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In the last few years, there’s been this obsession with adding protein to manufactured foods.
Everything from Protein Mars Bars to Protein Coffee, Protein Weetabix and Protein chocolate chip cookies… It’s all gone a bit mad.
Thing is, there are plenty of ‘normal’ foods that are naturally loaded with protein.
The following list will give you an insight into our top 10 normal food sources of protein.
The average adult requires 0.75g of protein per kilo of body weight. This equates to about 45g of protein for a woman and about 55g of protein for a man.
If you’re more active, then it’s beneficial to consume more protein to help the growth and repair of your body.
One of the benefits of consuming more protein, certainly from the sources we list below, is you’ll need less calories consumed to feel fuller.
This is definitely a bonus if your goal is to lose a bit of weight.
Let's get into the list.
|Food Source||Protein per 100g||Calories per 100g||kcal per gram of protein|
|Whey Protein Isolate||86g||402 kcal||4.6|
|Greek Yoghurt||10g||59 kcal||5.9|
|Turkey Breast||29g||189 kcal||6.5|
|Beef - Sirloin Steak||27g||244 kcal||9|
|Cottage Cheese||11g||98 kcal||9|
Treat the final column like a “bang for your buck” rate… with the top rated food source having the lowest Calories for every gram of protein.
In the real world we don’t just eat 100g of each food stuff. For example 100g of egg is approximately 2 large eggs, but an 8oz sirloin steak is 226g, and whey protein isolate is normally just 30g per serving
The benefit of each food stuff shouldn’t just be about the protein content. Focussing on just the number of grams of protein is short sighted, despite the obsession with labelling high protein foods with just this one indicator.
Let's dive in to each food source and get in to the real world stuff...
A tin of tuna is such a simple and versatile thing. Normally around 140g of tuna per tin, it’s the perfect single serving portion for adding to a salad, making a toastie or adding to a baked potato.
Along with its super high protein content, you’ll also benefit from the mega Omega 3 content. If you go for fresh rather than tinned, you’ll get 4 times the amount of Omega 3.
We’re talking about chicken breast here. Whilst the thighs and wings have equally decent protein figures, they are a bit more fatty and calorific.
Also a decent source of Vitamin B-6, which is great for brain health, specifically mood and depression. And also a good vitamin for heart health too.
The average chicken breast is about 170g, So you’ll get your Protein RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) from just that. A fantastic way to ensure you're topped up each day.
With a pot of greek yoghurt from your local supermarket normally 150-200g this is a convenient snack that’s got a decent protein whack.
You’ll find greek-style yoghurt which is usually the same as greek yoghurt. It all depends on where it's made.
I normally add, banana and dried fruit in to a pot, perhaps with some local honey for an amazing dessert that’s not a carbohydrate horror show.
Outside of Christmas in the UK we rarely eat turkey. Which is a shame because it’s a great tasting food with figures that match chicken for protein content, and like chicken is a good source of Vitamin B-6
It’s one of those meats you can cook off a bird on the weekend, and it’ll provide meat for a week or two for lunches and dinners.
OK, I’m a big fan of a decent quality steak. And whilst I don’t eat a steak too often, I mostly eat just at restaurants. It’s a fantastic source of protein, if a little fatty.
Your average 8oz steak will net you a full RDA of protein, as well as a good Vitamin B-6 source too.
Known more for it’s low fat properties as a cheese, Cottage cheese is the king of cheesy protein sources.
Although consuming 100g of cottage cheese might prove a challenge in one sitting. A normal serving of cottage cheese is about 30-50g.
Perfect for chucking on your salads or in a baked potato for the ultimate low fat lunch.
I’m a huge fan of salmon, especially smoked salmon slices that I add to my ‘perfect’ breakfast of scrambled eggs and smoked salmon.
That breakfast means I have protein and omega 3 fats needs packed in, first thing. It’s certainly better than sugar and carb packed cereals that seem to be the norm!
Alternatively a fillet of salmon from the local supermarket is about 90-100g, and shallow fried or grilled is a delicious lunch meat to add to a salad, of a low fat dinner.
As mentioned in the salmon section, eggs make up my perfect breakfast. Normally I’d consume 2 or 3 eggs per day. The Omega 3s, vitamin D & B-12 as well as the high protein levels make eggs almost the perfect food source.
Eggs have had such a bad rep over the decades, 99% of it unfounded. We buy ours direct from a local farm, the yolks are much stronger coloured, and the egg holds together better for poached eggs compared to supermarket bought eggs.