Protein Rich Meals And Snacks For Athletes

A professional nutritionist explains and tips about how much protein athletes should consume, and gives a few easy ideas for yummy protein foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner and of course snacks.

Protein is considered the building block of life. It is essential for the body to help repair cells and create new ones. Protein also aids in growth and development.

Greek yogurt is also high in protein with about 10 to 17 grams of protein per serving.

The Institute of Medicine recommends that adults get a minimum of 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. This equals about 53 grams of protein required each day for a 145-pound female. It is relatively simple to meet your protein needs for the day by eating a balanced diet. For those who are athletes, you may require more protein. Talk to a registered dietitian about specific protein needs.

BREAKFAST
Eggs are an excellent source of protein. One extra-large egg has 7 grams of protein. Have an omelette with 2 eggs, your choice of vegetables and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese. Greek yogurt is also high in protein with about 10 to 17 grams of protein per serving. Choose low-sugar kinds. Look for high-protein cereal with 8 grams of protein or more per serving. Add a cup of skim milk for another 8 grams of protein.

LUNCH
Make a tuna or salmon salad for lunch using plain Greek yogurt for 20 grams of protein per 3 ounces of fish. The addition of Greek yogurt is lower in fat and calories than mayonnaise and adds 3 to 4 grams of protein per one-quarter cup. Add your choice of vegetables such as chopped celery, cucumber and onion. Choose whole-grain crackers and low-fat cheese for lunch for 7 grams of protein per ounce of cheese. Take a whole-wheat pita and fill it with hummus, chicken and veggies!

DINNER
Cooked turkey breast and chicken breast are both high in protein and low in fat. Three ounces of cooked chicken or turkey have about 26 grams of protein. For an average woman, that is about half of the amount of protein that you need in a day. A vegetarian option is tofu which has 7 grams of protein per 3.5-ounce serving. Half a cup of pinto beans has 8 grams of protein. Some great ways to incorporate more beans into your diet is a nutritious soup or a bean and grain salad.

SNACKS
Snack on a half-cup of low-fat cottage cheese for 13 grams of protein. Have a cup of edamame for about 17 grams of protein. Nuts are also rich in protein and fiber but watch your portion sizes as calories and fat add up quickly. Blend up a smoothie with a cup of low-fat Greek yogurt, milk and fruit for a filling snack. You can customize with your favorite fruits and vegetables.

 




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