Home Articles High-protein diet: Mistakes that can cause weight gain, sabotage your weight loss...
Want faster weight loss without starving yourself? They said to go on a high-protein diet. Protein breaks down slower than carbs, so you did feel fuller for longer. We need it to have energy, build and repair muscle, process nutrients, and boost immunity, among other vital roles. About 20% of the human body is made up of protein. Because your body does not store protein, it’s important to get enough from your diet each day.
So, you took the plunge. Went on a high-protein diet. Eating enough protein helped you to lose less muscle as you shed weight. Your metabolism has been revved up, and you love binging on lean meat, dairy, nuts, seeds, and legumes.
But now you see the weight loss plan faltering, the kilos are coming back. What could you have done wrong? You were following the high-protein diet for weight loss!
Too much protein! You got the maths wrong!: “I think people don’t understand that protein still has calories,” Bonnie Taub-Dix, RD, creator of BetterThanDieting.com and author of “Read It Before You Eat It” told the Women’s Health portal. “No matter how much protein you’re eating, consuming more calories per day than you burn off will always lead to weight gain,” adds nutritionist Emily Kyle, RD.
Too much meat and no plant proteins, that is a bad idea: You can get protein from many food sources, including plants and animals. Some people claim that the source of the protein, whether animal or plant, shouldn’t matter. Stephanie Cramer, administrative dietitian at Cedars-Sinai Clinical Nutrition Services is quoted by the hospital website on the issue. “Animal proteins, such as meat, eggs, and milk, are complete proteins, meaning they provide all of the essential amino acids our body needs. Animal products provide the highest-quality protein sources… On the flip side, several studies have linked red meat consumption to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and early death,” says Cramer. She also said that increased consumption of processed meats like smoked meat, sausage, hot dogs, salami, bacon, and canned meat increases the risk of dying from heart disease. “Certain plants can be excellent sources of protein, often with fewer calories and fewer potentially harmful effects than animal products. “Some plant proteins, such as quinoa, are complete proteins—which means they contain all 9 essential amino acids that we need. Others are missing some amino acids, so it is important to eat a variety of foods to get all 9,” Cramer says. So, on your high-protein diet, you should consider balancing it with some plant protein as well. Studies show that people on vegetarian or vegan diets (which often rely on plant protein) are at a lower risk of certain diseases including cancers, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and ischemic heart disease. If you binge on meat protein sources, “…those excess calories don’t go to your biceps. They turn into fat,” says Taub-Dix.
You have cut out carbs drastically: Popular diets tend to make either carbs or fats the enemy, but protein foods are usually absolved of any fault. Cutting out too many carbs can put a damper on your mood and make your body crave starch and sugar, which can lead to binges. When people are on strict protein diets, the sugar-coated doughnuts look so inviting. And then you binge. So, the key is in balancing the percentage of protein and carbs on your plate. “Opt for complex carbs (quinoa, oatmeal, brown rice, veggies), lean meats and legumes (chicken, turkey, almond butter, beans), and sources of healthy fats rich in omega- 3s (salmon, avocados, walnuts, olive oil), and you’ll find yourself naturally striking the right symmetry,” Taub-Dix said.
Are you exercising enough? Or have you put the entire onus on the diet plan? Remember, weight loss is not all about not eating less than you usually did. You do know that your daily intake of calories cannot exceed the burning of calories in the same duration if you want to lose weight. Also, to keep your muscle tone, and to ensure cardiovascular health, you do need to exercise. So get cracking on that and burn those excess calories as your fitness doctor told you.
Fibre is missing from your diet: You need your daily recommended intake of about 25 to 30 grams of fibre daily. enough fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. “One way to ensure you’re eating a healthy amount is to use the plate method,” says Keri Gans, RD, author of “The Small Change Diet”. “One-quarter of your plate is protein, one-quarter of your plate is carbs, and half your plate is veggies.”
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a professional healthcare provider if you have any specific questions about any medical matter.