The nutritional consensus is that people should consume the same number of protein in grams as their bodyweight every day. That’s especially true for those who live active lifestyles and keep up with a regular exercise routine.
Protein is vital to keeping your energy high and building your muscles back up after they’ve been worked or stressed. The problem can often be that we don’t get enough protein outside of a late evening meal. What we need are quick snacks that are nutritional and contain a high level of protein that will help get us through the day and help us reach that goal of matching our protein with our body weight.
If you can keep up your protein intake, you’ll have a much easier time keeping up your energy levels. In fact, you might even be less likely to feel the need for caffeine throughout the day as a result of consuming an adequate amount of protein.
The best way to do this is to know which foods to target during meals and for snacks. We’ll cover foods that are quick, easy to prepare and high in protein.
1. Cottage Cheese – Cottage cheese is good with either fruit, or tomatoes and pepper if you prefer something salty. It’s incredibly easy to prepare and eat, not to mention light on your stomach. Eating this along with your breakfast or as a snack in the middle of the morning or afternoon will do a tremendous job of keeping up your energy levels and preventing your from crashing right before mealtime.
2. Chunked Mozzarella – You might be more familiar with the term “string cheese”, which is a perfectly acceptable form of mozzarella cheese. However it might be shaped, mozzarella will help curb hunger while giving you six grams of protein per ounce. Have it with a meal or as a pre-workout snack.
3. Almonds – A quarter cup of almonds will net you eight grams of protein. They’re easy to transport and eat in just about any scenario. Use them to stave off hunger and increase your energy. They’re most typically utilized as a snack food.
4. Black Beans – Black beans have a lot of protein, though they’re harder to eat quickly than some of the other foods listed here. The place where they can be the most helpful is during your lunch. Use them to stretch out the mid-day meal and increase the amount of protein that you consume. Lunches can be pretty skimpy when it comes to protein so even just including black beans as a side instead of potato chips will have a lot of benefits in terms of your energy levels.
5. Milk and Yogurt – Adding a glass of milk or a cup of yogurt to your breakfast will give you an extra 15 to 20 grams of protein on top of whatever you’re already eating. One good way to get yogurt into your meal (aside from just eating it as a side dish) is by making a smoothie and using vanilla yogurt as the base instead of ice.
Targeting the right foods throughout the day is far more important than how much caffeine you can get when determining your energy levels. If you find ways to work these foods into your diet and even get close to matching grams of protein per day with how much you weigh, you’ll definitely see a significant spike in your energy levels.