Protein diets for weight loss is only for men – WRONG

Actually, anyone can go on this diet. The point is that your man won’t mind going on the diet together with you.
When other attempts in the fight against obesity have failed, many people decide on protein diets and find themselves surprised that such diets actually work. However, there are always downsides, such as the harm that you may inflict on your health if you not careful.

Protein diets involve a complete or partial rejection of carbohydrates. The diets consist of animal and plant proteins. Following such diets allow you to lose up to ten kilograms within a half of a month. Protein nutrition is particularly good for athletes, people leading an active lifestyle, and for those who cannot imagine their lives without meat.

Benefits of a high protein diet

Protein diets have gained in popularity due to its high efficiency and the absence of restrictions on protein foods. The basic concept has remained the same – a lack of sugar leads to weight loss.

Carbohydrates – the main source of energy. Excess sugar is stored as fat for lean times. It is known that one molecule of glucose splits into two molecules of lipids. However, if the food lacks carbohydrates, the body is forced to start a fat splitting process to provide you with the needed glucose. Being on this kind of diet for a week, you may lose up to 5 or 7 kg. The good thing is that the abundance of protein prevents the loss of muscle tissue. Protein is important not only for weight regulation but also elements of metabolism.

Here are some rules to follow if you want to achieve desired results:

  • proteins should comprise of at least 60% of your daily intake,
  • the amount of fat should not exceed 30 grams,
  • eat at least 4 meals a day,
  • do not overeat,
  • breakfast – a half an hour after waking up, dinner – two or three hours before bedtime,
  • before lunch you may eat a couple of citrus fruits, a minimal amount of complex carbohydrates is allowed,
    lunch and dinner should include non-starchy vegetables,
  • Flax chips, almond nuts, organic oatmeal cookies without sugar and fat are ok snacks,
  • use herbs, apple or wine vinegar to season your food, do not use salt,
  • Instead of sauces or mayonnaise – unsweetened yogurt,
  • forget about alcohol,
  • do not use sweeteners, they hinder the body from weaning off sweet cravings,
  • sweets, pastries, and canned foods are not allowed,
  • Boil, stew, bake or steam your food,
  • drink a lot of water, at least 1.5L,
  • be sure to do some exercise.

If your diet includes some carbohydrate days – separate them from the protein ones.

Animal and plant protein

Proteins are made up of amino acids, eight of which are essential, twelve are replaceable. The body uses them as a building material – they form tissues, enzymes, and hormones. The need for amino acids changes with age.

The foods we get proteins from:

  • Eggs, dairy products, meat, fish, offal, seafood,
  • Nuts, legumes, buckwheat, quinoa.

Optimal ratio

Usually we combine animal and plant proteins in our diet. Despite their inferiority, plant proteins contain many nutrients and play an important role in the functioning of the body. The optimal ratio of animal and plant proteins is 60 to 40 respectively. For those of old age, it’s better to have this proportion – 50 to 50.

Low-carb, –fat foods high in protein

foods high in proteinDepending on the diet, the amount of protein in foods varies from 60% to 90%. They include:

  • Meat. It is better to choose lean ones, for example, turkey, chicken, beef, rabbit, and lamb,
  • Fish, seafood. Choose low-fat varieties,
  • Eggs,
  • Dairy products without sugar and sweeteners,
  • Tofu,
  • Mushrooms: Oyster mushrooms, champignons,
  • Legumes: Soybean, peas, green beans,
  •  Nuts.

Pay attention to fat content when choosing dairy. It should not be zero, otherwise the protein will not be digested. The best fat content is around 5% but not more.

Carbohydrates in a protein diet

Some diets assume a total phase-out of carbohydrates. These are the most effective, but can be dangerous options that can lead to serious harm to your health.

More balanced protein diets do not imply a complete abandonment of carbohydrates, they distinguish between harmful and beneficial carbs. The first are completely cut out, the second are limited.

Why you should not cut out carbohydrates
Carbohydrate starvation leads to ketosis – a poisoning caused by a decomposition of proteins. On the one hand, it forces the body to get energy from stored fat, on the other hand, it impairs kidney function and can even trigger genetic disorders.

Required minimum
For a noticeable weight loss, the minimum amount of carbohydrates while you are on a protein diet is about 50-100g per day. In this case, the release of insulin is reduced and fat is burned.

If you consume more than 100 grams of carbohydrates, you must engage in additional sport activities. Consuming less than 50 grams provokes ketosis. It is only useful during the first two or three days of the diet to initiate the process of losing weight.

What carbohydrates cannot be eaten during the diet?

carbohydrates bannedRegardless of the weight loss method, you should cut out certain carbohydrates from your diet: sugar, flour, starch – and all products that contain them.

  • Sweets like honey, chocolate, jam,
  • Pastry and confectionery,
  • Pasta, any dough,
  • Snacks like chips, cornflakes,
  • Instant porridges, muesli,
  • Ice cream,
  • Sweet berries and fruits, such as grapes, persimmon, banana,
  • Any dried fruits.

What carbohydrates can you eat during the diet?

Include vegetables, a minimum amount of cereals, unsweetened berries, and fruits in your diet to improve metabolism. These foods make up for the lack of vitamins and the negative effects of ketosis.

carbohydrates allowedChoose non-starchy vegetables:

  • all kinds of cabbage,
  • leafy greens, spinach, arugula,
  • radish,
  • tomatoes,
  • cucumbers,
  • Bulgarian peppers,
  • zucchini,
  • eggplants,
  • celery,
  • turnip,
  • fresh onion, garlic.

fruits on protein dietYou can eat 4-5 spoons of boiled buckwheat, brown rice or oatmeal before lunch. Some kinds of protein diets allow the consumption of whole-grain bread in small quantities.

Eat fruits and berries before lunch:

  • unsweetened green apples,
  • citrus fruits like oranges or grapefruits,
  • Kiwi,
  • currant, strawberry, blueberry,

Basic rules for a protein diet

To make sure the diet does not cause any harm, follow these rules:

  1. The diet should mostly consist of protein. Calorie content – no more than 1000 kcal,
  2. Combine plant and animal proteins at a ratio of 1:1,
  3. Additionally, take vitamins and mineral supplements,
  4. Do sports, count calories, do not forget to drink water.

Water drinking regimen
Getting poisoned by the byproducts of protein breakdown affects the face colour, worsens skin, hair, and disrupts the functioning of the internal organs. The kidneys are forced to work harder in an attempt to remove the ketones. Therefore, fluid loss increases. To avoid the negative effects it’s recommended to drink at least 1.5 l of water a day.

Daily regimen of food
Thanks to structure of this diet you feel full for a long while, and the stomach is not stretched. You should have a meal 4-6 times a day. Each portion should not exceed 250 grams.

How long can you be on a protein diet

duration of protein dietNutritionists do not advise being on a protein nutrition for a long time. Otherwise, cholesterol increases, which increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Swelling and clogging of the kidneys with protein byproducts causes a whole range of various diseases.

To protect yourself from the negative consequences, do not maintain the diet for more than two weeks once a year. A safer option is having one for 7 days – in this case, you can repeat the diet every six months.

Extreme express diet for 3 days
You can get rid of 1-3 kilograms in a short amount time. The diet is an option for those who want to get into shape before an important event, after holidays, etc.

Unlike longer options, this diet is quite strict: in addition to protein foods, some fresh, non-starchy vegetables are allowed. You can eat no more than three times a day.

Stick to the following menu:

  • For breakfast – a boiled egg.
  • For lunch – 150 grams of 5%-fat cheese curds.
  • Dinner – boiled lean fish or chicken breast with a vegetable salad.

No snacks. In between meals, you can drink water or green tea.
You feel a bit tired during the days on this diet, since the digestion of protein foods requires a lot of energy. During glucose starvation, metabolism slows down too while the body is trying to get rid of protein byproducts. Therefore, you should not to plan any physical or highly intellectual activities on these days.
The express protein diet is not recommended for people with kidney diseases.

For 5 days
Long-term diets have a number of contraindications. However, five days of a protein diet will not do much harm. You can lose up to 5 kilograms of excess weight.
Be sure to drink 1.5-2 L of water every day. Drink the first glass on an empty stomach, half an hour before breakfast. Follow the general rules for protein diets. Eat periodically at least six times a day.
Despite the short duration of the diet, if you have liver, kidney or heart disease consult your doctor beforehand.

7-, 10-, 14-day diet
The general rules are the same – pay attention to the amount of water you drink; cut out fatty, sweet foods; eat non-starchy vegetables.

Day Breakfast Second breakfast Lunch Snack Dinner
Monday 160 g of 5%-fat
cheese curds,
coffee or tea
One green apple Chicken soup Natural yoghurt Steamed fish,
vegetable salad
Tuesday 160 g of 5%-fat
cheese curds
One grapefruit Stewed beef
with vegetables
A glass of
180 g of boiled
Wednesday 2 boiled eggs and a cup of green tea or coffee Kiwi Stewed turkey with pea mash Cheese curds with yoghurt and some berries 180 g of baked fish with the same amount of fresh vegetables
Thursday Buttermilk, 2 sugar-free oatmeal cookies One orange 250 g of steamed chicken and asparagus A glass of buttermilk 200 g of steamed fish and vegetable salad
Friday 160 g of 5%-fat cheese curds and a cup of green tea or coffee One green apple 200 g of steamed fish with 4 tablespoons of  buckwheat A glass of yoghurt 180 g of baked chicken with cheese, fresh greens
Saturday Omelet (2 eggs). Tea or coffee One grapefruit Boiled beans A glass of buttermilk with raspberry Stewed beef with vegetable salad
Sunday Cheese curds. Tea or coffee Strawberry Mushroom soup or chicken with vegetables A glass of yoghurt Steamed fish with vegetable salad
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