied by (on a good day porridge with butter and sugar) or on a bad day white toast, crumpets or something similar. Always followed up a couple of hours later by something sweet and hoping I could just get through until lunch!

A very early change to my diet was getting my head around the concept of eating breakfast (a) at all and (b) within an hour of waking up both of which were a real challenge to the way I thought about food. I have been slowly changing my diet over the last year and trying to get better at eating clean – I never ate lots of processed food or ready meals but the culprits for me were flour (in anything from bread to pasta), white rice, potatoes and obviously sugary stuff.

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Protein 101

stock vector : Hand drawn elements for your blog design

I love reading and researching diet, fitness etc and I have a few of my favourite websites/blogs – its good to try and cut through the nonsense and mis-information that populate the net so I would recommend Gnolls.Org; it has some good articles and definitely promotes discussions!

stock photo : Nutrition facts

Anyway, for everyone who has questioned the need to eat protein or wondered what you should be eating try this What Is Protein, And Why Do We Need To Eat It Every Day? 

 

High Protein Diets

stock vector : Low carb labels sticker for food product packaging, print materials, or website

With so much in the media lately about protein and carbs especially the idea that low carb is bad, high protein is good its useful to understand what the science really means.  After all, going primal or paleo is all about eating lots of protein and very little carbs; I have already written about Why Gluten Free so I thought it would be good to understand the pros and cons of eating all that meat!

I was pleased to see that someone I respect Charles Poliquin had written on the subject with an eye on dispelling some of the Myths About High-Protein Diets.

stock vector : 100 % protein, energy sports food stickers.For anyone interested in eating more protein, eating healthily and generally improving your diet, I would urge you to read the Poliquin article – it certainly puts things into perspective and goes a long way to answering all those people who think that protein is bad!!

Eat Fat and Protein to Lose Weight!

stock photo : 3D Protein Food High Crossword on white backgroundConfused? Well check out Charles Poliquin’s blog  Tip 361 which addresses the issues of high protein, low carb diets.  It’s the way I should be eating – I stress should cos cutting the carbs down to 100g per day is what I am struggling with at the moment – every day is a bit better than the last which is progress. Yay!!

The higher fat and protein content really does make sure you are full and the good carbs from veggies ensures you get the carbs levels plus the fibre together with vitamins and minerals.

stock vector : golden figure with red wood made in vector

Would love to know what diets work for you, what are your favourite diet recipes, what are your ‘good’ snacks.  What do you think of the high/low carb/protein debate?

 

Why I could never be a vegetarian!

I love meat  – right from the start lets just nail my colours to the mast. I have always enjoyed meat, my family are meat eaters (my stock photo : Fresh Raw Meat Background with Smoked Pork Chops, Beef Meat, Turkey and ground beefbrother briefly flirted with being a vegetarian for a couple of year but he came back to the fold!) and my children both love meat!

Long before I started trying to eat healthily or getting fit meat was always a staple part of my diet but, in reality it probably consisted mainly of chicken and the odd piece of beef when my parents cooked a roast dinner.  I was never that keen on steak – I would always have salmon rather than steak – and whilst I have always enjoyed meat, a full varied meat-eating diet wasnt a high priority. To be honest, I was kind of sick of the sight of chicken we had it so often!

So, when I tried to eat healthily,  my protein consumption from animals was pretty poor at around 40g per day and I was eating dairy and a few nuts to try and compensate.  When I upped my protein intake to around 80-100g per day and started HAVING to eat protein at every meal I rediscovered my passion for meat and now I am a complete convert – given a choice I would rather have a nice hunk of beef than almost anything else.

stock photo : Group of farm cattle with cattle and fields background

This week I took the levels of yumminess from ordinary standard beef to another level when I discovered some fantastic grass-fed beef;  there is a farm near my parents called Laverstoke Park Farm which sells the most amazing grass-fed beef but also sells free range organic pork, lamb and chicken and I am completely hooked!

The steak I had on Friday from there was probably the best, tastiest, piece of beef I have ever eaten and knowing how well the animals are looked after, how much care goes into the production of organic, grass-fed beef just makes it taste even better. I also bought an organic free range chicken as well and in all honestly it looks nothing like the bland anaemic looking birds you see in the local supermarket – just writing this is making my mouth water!

Meat in general is now centre stage in my diet and I probably eat steak at least three times a week (usually for breakfast); I love the protein hit I get from a good piece of beef and I am slowly widening the variety of meats I eat – saying that, I just can’t stand the taste of roast pork so that will not be making a reappearance, yuk!!

One of the reasons behind my newly discovered passion is that the more I learn about food, health, diets etc, the more I understand stock photo : Evolutionthat the foods we should be eating are the ones that are unadulterated and the ones that we genetically evolved to consume.  Part of our evolution did not involve eating white bread or grains (they are relatively recent additions to out diet) but we developed to eat meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, nuts and berries and they should form the cornerstone of our diet.  We evolved to be able to run at a high intensity for brief amounts of time, to run slowly or walk for great distances and to be able to handle periods of intermittent fasting or no food.

All of which is about a million miles from the average western diet which is packed full of highly processed foods, steeped in sugar, preservatives and chemicals, with little or no actual nutrition – combined with a highly sedentary lifestyle it really is no wonder that we have such an epidemic of obesity sweeping the western world.

Rant over (for now) off to go and enjoy a nice buffalo steak and some salad!

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy eating, information overload and confusion!

I’ve been thinking more and more lately about healthy eating, diets and weight loss, the information overload we are all exposed to and the stock photo : Salad of grilled chicken tenderloins with avocado, tomatoes, red onion, green beans, spinach and arugula.  Delicious healthy eating.continual exploitation by the media of people’s worries, fears and insecurities.

Watching a late night repeat of a Biggest Loser winner who had put most of his weight back on and has now lost it again reminded me of all the things I  dislike so intensely about that programme and others in a similar vein (the USA version of Obese a Year to Save my Life being another), namely that anyone can lose weight in a severely restricted, controlled environment – in fact it would be hard NOT to lose weight when you have to completely suspend your real life and your decisions about food and exercise are completely taken away from you.  The hard part is always losing weight or maintaining the loss whilst living a normal life, making everyday family decisions over food and dealing with normal life stress.

My complaint has always been that programmes like this and magazines publishing some z-list celebrity weight loss story only ever tell half a story and an airbrushed, edited, highly selective story at that. They simply don’t provide people with the real knowledge to make healthy choices and healthy decisions.  So, what happens?  People expect to lose weight overnight and are disappointed and demoralised when they don’t and those that do, often lose the weight on a restrictive diet and are surprised that it all goes back on again when they resort to their old eating habits.

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Living with the lion….Part 2

stock photo : Lion (8 years) - Panthera leo in front of a white background

It’s all very well learning to live with the lion outside your door but how about we take a leaf out his book (I know I’ve mixed my metaphors!) and learn to eat like one?

Having had my own personal nutrition/weight issues in recent years it was a bit of a light-bulb moment when I realised I was eating, at max, 1200 calories a day (and frequently much fewer) with as little as 40g of protein a day. And this is despite training 4-5 times a week; I was quite obviously not eating enough and definitely not enough protein!

Looking at inspirational books such as Rachel Cosgrove book “The Female Body Breakthrough” or “The New Rules of Lifting for Women – Lift like a Man, Look like a Goddess” by Lou Schuler its quite clear that the consistently recommended amount of protein is around 1g per lb of LBM but that overall the amount of macro nutrients consumed should be the rough proportions of 40/30/30 of carbs/fat/protein respectively.

On that basis most people could  seriously up their protein content!

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