woman doing curl up in the gym

The Power of Protein: How It Aids in Weight Loss and Muscle Building

A wide variety of diet programs are available for people who are trying to commit to a healthier lifestyle or those who want to shed excess pounds. Terms like ketogenic diet, low-carb intermittent fasting, and paleo diet are just some of the buzzwords you can hear from your health-conscious peers.

Almost all dieters who are trying to lose weight limit their carbs and fat consumption because they know that excessive servings of these macronutrients can be fattening. But not many are aware of the role protein plays in weight loss and maintenance.

Lose Weight while Building Muscles

Unlike the two other macronutrients, fat and carbs, the human body doesn’t store protein. So it doesn’t have a reservoir to draw from when it needs more protein supply. The body constantly uses protein to repair tissues and cells and build bones, cartilage, skin, blood, and muscles. It’s also necessary for producing enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals.

Because it serves as the body’s basic building block, most muscle-builders commit to high-protein, low-carb nutritional plans to gain muscle mass and shed fat simultaneously.

Protein is also the most filling macronutrient, according to studies. Eating a protein-rich diet can make you more full with less food. This is because protein can reduce appetite by inhibiting the hunger hormone ghrelin and boosting the ones that make you feel full. This is why protein shakes and bars are popular among people who are trying to lose weight. By reducing hunger and appetite, there is an automatic reduction in calorie intake.

Boosts Metabolism

Protein also boosts metabolism, meaning it enables your body to burn calories faster. After eating, the body uses some of the calories to digest and metabolize food. This is known as the thermic effect of food. At 20 to 30 percent, protein has a higher thermic effect compared to carbs (5 to 10 percent) and fat (0 to 3 percent).

Because high-protein food burns calories at a faster rate, protein-rich diets can make you feel less bloated compared to high-fat or high-carb ones.

The Importance of Proper Dieting

couple in workout clothes preparing high in protein snacks

What these diet fads have in common is the emphasis on receiving the appropriate amount of macronutrients, particularly fat, carbohydrates, and protein. But different bodies and different fitness goals require different dietary plans and nutrition intake. It’s important to remember that these diets are not one-size-fits-all.

Nutrition specialists, like Salt Lake City’s MD Diet Clinic, can help you establish a personalized dietary plan that suits your body and fitness goals, whether it’s losing weight, toning up, or building more muscle mass. They may perform a series of tests, including a medical exam and nutrition monitoring to determine your body composition and what it needs.

This knowledge will protect your body and mind from the dangers of extreme dieting. You want to be fit and healthy, and following risky eating habits achieves only the opposite. So before you commit to a diet plan, consult your physician to ensure that you are on the right track toward achieving your healthy lifestyle goals.