Whether your goal is to lose weight or increase muscle mass, protein intake is vital. Each type of protein has its amino acid profile. The reasons why most people are obsessed with high protein diets are numerous and very well-founded.
First and foremost, we need this macronutrient to build, maintain and rebuild muscles after training. High protein diets generally include large amounts of protein and only a tiny amount of carbohydrates. As a matter of fact, there are well known high protein diets, including the Atkins Diet. However,you can achieve a high protein intake, with or without adjusting the intake of other food groups.
In addition to helping you lose weight, protein gives the body some other essential benefits. Proteins provide enzymes that fuel thousands of chemical reactions in the body. They also help the body maintain and repair hair, skin, muscles and bones and produce hormones that help organs and cells communicate with each other.
Proteins also provide amino acids. There are 20 amino acids, 9 of which are essential to get from the diet because the human body does not produce them. Proteins from animal sources tend to contain all amino acids, so people call them complete proteins. In contrast, many vegetable proteins provide only some amino acids, which means you will need to combine them with other protein sources to get all the essential amino acids.
In the following article, we will share some high-protein low-carbs snacks that you should include in your diet and advise the potential adverse effects of adopting this diet.
BEST HIGH-PROTEIN LOW-CARB SNACKS
Achieving optimal daily intake is not always an easy goal, so it is best to eat foods with maximum protein content. That’s why choosing the right foods carefully is essential when eating a high-protein low-carb diet.
We have compiled below a list of the most suitable delicious snacks that will bring you an optimal protein intake with a low carbohydrate content.
1. Turkey Salad Rolls With Turkey Breast
The turkey breast can be eaten in a snack, not necessarily in the form of a bread sandwich. Replace the slices of bread with fresh lettuce leaves and eat them together with one or two slices of turkey breast, a few slices of bell pepper and mustard. This snack contains less than 3 grams of carbohydrates, and due to the meat proteins, it contributes to the rapid installation of satiety.
2. The Classic Boiled Eggs
Rich in healthy fats and proteins, boiled eggs are a true ally for figure and health. Boil an egg, cut it in half and season it with a drop of spicy sauce for extra flavour. You will consume less than 1 gram of carbohydrates, you will bring a high-quality protein intake, and you will successfully resist the dangerous culinary temptations until dinner time.
3. Apples With Cheese
The combination of cheese proteins with dietary fiber always ensures the installation of a full state of satiety and the development of digestive processes in optimal conditions. In addition, the combination of sweet and salty taste is preferred by many people in a snack. Slice an apple (without peeling it) and eat it with a few cheese slices for a maximum intake of 10 grams of carbohydrates.
4. Greek Yoghurt With Fresh Cucumber Slices
5. Avocado With Expanded Rice Biscuits
6. Berries Cheese
7. Mix Nuts And Seeds
8. Hummus With Fresh Bell Peppers
In Arab countries, humus is traditionally consumed and can be eaten in many forms. When you feel the need for a snack, you can eat it on a generous slice of bell pepper (red, yellow or green). This reinterpreted hummus variant will bring you a rich dietary fibre intake, protein and vitamins, and only 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving.
9. Tomatoes Stuffed With Salmon
A salmon sandwich will always contain a significant amount of carbohydrates. To reduce your carbohydrate intake, however, you can make a snack from a medium tomato stuffed with a few slices of salmon. That will provide you with only 4 grams of carbohydrates in exchange for a generous portion of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants (lycopene), vitamins and minerals.
10. Quinoa Salad
Unlike other vegetable protein sources, quinoa provides complete protein, which means it has all nine essential amino acids that the human body cannot produce on its own. Quinoa is also very rich in manganese, phosphorus, magnesium, folic acid and thiamine. Mix cooked quinoa with bell pepper (red, yellow or green), a few slices of onion, tomatoes, cucumbers and olive oil to get a healthy, low-calorie salad.
11. Slices Of Celery With Peanut Butter
12. Shrimp Salad
Due to the many nutritional benefits they have, shrimp is considered one of the healthiest foods in the world. They are an excellent source of high-quality protein, including all nine amino acids in the right proportion for the body to function perfectly.
In addition, they contain some of the essential vitamins and minerals that make up a healthy diet. Very useful in diets for weight loss, shrimp have a shallow caloric content and contain extremely healthy cholesterol. One hundred grams of shrimp contain only 115 calories, twice as much as the same amount of chicken and three times less than beef. Cooked with cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, garlic and ketchup in a salad, they can be a great snack.
13. Greek Yoghurt With Almonds
14. Turkey And Cheese Ham
15. Beef Pastrami
HEALTH BENEFITS OF A HIGH-PROTEIN LOW-CARBOHYDRATE DIET
Low carb diets limit the amount of carbs a person eats. Instead of carbohydrates, people focus on eating protein or fat. Carbohydrates are one of the three main types of food that the body needs to function correctly. The other two are protein and fat.
Carbohydrates give energy to the body. If the body does not need to use carbohydrates for energy as soon as a person eats them, they will be stored in the muscles and liver for later use. However, if the body does not use these stored carbohydrates they will be turned into fat.
Many people follow diets high in protein and low in carbohydrates, based on the fact that if the body does not receive extra carbohydrates, it will not retain excess fat. The basic idea is that the body will burn some of the stored fat instead of carbohydrates, which will promote fat loss and weight loss.
Research in the 2003 New England Journal of Medicine found that people on a low-carb diet lost more weight than those on a low-fat diet after six months. On the other hand, proteins can gradually release carbohydrates into the blood, which will have the effect of reducing the risk of diabetes.
Studies show that protein also plays an essential role in speeding up fat metabolism, reducing LDL cholesterol levels and giving you a long-lasting feeling of satiety, so you don’t eat more than you need to. By reducing the level of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases decreases.
The feeling of satiety offered by protein is beneficial for those who adopt such a diet to lose weight, thus leading to a limited calorie intake. There is a whole body of research on the role of proteins in short-term weight loss and muscle mass accumulation. However, further studies are needed to determine the long-term effects of a predominantly protein diet.
POTENTIAL RISKS OF A HIGH-PROTEIN LOW-CARB DIET
Most people can easily follow a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates, at least for a short time.
Although some studies indicate that high protein intake may adversely affect the kidneys, other research shows that people with healthy kidneys will not experience side effects. However, clinical evidence suggests that people with kidney disease should not adopt a high protein diet. Similarly, it appears that people at risk for kidney stones should avoid high-protein diets, especially those that include high amounts of animal protein.
Although short-term studies show that high-protein diets can help you lose weight, it is essential to note that there is no research on the long-term effects of high-protein diets on overall health.
In addition, diets that limit carbohydrates can also be harmful to health. Children and adolescents may be at risk of malnutrition due to consuming an insufficient amount of carbohydrates.
Proteins are macronutrients made up of amino acids and are the body that builds, maintains and restores skin, hair, bones and especially muscles.
Carbohydrates have a role in providing energy to the body. Excess carbohydrates will be deposited as a fat layer.
A diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates can benefit cardiovascular health and help you lose weight to gain muscle mass. With some proper planning and substitutions, most people can follow such a diet.
However, such a diet may not be the best long-term health choice because there is insufficient scientific evidence.
When you want to follow a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet, it is essential to eat healthily and not abuse foods. Always consult a medical doctor or a health professional before making any significant changes to your diet.
HealthxTips is committed to delivering content that adheres to highest standard for accuracy, sourcing and objective analysis.
HealthxTips uses only high-quality and trustworthy sources to support the facts in our articles.
1. Alma, M. H., Nitz, S., Kollmannsberger, H., Digrak, M., Efe, F. T., & Yilmaz, N. (2004). Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the essential oils from the gum of Turkish pistachio (Pistacia vera L.). Journal of agricultural and food chemistry, 52(12), 3911–3914. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf040014e
2. Ibrahim, N. A., El-Seedi, H. R., & Mohammed, M. M. (2007). Phytochemical investigation and hepatoprotective activity of Cupressus sempervirens L. leaves growing in Egypt. Natural product research, 21(10), 857–866. https://doi.org/10.1080/14786410601132477
3. Ikei, H., Song, C. & Miyazaki, Y. Physiological effects of touching hinoki cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa). J Wood Sci 64, 226–236 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10086-017-1691-7
4. Kuriyama, H., Watanabe, S., Nakaya, T., Shigemori, I., Kita, M., Yoshida, N., Masaki, D., Tadai, T., Ozasa, K., Fukui, K., & Imanishi, J. (2005). Immunological and Psychological Benefits of Aromatherapy Massage. Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM, 2(2), 179–184. https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/neh087
5. Orchard, A., & van Vuuren, S. (2017). Commercial Essential Oils as Potential Antimicrobials to Treat Skin Diseases. Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM, 2017, 4517971. https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/4517971
6. Orhan, I. E., & Tumen, I. (2015). Potential of Cupressus sempervirens (Mediterranean Cypress) in Health. The Mediterranean Diet, 639–647. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-407849-9.00057-9
7. Selim, S. A., Adam, M. E., Hassan, S. M., & Albalawi, A. R. (2014). Chemical composition, antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity of the essential oil and methanol extract of the Mediterranean cypress (Cupressus sempervirens L.). BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 14, 179. https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6882-14-179