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Protein day celebrates all sources of nutrition

 

February 27, 2020



If you look deep enough, you’ll find that every day celebrates at least one aspect of our lives. Thursday, February 27 is a day to celebrate protein. Yes, protein - the building block that nourishes our blood, bones, cartilage, hair, muscles and skin.

Although protein was first introduced by Gerardus Johannes Mulder, a Dutch chemist, in 1838, National Protein Day has received more support since 2006 when a federal study found that diets rich in protein helped decrease hunger by increasing the feeling of fullness compared to a diet lower in protein, resulting in weight loss. In addition, protein increases metabolism allowing our bodies to burn more calories naturally.

Just last year, Wake Forest University released that “a high-protein, low-calorie diet helped overweight older adults lose more pounds, maintain more muscle mass, improve bone quality, and lose ‘bad’ fat,” further supporting the argument that protein assists in maintaining a healthy weight.

Although chicken is the most popular protein source consumed by Americans, there are plenty of other sources rich in this macronutrient. Per 100 grams, turkey breasts provide 29 grams of protein, black beans provide 21.6 grams, oats have 17 grams and pistachios contain 20 grams. Also high in protein are eggs (6 grams per egg), cottage cheese (25 grams per 225 grams) and Greek yogurt (17 grams per 6 ounces).

Fish are a great protein source, although different species provide different amounts. Commonly labeled as being mostly protein are tuna, salmon, halibut, trout, cod, haddock, pollock and tilapia. It is easy to get over 25 grams of protein in less than 100 grams of many fish varieties.

Celebrate National Protein Day by incorporating an alternative protein source to your diet such as quinoa, tofu, nuts, seeds, veggies, edamame or lentils. The National Academies of Sciences states the recommended daily allowance for protein in adult women be 46 grams and 56 grams for adult men. Differences in age, muscle mass and activity levels can change diet requirements. To optimize your health through diet, consider seeking the advice of a nutritionist to get you on the right track.

 

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