With dieting’s emphasis on low-fat, low-carb, and low-calorie, one essential ingredient for weight loss is often left out of the mix: protein. Numerous studies, including one recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association have shown that skipping high-protein foods may lead to overeating and is often one of the biggest causes of excess weight gain. And as any devoted exerciser knows, protein is essential for the growth and repair of muscle and organs, especially after a hard workout.
When planning your healthy meals, keep in mind that 10 to 35 percent of your daily food intake should be lean protein. For women, that’s 46 grams a day; for men, 56 grams. If you make the right choices throughout the day, you can easily hit your protein targets.