Protein Power! Snack Away!

There is little doubt that the typical person in a western culture consumes more daily calories than he or she needs. We tend to supply our kitchens with snacks filled with fats and sugars which provide us with hundreds of extra calories that our bodies could do without. With today's technology, we are now able to find protein packed bars, drinks, soups, and nuts. These new snacks no longer taste like cardboard, but give us the flavor we want without the empty calories of sugar or the quick high followed by the inevitable crash.

Protein snacks have many differences from the old sugar cookies that our grandma used to bake. Let's take a look at how protein power can help us get slimmed down and looking our best. To begin, protein sends specific signals to the brain. These signals cause our body to feel full and satisfied. This in turn, means that we will be more likely to control our appetite, and snack less than if we continued to eat sugars and fats. The result is simple. We will cut our calories and have more control with our weight. According to Dr. David Heber, recent clinical research supports this physiologic phenomenon.

A second reason for choosing protein to snack on is that it has a better thermogenic effect. The thermogenic effect is basically the metabolic effort that it takes our body to digest a food once we have ingested it. Our body must work much harder to digest protein than it does to digest sugar or fat. What does this mean for you? Basically, when you choose to eat protein over sugar or fat, your body will have to burn more calories in order to digest it. This is a great benefit because protein is usually low in calories, so our bodies are working harder, or burning more calories, on fewer calories.

Muscle is a third reason to choose protein snacks over sugars and fats. Our body's constantly need to restore the building blocks of muscle tissue. Muscle is important for many reasons. Obviously, we couldn't move without them or complete our daily activities. But, muscle also determines our metabolism. The more lean healthy muscle mass we are able to maintain in our bodies, the higher our metabolism will be, and that high metabolism helps us to stay lean throughout our lives.

Now when you want to reach for a snack, think for a moment and choose a protein-rich bar, drink or soup. Get the high-calorie cookies, cakes, chips and sweets out of the house. They all generally have more calories without providing our bodies much nutritional value at all. Eat fewer calories, give your metabolism a charge, and say goodbye to hunger throughout the day!

Jim is a personal wellness coach who helps people reach their weight loss goals and lead more healthy and active lives. He has a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Northern Colorado and has worked in the field of health for over ten years. To learn more about getting healthier and more active visit Jim's website at:
http://www.visionquestnutrition.com

This article was published on 02 Jun 2009 and has been viewed 439 times
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