NNMC Picking Protein: What About Protein Powders?

First, let me start by saying that I can’t believe this the last post of the National Nutrition Month Challenge! March sure has flown by. I’d love to hear your feedback about the challenge, how it went for you, and if you would like to see more challenges in the future. This blog is it’s best when the content is relevant to you, so, as always, let me know what’s on your mind.

With that said, we are closing out this week about protein with some information on protein powders. From whey to soy to pea to hemp, there are a lot of options out there. Most people use them after a workout to boost muscle growth. Because protein is used in the body to build and repair, this makes sense. But is it really necessary? Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: Garlic-Lime Shrimp Skewers

Garlic-Lime Shrimp with a pineapple salsa

Putting something on a skewer instantly makes it seem fancier. Plus, it can trick you into eating less because the food takes up so much more room on the plate. If you don’t have skewers or it isn’t warm enough to grill, you can also cook the shrimp in a pan on the stove-top (that’s what I did). Shrimp are a great lean protein option and they take on other flavors quickly so no marinating is required. A simple toss will do. Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: Chipotle Black Bean Burgers with Avocado-Yogurt Sauce

Chipotle Black Bean Burgers with Avocado-Yogurt Sauce and baked fries on the side.

Ok y’all, this is possibly the best thing I’ve come up with to-date. The burgers are moist and flavorful and the avocado-yogurt sauce brightens it up and adds a creaminess without being too heavy. This is going to be a go-to dinner for me from now on and I hope it will be for you too! It’s not just something you make for the vegetarian in your life. You’ll be fighting them to get your hands on one. Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: The Vegetarian Way

It’s a common misconception that it’s hard for vegetarians to get the protein they need. The truth is, if you’re eating a variety of foods including nuts, seeds, dairy, eggs, legumes, and grains, this usually isn’t a problem. The major concern for vegetarians is ensuring they get all of the essential amino acids they need. You see, proteins are made up of amino acids. Some of these amino acids are non-essential, meaning we don’t need to consume them in the diet because the body can make them on its own, and others are essential because we must get them from outside sources. Animal products contain all of the essential amino acids. This is called a complete protein. Meat falls into this category, but so do dairy products and eggs, which most vegetarians eat.

So the next question is, how do you make a complete protein from non-animal sources? Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: Lemon-Herb Roasted Chicken

Roasting a whole chicken is a delicious way to get dinner on the table that is also economical. Plus, you can use leftovers to make new dishes like soup or, in my case, quesadillas. Don’t forget to save the carcass to make some homemade stock!

Lemon-Herb Roasted Chicken

serves 4-6

Ingredients

4 lb. organic chicken

1 lemon, quartered

6 sprigs each of fresh sage, thyme, and rosemary

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

Pepper to taste

Kitchen twine Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: Be a Picky Eater

The quality of the food you eat can make a huge difference in your health. This is especially true when it comes to animal products. The methods used to produce dairy products and meat are far from being natural processes and this trickles down to us when we ingest these foods. For example, conventional beef is raised in crowded feet lots where they are fed corn, rather than the grass they are designed to eat. This causes changes in the environment of their digestive tract which allows for the growth of potentially harmful microorganisms, such as E. coli, which would normally not be present. Continue reading

NNMC Picking Protein: You’re Getting Enough

Because protein is so important to our health, there seems to be a lot of concern with getting enough. Well, I’m here to tell you that, if you have enough food to eat and you’re getting the variety you should, this won’t be a problem. Now, I’m not saying that getting adequate protein is not an issue for some people. Lots of people around the world are struggling with this right now because of lack of access to food or a lack of resources to purchase food. It is a real problem that I do not want to minimize. But, for those of us who have an adequate diet, getting enough protein is usually not a concern.

So how much protein do we need? Continue reading