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How to Boost Your Protein Intake – Quickly and Easily

Increasing your protein intake is a common goal for many of us, whether you’re an athlete looking to enhance performance, someone trying to lose weight, or simply aiming to improve overall health.

Protein is essential for building and repairing tissues, making enzymes and hormones, and maintaining muscle mass. Basically, it’s really essential to your overall health.

You’d be surprised how little protein many of us eat if we’re not conscious of what we’re eating. Despite this, incorporating more protein into your diet doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming, with the right high protein recipes.

In this article, we’ll explore quick and easy strategies to boost your protein intake, offering practical tips that can fit seamlessly into your busy lifestyle.

From simple dietary adjustments to convenient meal ideas, you’ll discover how to meet your protein needs and live a healthier lifestyle!

High Protein Breakfast

Breakfast often gets overlooked as a prime opportunity to boost protein intake.

Traditional breakfast choices like toast or cereal tend to be high in carbohydrates and sugars but low in protein. And many people even miss breakfast because they simply don’t have the time! 

By rethinking breakfast and making an effort to prioritise protein-rich foods, you can really improve your overall nutrient balance and start your day with sustained energy. 

Incorporating protein into breakfast might seem like a big ask, especially as breakfast is often a matter of speed over nutrition when life gets busy. But, with the right ideas, it can be as simple as making a few strategic swaps and additions. Here’s a few examples. 

Eggs are a fantastic, versatile option for a high-protein breakfast. Whether scrambled, boiled, poached, or made into an omelette, eggs provide a substantial amount of protein along with essential vitamins and minerals. 

Adding vegetables to an omelette or serving eggs with a side of avocado not only enhances the nutrient profile of your meal but also boosts its fibre content. 

For those mornings when you’re pressed for time, hard-boiled eggs can be prepped way in advance and stored in the fridge, ready to grab on your way out the door. Pairing eggs with whole grain toast or a small portion of lean meat, such as turkey bacon or smoked salmon, can further increase your breakfast protein intake too.

If you’re not a savoury breakfast person, greek yoghurt is another excellent breakfast choice, offering twice the protein of regular yoghurt. It can be enjoyed on its own, mixed with fruits and nuts, or blended into smoothies for a creamy texture and additional protein punch. 

By making these small adjustments, breakfast can become a powerful meal that supports your goals of including more protein into your diet. 

One of our favourite quick and easy breakfast options to boost your protein intake is our egg muffins. They’re quick and easy to make and can be stored in the fridge, ready to be eaten whenever you need them. 

Discover the full recipe here. 

High protein snacks

high protein snacks

Swapping out unhealthy or low-nutrient snacks for high-protein options is a simple yet effective way to enhance your diet and support overall health. 

Many common snack choices, such as crisps or chocolate, are high in refined sugars and unhealthy fats while providing little nutritional value. And here at Elevated, we’re always focussed on bringing more nutrients into your diet. 

These snacks can lead to energy crashes and increased cravings later in the day. By choosing high-protein alternatives, you can stabilise blood sugar levels, sustain energy, and keep hunger at bay between meals. High-protein snacks not only provide essential nutrients but also promote satiety, helping to manage weight and reduce the urge to overeat.

Nuts and seeds are excellent examples of protein-rich snacks that are easy to carry and convenient to eat. Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, chia seeds, and pumpkin seeds are all nutrient-dense options that offer a good balance of protein, healthy fats, and fibre. 

A small handful of these can make a satisfying snack that curbs hunger and provides steady energy. Pairing nuts with a piece of fruit, such as an apple or a banana, adds natural sweetness and additional vitamins, making for a well-rounded and nourishing snack. Pre-packaged, portion-controlled nut packs can also be a handy option to prevent overconsumption.

For those who prefer something more substantial, incorporating dairy or plant-based protein snacks are also a great idea. 

Greek yoghurt or cottage cheese, for instance, are excellent sources of protein and can be enhanced with fresh fruits, honey, or a sprinkle of granola for added flavour and texture. 

Cheese sticks or slices paired with whole grain crackers or fresh vegetables like bell pepper strips or cherry tomatoes are another tasty, protein-packed snack option. 

Plant-based alternatives such as hummus with carrot sticks, roasted chickpeas, or edamame offer great protein content and are perfect for those following a vegetarian or vegan diet. 

By making these healthy swaps, you can significantly boost your protein intake throughout the day, support muscle maintenance, metabolism, reduce overeating, and improve your overall health too. 

One of our favourite ways to get in a good serving of protein, in an easy, delicious way is through smoothies. That’s why we’ve created plenty of highly nutritious, flavoursome options as part of our subscription. 

Discover them all here.

Choose Lean Meats

Choosing lean meats over fattier options is a smart way to increase your protein intake while maximising nutrition too. 

Lean meats, such as chicken breast, turkey, and lean cuts of beef or pork, are rich in protein, making them an essential component of a balanced diet. 

By opting for lean cuts of meat in recipes where you might usually go for something fattier (like in a pasta, consider turkey or low fat mince rather than high fat beef!), you can enjoy the protein benefits without the excess saturated fat and calories found in fattier cuts, which have also been linked to health issues such as heart disease.

In addition to being protein-rich, lean meats are also excellent sources of essential nutrients, including vitamins B12 and B6, niacin, zinc, and iron. 

These essential nutrients are vital for energy production, brain function, immune health, and red blood cell formation. 

Choosing lean meats ensures that you’re not only getting the protein your body needs but also a wide array of micronutrients that are essential for overall health and well-being. 

Plant Based Proteins

plant based protein from almonds

It can feel much harder to get more protein into your diet, if you’re vegan or vegetarian. 

However, there are more plant-based proteins available now than ever. Some are processed, but if you look to the more nutritious, unprocessed options, you’ll be surprised how much is out there.  

Legumes, such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas, are excellent sources of protein, fibre, and essential nutrients like iron and folate. 

Adding these plant-based proteins to your meals not only boosts protein content but also contributes to satiety and supports digestive health too. 

Just be sure to get a good variety of plant-based proteins in, because only soy and quinoa have a full amino acid profile, meaning you need to mix it up more if you’re vegan than a meat eater or vegetarian who eats dairy products. 

For meat-eaters, integrating plant-based proteins into meals also provides an opportunity to explore new flavours, textures and enhance nutritional value, while also reaping the health benefits associated with plant foods. 

Additionally, mushrooms, nuts, seeds, and whole grains like quinoa and farro are excellent sources of protein that can be incorporated into meals to add depth and complexity of flavour while increasing protein intake.

Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or a meat-eater looking to diversify your diet, incorporating plant-based proteins into your meals offers numerous health benefits.

By including a variety of legumes, tofu, tempeh, and other plant-based sources of protein, you can enhance the nutritional value of your meals, support overall health, and contribute to a more sustainable food system.

Batch Cooking and Food Prepping

Food prepping is a powerful strategy for increasing protein intake quickly and easily while maintaining consistency and organisation in your diet. It’s a strategy we use a lot here at Elevated, as it ensures we’re always getting healthy, nutritious meals for ourselves and our family. 

It’s why we recommend creating our Brilliant Bases in batches, so you always have something healthy on hand throughout the week.

By dedicating a portion of your time each week to preparing meals and snacks in advance, you can ensure that protein-rich, nutrient dense foods are readily available when hunger strikes. 

This not only saves time during busy weekdays but also helps you make healthier choices by reducing reliance on convenience foods that may be lacking in protein and nutrition.

When it comes to protein, food prepping allows you to cook large batches of high protein meals in advance. These protein-rich dishes can be portioned out and stored in the fridge or freezer, ready to be enjoyed at a moments notice.

Additionally, you can prepare plant-based protein sources like beans, lentils, or tofu in bulk, providing versatile options for salads, soups, stir-fries, and more. Having protein-rich foods prepped and portioned ahead of time makes it easier to build balanced meals and snacks, ensuring that you meet your protein needs consistently.

For more information on food prepping, check out this blog written by James, about how he preps all his nutritious meals well in advance.

 

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