Everywhere you look there is a push for the “best” diet out there. Some people say the Ketogenic diet, others the Paleo diet, and even some say the vegan diet. While I don't believe that one diet is superior to another for everyone, i will say that I personally do believe that any diet that focuses on whole foods and includes animal meats will produce you the most bang for your buck when it comes to nutrient intake, an often overlooked aspect of dieting that in most cases can have an astounding effect on results. Firstly, protein is important because it is responsible for repairing the torn muscle cells that occur after each workout through muscle protein synthesis. When we weight train we are purposefully tearing the muscle so that through our nutrition it will grow back stronger than it was before. This is the basis of all nutrition, to help us fuel and recover from our activity in day to day life. Consuming a diet high in protein will increase your satiety and help keep you comfortable while in a caloric deficit which is ideal for weight loss purposes so that you don't have to fight that feeling of hunger. Plus there is no conclusive evidence that too much protein damages your kidneys in any way and unless you are a world class bodybuilder you probably aren’t at risk of overconsumption of protein as most people under consume more commonly. This is an old myth that needs to go away because based on modern day diets and availability of processed foods it would be very hard to over consume protein. There is plenty of research that has proven that just by someone changing their diet to whole foods they will consume less calories. I like to use the analogy of a chocolate bar to prove this. It is so much easier to eat 2 or 3 or 4 Twix bars (My favorite) than it is to have a bowl of oatmeal even though you will get very similar macro nutrient results.
2 Twix Bars = 250 Calories, 34g Carbs, 12g Fats, 2g Protein
Bowl of Oatmeal (½ cup) = 150 Calories, 27g Carbs, 3g Fats, 5g Protein
Now just thinking about this you already know you are going to feel more full and satisfied after an entire bowl of oatmeal than quickly pounding back 2 Twix bars. Meal preparation has a huge impact on all this. Let's say it takes about 3 or 4 mins to make the oatmeal with whatever you add to it, I always add strawberries, blueberries, and some peanut butter. Now you sit down to eat it and it takes another full 5 minutes to eat it. Nearly 10 minutes has elapsed. By simply extending the amount of time it took for all of this to occur you will feel more satisfied, because it is easy to wolf down 2 Twix bars in under 1 minute and leave you standing there saying “i'm still hungry what's next?” Before your body can even comprehend that it just consumed 250 calories. If you prioritize protein in every meal that you eat, you are following the winning formula. No longer should someone say i just need to cut back on my carbs to lose weight. You're looking at it all wrong! By restricting yourself you make it harder to stick to this. Instead, try “i need to prioritize protein” and i guarantee you will consume less calories, feel and look stronger, lose inches, gain muscle, and love the way you feel. Isn't that the ultimate goal anyway? You mIght as well give it a shot!