Research Supports Consuming Protein Throughout the DayTue, 03 Jun 2014 15:46:26 CDT
A new study published in the Journal of Nutrition demonstrates that evenly distributing protein across three meals (see sample meal plan below) - or eating approximately 30 grams of protein at breakfast, lunch and dinner (instead of consuming most of the daily protein needs at one meal) improves daily muscle maintenance, growth and repair rates in healthy adults by 25 percent.1
The study involved healthy adults who followed diets with two different distributions of protein throughout the day: one that was evenly distributed containing 30 grams of protein per meal, and the other with an uneven protein distribution of 65 grams at dinner, 15 grams at lunch and 10 grams at breakfast, like a typical American diet. Both patterns included 90 total grams of protein each day, which is consistent with current dietary guidance for healthy adults and average intakes in the U.S.
Lean beef was the primary source of protein for each menu. This research builds on the growing body of evidence supporting the role of high-quality protein, like beef, in healthy living, including muscle growth and development. Visit BeefNutrition.org for recipes and other ideas to help boost protein intake throughout the day.
Eat like the study participants by aiming for 30 grams of protein at each meal with this sample daily food plan*:
Omelet made with 2-3 eggs, 1 cup of fresh spinach and 1 oz feta cheese, served with 2 slices of whole-wheat toast and 8 oz of low-fat milk; or
Breakfast burrito made with 93% or leaner Ground Beef (2 oz), 1 egg, ½ cup tomatoes and broccoli, ½ oz reduced-fat shredded Cheddar cheese, 1 medium whole grain tortilla
Sandwich made with Roast Beef (3 oz), 1-oz slice of Swiss cheese, 1/2 fresh tomato, 2 slices of whole grain bread; or
Steak stir-fry made with Top Sirloin (3 oz) and 1/2 cup of vegetables of choice, served with 1/3 cup cooked quinoa
Strip Steak (3 oz) served with 1/2 cup of brown rice and 1 cup vegetables of choice; or
Top Round Steak (3 oz), served with 1/3 cup guacamole, 2 small corn tortillas, 1/2 cup tomato salsa
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