As the new year begins, most people vow to make a fresh start with resolutions that are usually about losing weight or addressing a health concern.
Weight loss can be challenging and usually involves making changes in your daily routine. Most people set an ambitious goal because they are excited about the idea of change, but it's easy to become overwhelmed and lapse back into unhealthy habits. Rather than completely changing your lifestyle, make small daily goals. Be consistent, and eventually they will become a habit.
For example, start off the day with a balanced breakfast that includes protein. Research suggests that at least 25–30 grams of protein per meal may help increase your feeling of fullness, aiding with weight loss and maintenance. Many people typically have a breakfast that consists of mostly carbohydrates from breads and cereals.
- Add in the Protein: Add Publix GreenWise Whey Protein Powder to oatmeal or your favorite smoothie.
- Egg to Go: Whip up a 3:1 ratio of egg whites to whole eggs scrambled with veggies and low fat cheese. Roll in a whole-wheat tortilla for a breakfast on the go.
- Mix-it-up Parfait: Combine Greek yogurt with your favorite fruit and muesli.
- Side of Sausage: Publix GreenWise Chicken Sausage is a great addition to either pancakes or waffles.
- Fast Food Swap: Make your own fast food breakfast sandwich to go with a whole-wheat English muffin, a slice of low fat cheese and egg.
Don't Pass on the Protein
Protein is an essential macronutrient for your body! Proteins are used in skin, hair, nails, muscles, and bone composition and are involved in many enzymatic processes in the body.
Protein increases the feeling of fullness you get after you finish a meal. As protein can help you control your appetite, this can also lead to positive secondary effects on weight management.
Source: "Protein, Weight Management, and Satiety." The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. April 29, 2015.
Protein can also manage your weight by helping to maintain lean body mass, which can increase the amount of calories that you burn in a day. Over 40% of protein in the body can be found in your skeletal muscle. Your ratio of lean muscle mass to fat mass affects the calories that are needed daily for body maintenance and weight maintenance. Compared to fat mass, lean muscle mass is more metabolically active, which means that a higher lean muscle mass can increase your energy expenditure.
Source: "The Role of Protein in Weight Loss and Maintenance." The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. April 29, 2015.
The Dietary Reference Intake, or DRI, for protein is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight, or 0.36 grams per pound of body weight. This amounts to about 56 grams of protein per day for the average man and about 46 grams of protein a day for the average woman.
Source: "Dietary Reference Intakes: Macronutrients." The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Taking Steps Toward Better Health
The journey toward healthy living isn't always easy, but there are many great resources that can provide tips and information to help encourage you along the way.
- OVERALL HEALTH - Health Tip: Say ‘Yes’ to Yogurt
- OBESITY - What are the Benefits of a High-Protein Breakfast?
- HEART HEALTH - Protein and Heart Health
- DIABETES - Whey Protein May Blunt Blood Glucose Spikes
- AVOIDANCES - Gluten-free is Not Always the Way to Be