The advice to follow a high-protein diet has been given to everyone who has ever attempted to shed weight or gain muscle. Protein is, after all, the building block for muscle, and several medical studies—if not local fitness trainers—have emphasized its weight advantages.
Whether you're trying to lose weight by eating eggs, meat, and other sources of lean protein or you're trying to gain muscle mass by using protein supplements, according to a research paper, a high-protein diet puts you at greater risk of a heart attack.
Protein and the risk of heart attack are still a big mystery?
Here is what the scientists have to say:
According to research from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), high-protein diets increase the risk of plaque buildup in the arteries.
High-protein diets increase the risk of unstable plaque formation, which can lead to artery blockages, according to a study on mice. This is risky since it can trigger a heart attack and increase the risk of heart disease.
What harm might excessive protein intake cause?
Recently, an incident happened in Karnataka where a young man died from a heart attack after consuming low-quality protein powder, as per various media reports.
As a side effect, his heart and kidneys were badly damaged. His family spent 50 lakhs on his treatment, but he was still not saved due to his critical condition.
After the incident, the Karnataka government is planning to take strict action against the illegal distribution of protein powders and launch a special initiative to create better awareness among the general public.
We sought the advice of two dietitians, Mr. Bhuvan and Ms. Yukti, who work as consultant nutritionists at Healthify Me.
Our bodies require a variety of nutrients, and taking one nutrient in excess can lead to numerous complications. However, supplements should be used under the proper guidance of a dietitian or nutritionist.
Mr. Bhuvan, Dietitian and Nutritionist at Healthify me
The replacement shakes shouldn't entirely take the place of a balanced, healthy diet. This is due to the fact that it is challenging to obtain each vitamin from a single dietary source. Also, a body that doesn't get adequate nutrition may have issues with its metabolism. This might hinder the body's normal processes.
Ms. Yukti, Dietitian and Nutritionist at Healthify me
What should we do as a result? Not only are we discussing the issue here, but we are also providing you with a solution in the form of our dietitian-recommended, healthier homemade protein alternatives:
You can go ahead with some natural sources of proteins:
Nutritionist and Dietitian Gunjan Sooden recommends this easy way to include protein in every meal:
Paneer, curd, eggs, lean chicken, lean fish, lentils, protein salads, and milk are all sources of protein.
Beans and other legumes are excellent sources of both protein and fiber. Here are a few options you can always go ahead with:
18g of protein and 16g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of cooked lentils.
15 g of protein and 13g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of cooked chickpeas.
15g of protein and 15g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of cooked black beans.
16g of protein and 16g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of boiled split peas.
Some of the other good options are:
8g of protein and 5g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of cooked quinoa.
5g of protein and 4g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of standard cooked muesli.
6g of protein and 2g of fiber are contained in 1 cup of cooked millets.
Nuts and seeds also increases your dietary fiber and protein intake:
6g of protein and 4g of fiber are contained in 1 ounce of almonds.
1 ounce of cashews has 5g of protein and 1g of fiber.
1 tbsp of almond butter has 3g of protein and 2g of fiber.
Protein power will help you improve your diet!
Every meal should have at least one of the following: paneer, tofu, soy chunks, beans, pulses, legumes, curd, or milk.
Add the oats, millet, and quinoa together to make flour, which you can use for multiple items in your home.
Always start with the basics:
For vegetarians: Milk and curd can be consumed twice a day as a source of protein; paneer may occasionally be added, but make sure the dairy products that you are using are low-fat or toned.
For non-vegetarians: Milk and curd twice daily Paneer and non-vegetarian foods like eggs, poultry, and fish are occasionally allowed, but make sure they're in lean form.
The Bottom Line
Under adequate supervision, supplementation is not harmful. Although, it is recommended that younger children avoid taking manufactured protein and instead place more emphasis on natural sources.