Protein is highly essential for any diet plan, or anyone who wants to gain muscle, whether in their abdominals area or in their biceps.
Protein, which provides four calories of energy per gram, is the building block of muscle and amino acids are the building blocks of protein.
There are vital amino acids, which are ones that you MUST get from the diet because your body cannot produce them, and there are non-essential amino acids that your body already has enough of.
Protein helps support lean muscle tissue, aids in the production of hormones and enzymes and supports immune function. Exercising individuals have higher daily protein requirements than inactive individuals, since exercise increases the body’s need for protein.
Since protein is necessary to build muscle, it can actually help speed up metabolism, because it takes energy to maintain lean muscle at rest. This allows individuals to lose more fat in the areas they don’t want fat.
So now that you know how vital protein is, what are the top 10 recommended proteins?:
Casein- This is a milk protein that seems to have a timed-release effect and a high glutamine content, which can enhance exercises recovery and boost immune function. Casein is clinically proven to increase lean muscle mass and strength, and is considered to be one of the best nighttime proteins.
Milk Protein Isolate- This contains both whey and casein and is a good source for these two proteins.
Soy Protein Isolate– This vegetarian protein source has been shown to enhance thyroid hormone output, which can increase metabolic rate to support fat loss. There are certain isoflavones in soy that have numerous health benefits, including lowering cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Whey Protein- This highly absorbable protein provides the highest concentration of the branched chain amino acids, which play a HUGE role in the muscle building process and weight loss process, and even supports the immune function. Hydrolyzed whey protein has some of the benefits of whey, while providing highly absorbable peptides that can have muscle building effects.
Chicken Breast– This is a relatively low-fat, high-quality protein source. It contains numerous doses of different branched amino acids and has a good potassium-to-sodium ratio for improving the balance of water in your system.
Sirloin Steak– A lean protein source with an excellent potassium-to-sodium ration, it provides heme iron and good amounts of the amino acids that support energy and lean body mass.
Egg Albumin– This traditional protein source boasts great amino acids, and cooked egg whites are the highest source of egg albumin protein.
Tuna– This is a very lean protein source that provides an excellent amount of branched chain amino acids. Canned versions make it easy to use and help with portion control.
Orange Roughy Fish– Another lean protein source with an outstanding potassium-to-sodium ratio. Orange Roughy is a good source of the amino acids that promote lean body mass and muscle building, along with weight loss.
Salmon– Yet another lean protein source, that is most famous for the amount of amino acids found in its source. Strong source of protein that provides muscle building and supports energy.