Including a combination of protein and fiber at your meals and snacks could hep you lose weight more easily. Protein and fiber can make you feel fuller with fewer calories, so you start to burn off your stubborn fat without having to starve yourself or go on any kind of special diet. Understanding how these nutrients work together will help you prepare balanced meal plans to either achieve a healthier weight or prevent weight gain.
Protein is found in highest amount in animal foods such as meat, poultry, eggs, fish, seafood and dairy products, although vegetarian options also contain small amounts. Protein promotes satiety to a greater extent than carbohydrates and fat, according to an article published in the May 2008 issue of the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.” In addition, protein increases thermogenesis, the production of heat by your body. In other words, protein boosts your metabolism. Adding protein to your diet ensures that the weight you lose is fat and not muscle because protein helps you maintain your muscle mass.
Although fiber is not digested, it plays important roles beyond promoting regular bowel movements. One of them is maintaining satiety. Fiber takes a lot of space in your stomach without providing any calories, which can help you feel fuller with less food. A type of fiber called soluble fiber also absorbs a lot of liquid and forms a gel-like substance that makes you feel fuller. Soluble fiber also slows down the digestion process so you have a more even and sustained release of energy in the hours following your meal.
Low Glycemic Carbohydrates:
Combining protein and fiber with low-glycemic carbohydrates can help you maximize your satiety after eating. Although each of these nutrients uses a different mechanism to make your feel fuller, they can work together to help you feel even more satisfied with fewer calories, which is key to successful weight loss and long-term weight maintenance. Low-glycemic carbohydrates are digested at a slower pace and can help you maintain more even blood sugar levels to prevent the hunger and cravings associated with blood sugar crashes. Low-glycemic carbohydrates are found in non-starchy vegetables, fruits, sweet potatoes, plantain, yucca and sugar-free dairy products.
Below is my favourite energy bites recipe for you:
Super Seed Chocolate Protein Bites:
- 1 cup packed pitted Medjool dates (12-13 large)
- 1/4 cup hulled hemp seed
- 1/4 cup chia seed
- 1/4 cup sesame seed
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste
- 1/4 cup raw cacao nibs (or mini dark chocolate chips)
1. Add dates into processor and process until a chunky paste forms.
2. Add in the hemp, chia, sesame, cocoa, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Process until thoroughly combined. Pulse in the cacao nibs. The dough should be sticky when pressed between your fingers. If it’s not sticky enough to shape into balls, add a small amount of water (a teaspoon at a time) and process until it comes together.
3. Shape dough into small balls (about 16) and freeze for 20 minutes or so until firm. Store leftovers in the freezer until your next snack attack hits.