Lean protein foods are important because they keep you full longer and they do so without giving you too many unwanted calories. Your body needs proteins to build muscles and to repair tissue damage, but it doesn’t need all the extra calories and fat that comes with red meat.
Before you continue eating high calorie meats consider changing your diet to include some of the most powerful lean protein foods. Like the top superfoods these foods pack a lot of nutritional value into each bite.
1. Eggs Whites
Eggs are a nice way of getting some extra protein in the morning. Eggs by themselves give you 7 grams of protein and only 2 grams of saturated fat. All of the saturated fat is concentrated in the yolk part of the egg, so if you remove that you get a fat free breakfast.
Studies have also shown that eating eggs for breakfast can help to lower your appetite for the rest of the day. People who consumed eggs for breakfast ate less calories for lunch and dinner than people who consumed other breakfast choices.
More information about eggs and their ability to lower your appetite can be found here.
Protein doesn’t have to come from dead animals. Beans are a good source of protein for vegetarians and health food nuts alike. ½ cup of beans can give you as much protein as an ounce of broiled steak.
Beans are also packed with fiber which helps to keep down your appetite so that it is easier to stay on a healthy diet.
3. Pork Chops
Pork chops are a forgotten lean meat which can be tasty and easy to make. It can certainly measure up to other lean meat sources. 3 ounces of pork chop loin is just 120 calories and 3 grams of saturated fat.
Compare this to the standard skinless chicken leg (which itself isn’t really bad for you) that has 162 calories and 7.1 grams of saturated fat for the same serving size.
4. Ground Sirloin
If you are looking for ground beef look no further than ground sirloin. It is the leanest of all ground beefs with just 200 calories per each 3 ounce serving.
5. Lean Cut Chicken And Turkey
When it comes to chicken and turkey everyone knows that white meat is better for you than dark meat. But another important factor to take into consideration is how it was cut.
Anything with loin or round in the name means the meat is healthier and has less fat in it than other meat.
A second thing to watch out for is something called marbling. Marbling increases fat and calories in your diet. Foods that are “Prime Cut” have the highest amount of marbling in them while foods such as “Select Cut” and “Choice Cut” have significantly less marbling in them.
6. Dairy Products
Dairy products such as yogurt and milk can have a lot of protein in them as well. The downside to dairy products is that they can be pretty fattening if you are not careful.
Eating low fat yogurt can be a great way to get the protein and calcium your body needs while taking in fewer calories.
Fish is not only a lean source of protein, but they also carry the healthy fatty acid Omega-3. This is why the American Heart Association recommends eating at least 2 servings of fish a week.
Cod can be one of the best lean protein foods as 3 ounces contains only 89 calories and .7 grams of saturated fat.
Buying fresh fish and flash frozen fish can be a great way to receive much of the protein associated with fish. Buying fish from a can is also a great bargain as canned fish tends to be caught naturally as opposed to farm grown.
Shellfish such as clams, lobsters, scallops, and shrimp are healthy choices for dinner or a snack. 4 large shrimp give you 4.6 grams of protein and is only 22 calories.