Meatless Protein

Recently, I’ve cut back on my meat intake.  No, not because I watched the Netflix movie about how meat is bad for you.  No, not because I watched some video on Facebook about how animals are taken care of and how the meat is processed.  I decided to cut back on my meat intake because of how it makes me feel.  When I eat meat, sweets, or anything really heavy I get sleepy and tired which results in me taking a nap.  I personally, don’t have time for naps.  With work, my workout schedule and my personal life, naps are not an option right now.  I need all the energy I can get so I can make the most of the 24 hours I have in the day.

After I slowly removed different meats from my diet, I ran into another problem. Protein. I wasn’t getting enough protein in my diet.  To add-on to my protein-less meals, I was still eating ice religiously.  Therefore, my iron was incredibly low…which is bad as well.

I had to find alternatives for protein and I had to stop eating ice.  Not only was this demolishing my energy levels, this could possibly be slowing down my weight loss process.  Ice decreases the iron levels in your body.  Not only does iron carry oxygen in your red blood cells, it’s also used to make energy and metabolize protein.  Therefore, if I’m constantly consuming ice, my iron levels will be low and I won’t even have the energy to work out.

Making lifestyle changes is more than just eating low carb and low-calorie foods.  It’s more than just working out and running 100 miles a day.  What you put in your body is very important.  Eating nutrient rich foods that fuel your body will speed up your weight loss process significantly.  Also, finding nutrient rich foods that you like will also help you maintain your weight when you reach your goal.  You won’t feel like you’re on a diet, you’ll simply feel like you’re just eating food you normally eat.

I’ve been experimenting with different sources of proteins and I’ve found a few alternative options that I’ve been incorporating into my diet for the past few weeks.

  1.  Gardein Seven Grain Crispy Tenders  

    These are DELICIOUS.  I just add a little BBQ sauce and I’m good.  I usually pair these with tater tots or brussels sprouts and that fills me up.  If you’re just getting into meatless meats, this is definitely a place to start.  The texture isn’t that far from meat, It doesn’t look really weird and if you put them in the oven, they get crispy.

  2. Gardein Classic Meatless Meatballs
    These are pretty good as well.  I usually add these to my spaghetti squash in order to give myself some protein.  I just toss them in the oven when my spaghetti squash is cooking.  Then I add them on top if my “spaghetti” with some sauce, of course.

  3. Beyond Meat 100% Plant Protein Beastley Sliders

    These are phenomenal!  One patty is 23 grams of protein.  I eat it just like a regular burger.  It came in handy over the labor day weekend, not only is it meatless, its full of protein and it tastes like it came straight off the grill.  I go ahead and add all the extra stuff I like and enjoy.

  4. Justin’s Peanut Butter Blend Honey

    This is my new favorite snack.  I used to eat a large bag of the white cheddar popcorn almost once a day (its bad, I know).  But now I’ve replaced it with this.  I buy them in the little packets because I’m usually eating them at my desk at work, or right after a workout.  They’re so easy to eat on the go and their perfect for throwing in your purse/bag on a busy day.  They have around 7 grams of protein and they taste great.

  5. Traditional Protein Shake
    Last is the traditional protein shake.  I use protein powder that I found at Kroger.  I’m still trying to find a protein powder that works for me.  The one I have tastes pretty good and I don’t have any complaints, but I’ve never tried anything different.  So if you have any suggestions, please let me know.  I usually purchase a chocolate protein powder and add frozen strawberries, blackberries, a banana, and some chocolate almond milk.  I don’t use it as a meal replacement and I usually drink it after my morning workout and breakfast.

If you’ve been trying anything new, please let me know.  I’d love to try it and see how it works for me!

Trying new/different foods can be expensive, I know.  So I usually try new things over a period of time and not all at the same time.

Be sure you’re eating nutrient rich foods that fuel your body.  Its more than just eating low-calorie food.  Don’t be out here malnourished because you’ve been consuming -5 calories every day.  My next step is going to be incorporating more fresh veggies into my diet.  I’m making my progress and I’ll keep you posted!

Please be sure to leave your feedback and/or suggestions in the comments below. Or feel free to email me at alexandria1.orange@gmail.com!

 

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