Some Yummy Protein Sources to Help You Feel Better Mentally and Reduce Cravings

Photo by Antoni Shkraba:

When I focus on protein, I tend to feel better mentally. It’s also a great way to help lose excess weight. But most importantly, it’s how I feel that I mostly focus on. My brain has more clarity and I tend to feel more satiated, less prone to snack or crave high carby junk foods that shoot up my blood sugar and insulin sky-high.

What are some easy protein sources?

  • Eggs – Eggs are fast and easy. You can eat them hard-boiled, soft-boiled, scrambled, fried, made into an omelette, dropped into a broth, made into an easy frittata with whatever leftovers you have (ex. spinach, ground beef, cheese), poached to eat for a delicious Eggs Benedict made on top of Canadian Bacon or just slices of avocado with Hollandaise Sauce
  • Nuts – Walnuts, almonds, macademia, pecans, pistachios, nut flours (mixed with eggs you can make low-carb keto-ish paleo breads or muffins)
  • Seeds – Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
  • Dairy – cottage cheese, cheese, full-fat Greek yogurt
  • Fish/Seafood – Salmon, sardines, tuna, anchovies, cod, sea bass, sable fish, shrimp, prawns, scallops, oysters, clams, squid
  • Chicken – we like to buy chicken thighs with skin-on and bake in a hot oven with salt and spices like garlic powder, paprika; drumsticks are delicious too. Also rotisserie chicken is an easy way to fix a meal such as chicken salad with mayo or you can, like my good friend, an elementary school teacher who will sometimes just eat an entire rotisserie chicken for lunch
  • Pork – bacon, ham, ground pork, pulled pork, pork tenderloin, pork chops, chorizo
  • Beef – ground beef is affordable and easy; we love adding Siete taco seasonings to make an easy burrito bowl with guac or fresh avocado slices, salsa; we also enjoy eating rib-eye and NY strips. And of course, brisket from Terry Black’s in Austin, walkable from our apartment
  • Tofu – we love making my dad’s favorite Chinese dish: Mapo Doufu
  • Beans – Black beans, chickpeas (great for making hummus!), kidney beans add to a salad
  • Protein powder (available: collagen, dairy, dairy-free/vegan, pea protein, vegetarian) – I add collagen into my coffee or smoothies with some MCT oil.
  • Bone broth – you can easily make with bones from chicken, beef, fish. Just add water and cook in a slow cooker, and a dash of apple cider vinegar to pull out the minerals from the bones. Great paired with one or two eggs beaten in a bowl and poured into a roiling broth. Add some sliced shallots, white pepper, salt and a dash of sesame oil, and you have yourself a healthy delicious Asian soup to eat for breakfast or dinner!

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