Protein is essential — and plant-based protein is the healthiest around
As a bodybuilder, the key philosophy for years was to eat enough protein daily.
The problem was that protein was derived from animals, and the theory was that plant-based protein contained far too many carbs.
Too many carbs could inhibit fat loss or increase bloating and water retention.
These days we’re smarter in our thinking (I hope so, anyway).
I had learnt my lesson because the changes to my health when I eliminated animal protein and focused on plant-based varieties were remarkable.
Most of my gut issues, bloating, and water retention are now a thing of the past! So I can imagine how much inflammation was going on in my body.
For years I was plagued with the thought that plants would never give me enough protein. But that’s not true!
We need to ensure we spread our protein intake during the day, so we don’t overload our gut and have ample supply to help increase and maintain muscle growth.
Nuts aren’t the only source of protein you can eat, but they are a very healthy and handy snack on hand that you can munch on in moderation.
So please include them in your breakfasts, lunch and snacks. A little goes a long way.
Here are the most powerful protein-packed nuts you should eat daily.
Like me, you may love peanuts — especially peanut butter!
Now, these aren’t nuts — but a legume and have been given a lot of slack over the years.
Peanuts are very high in protein
and contain 25.8 grams of un-roasted.
They tend to diminish in protein when roasted and have salt added.
I recommend avoiding processed nuts and sticking with organic or activated peanuts as much as possible.
Peanuts also contain
folate, antioxidants and amino acids. Most people I come across love peanuts; having a spoonful in your protein shake or a snack during the day is not hard.
However, keep away from these guys if you have an allergy.
These nuts are wonderful and are the perfect brain food around (hence why it looks like a brain).
Walnuts are filled with polyunsaturated fats and polyphenols and enhance your brain health.
In addition, walnuts can decrease oxidative stress and inflammation — which naturally occur as we age.
Walnuts are also high in healthy
omega-three fatty acids, including alpha-linolenic acid, decreasing cardiovascular disease.
As with peanuts and almonds, walnuts contain a lot of fibre derived from the skin.
Therefore, you can make walnut consumption part of a healthy diet that will also assist you in managing your weight and helping you attain the feeling of fullness.
If you are a vegan, grind nuts to make a meal, and use them as a meat-like alternative.
Don’t apply much heat to them, though, as they can burn and become rancid.
They are healthy snacks to eat regularly.
Almonds are pretty much as popular as peanuts — because they are so delicious and readily available everywhere.
Almonds enhance your snacks and desserts and are a staple in many baking recipes (think almond meal etc.).
They provide much more fibre and vitamins than your average white flour, which is much better for you.
On a nutritional level, almonds contain a lot of beneficial heart-friendly monounsaturated fats, fibre and protein, which makes this a wonderful snack that enhances weight management.
Most of the antioxidants
of a nut are found in the skin
, so be sure to include it when eating, and don’t pick a blanched almond meal for your cooking adventures (As the healthy skin is removed).
Key take away
These tree nuts are some of the most popular and widely available in most parts of the world and are used in many meal alternatives and staple snacks.
I urge you to alternate with different nut alternatives and swap them to get the widest array of nutrient values possible.
For example, seeds are a great add-on to your nut mix, and I always use pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
They may be small yet contain a lot of added nutrient value (plus they are great for your skin and hair!)
Keep the portions within a palm size, and go easy on them.
I like to eat my nut mix with my fruit for the day, and it gives an added boost of fibre and helps keep me full.
What is your favourite nut mix alternative, and when do you eat your nut portion?
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