It seems many of us are obsessed with diets.
No doubt you’ve tried (or at least heard of) them — from high-fibre and high-carb to low-carb and low-fat.
Then of course, there’s the high-protein diet.
From shakes and powders to fish, eggs, poultry, and grass-fed meats, many of us are heavy consumers of protein.
Who should actually be eating a high-protein diet?
Here are the four groups of people who can benefit from a high-protein diet.
1. People who put on weight easily
If you’re prone to gaining weight, a handful of extra protein a day could be the help you need.
Tom Rifai, a regional medical director at the Henry Ford Health System, said evidence suggests a high protein diet can make you feel fuller. Apparently, protein takes longer to digest and stabilises your blood suger – lowering your desire to eat.
“During weight loss you want more protein to prevent hunger, enhance satiety, and minimise muscle loss,” Mr Rifai says.
Studies say it’s as simple as eating a daily serving of beans, lentils or peas – provided there’s some physical activity.
2. Middle-aged people
As you get older, you face the inevitability of losing muscle, but it turns out eating more protein can counter that.
David Katz, director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, says older adults would benefit from more high-quality protein in their diet to slow the loss of lean muscle mass. Studies show if you’re aged 52 to 75, doubling the recommended daily allowance of protein can make you better at building and keeping muscle.
To counter the high cholesterol and other cardiovascular issues, that extra protein is better found in beans, seeds, nuts, fish and whole grains than eggs, dairy or red meat.
3. People with high sugar, high carb diets
Hitting the sugar and the carbs such as bread and pasta too much? You might benefit from shifting your diet towards higher protein foods.
Katz uses the rule “more tuna, fewer doughnuts”.
“If you’re getting a higher percentage of calories from protein, you’re getting less of the other stuff, like added sugar and carbohydrates,” he says.
While few of us over the age of 60 would be body building, if you’re doing taxing exercises that tear down your muscle tissue — then some extra protein could be a benefit.