Protein is a necessary nutrient for growth and health. While a balanced diet provides plenty of protein, sometimes a little extra can help give some extra energy. It can also help balance out the effects of too much sugar or help keep blood sugar levels stable. A menu for one day of high protein breakfast, lunch and midafternoon snack includes plenty of meat and other good sources of protein, such as dairy and eggs.
Protein is a chain of amino acids that are essential for building tissue and for energy. It is found in many types of foods, but is especially plentiful in products derived from animals, such as meat, eggs and dairy goods. It is also plentiful in beans and cereals. Not all protein is the same, however, and protein found in cereals may not be processed by the body as readily as protein found in meat. The amount of protein required by each person depends on sex, age and health as well as certain medical conditions.
Eggs are full of protein and make a quick and easy breakfast. They can be boiled, poached, fried, scrambled or whipped into an omelet. Season your eggs with ranch-flavored dry mix for some added flavor. Add ham or bacon to the egg for extra protein, or serve with a small breakfast steak for a large punch of protein. Other high protein breakfast foods include yogurt, cheese and milk. Soy milk offers even more protein than cow's milk. Nuts, in the form of peanut or soy butter, are also simple to incorporate into breakfast by spreading them on toast or an English muffin.
Sandwiches are a simple way to make a high protein lunch. Lunch meats are high in protein. Use whole grain bread for a little extra protein and add a bean salad on the side to raise the protein level even higher. Try a creamy tomato dressing in your bean salad for a delicious, slightly sweet flavor. Healthier meats that have plenty of protein and less salt and preservatives include tuna, grilled chicken and roast beef. Add these meats to a sandwich or a healthy salad topped with a creamy dressing. Top the sandwich or salad with cheese, which also contains plenty of protein. Keep your meat and cheese sandwich from becoming dry by spreading some mayo, mustard or creamy dressing on the whole grain bread.
A midafternoon snack high in protein can help increase energy while avoiding the rebound effect of many sugar-laden snacks. Great afternoon snacks that are high in protein include raw or ranch-seasoned roasted nuts, beef jerky, protein shakes, cheese and fruit, cottage cheese, lentils or peanut butter spread on fruit, such as bananas. Many high-protein foods that are good for breakfast or lunch also make a good midafternoon snack, such as yogurt, tuna, a boiled egg or a small salad topped with chicken or beef and creamy dressing.
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