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The high protein diet has become one of the most popular diets around these days. The idea behind it is simple, no matter what your goals are, everyone can benifit from eating a high protein diet and eating high protein foods. Whether your goal is to increase muscle, gain weight and get big, lose weight and lose fat, get and/or stay lean, this type of diet is right for you. There are many reasons why it is one of the only types of diets around that can be effective for so many different people with so many different goals and bodies. However, depending on exactly what your goal is (weight loss, weight gain, gaining muscle, etc.) little changes will have to be made to it. First, lets look at why this type of diet is so effective.
Your body needs protein, and lots of it. It is the building block of muscle, which is why eating a high protein diet with high protein foods is EXTREMELY important for anyone looking to increase muscle, gain weight/get big, or anyone just looking to build muscle. Without enough protein in the body, muscle mass will not increase. During your weightlifting and strength training workout, your muscles are getting broken down. In order to rebuild and repair your muscles, your body needs protein. It is as simple as that.
So now your wondering how a high protein diet can be effective for someone trying to lose weight and lose fat, right? Well, it is just as simple. Most high protein foods are extremely low in carbs and extremely low in saturated fat (which is the fat that you DON'T want to eat). Therefore, by eating a high protein diet loaded with high protein foods, at the same time you'd end up eating low carb foods and low saturated fat foods. And, if you didn't already know, in order to lose weight and lose fat, eating low carbs and eating little or no saturated fat is a MUST.
Some high protein foods are:
lean meats and beef
fish (just about every fish is high in protein, anything from tuna fish, to salmon, to shrimp)
There are many other high protein foods, but these are the basics.
The next question you probably have is how much protein should there be in a high protein diet. Anywhere from .5 grams to 2 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight will be good, but try to stick closer to 1 gram per pound. So, if you weigh 175lbs, eat 175 grams of protein everyday, whether you worked out that day or not. I eat a little over 1 gram of protein per pound, and most people who are looking to gain weight, get big and increase muscle should also try to eat at least 1 gram per pound a day, or a little more then that. Someone looking to lose weight can and should eat at least 1 gram per pound as well.
Now you must be thinking about eating a high protein diet and eating 1 gram per pound, so you must be saying "yeah right, 1 gram per pound, how the hell am I supposed to eat that much protein??" Well, a lot of people have this problem. Not many people have time to make high protein foods like chicken breasts all day long or bring tuna fish around with them all day. This is where protein supplements come in. Protein shakes (which are just the powder mixed with any liquid you want) and bars are the perfect solution. Drinking your average shake with 2 scoops of protein powder will give you 30+ grams of protein, and it only takes a minute to make and drink. The average bars also have about 30 grams each, and are the size of your average candy bar, so they are very easy to carry around with you. For more information on these protein supplements like bars, powder, and shakes, click here.
Last but not least, when are the most important times to eat high protein foods. There are 3 "most important" times. These times are first thing in the morning after you wake up, last thing at night before you go to bed, and directly after your workout. However, remember that the main point of eating a high protein diet is to give your body the protein it needs all day long, which is why it would be a good idea to eat a meal once every 3 hours or so this way your body will always have what it needs.