The NutriKey blog is fairly new, but if you’ve been with us or our sister company Nutritional Weight & Wellness for awhile, you know that we talk about balancing your real food meals with the big three: protein, fat, carbohydrates (of the veggie and fruit variety!). Today, in honor of introducing our newest paleo protein (and our current product of the month!), we’d like to highlight protein (of the big three!).
Why is protein important?
Quality protein is essential for a lot of our bodily functions: metabolism, energy, feel-good-moods, neurotransmitter production, tissue and muscle growth, just to name a few. Here’s a list of why getting enough protein in your daily diet is key:
How much protein is ideal?
For women, we recommend 3-4 ounces of protein at each meal and 1-2 ounces at snacks. For men, we recommend 5-6 ounces of protein at each meal and 2-3 ounces at snacks. One great way to eyeball portion sizes for meals is to use the palm of your hand as a guide. Even better to use a food scale for accuracy!
That might seem like a lot, especially if you’re used to getting just a smattering of chicken on your salad or in your pasta meat sauce. The good news is there are a variety of animal proteins to choose from: chicken, fish, turkey, lamb, grass-fed beef, eggs, pork, protein powder. These animal proteins can be consumed in a variety of ways: nitrate free meat sticks, ground meat, steaks, scrambles or quiches, bacon (yes you can have bacon!), roasts in your slow cooker, and a plethora of one pot dishes.
Why we like protein shakes?
Like most people, our days get busy with work, family, and other commitments. So sometimes it’s nice to rely on a quick and easy protein shake to balance blood sugar and have the energy to get through the day. A balanced protein shake gets all of the big three (protein, fat, carbs!) in all at once in a delish combination that even kids will enjoy. You can drink one just about anywhere (even put it in a coffee mug during those Zoom meetings), they’re easy to make, they easily last in the fridge for a few days if you make a big batch, and you can switch up the flavors to keep it interesting!
So what’s the buzz with paleo protein?
No, you don’t have to follow a “paleo” specific diet to enjoy this yummy dairy-alternative to protein powder. NutriKey Paleo Protein is a great-tasting beef protein powder rich in essential amino acids and contains absolutely no lactose/dairy and minimal fat. Because beef protein contains all nine of the essential amino acids, it serves a valuable role in supporting body composition, fitness, and overall bodily function, like we mentioned above.
Now don’t let the sound of “beef protein powder” fool you! NutriKey Paleo Protein comes in two bold flavors of vanilla and chocolate. Even your toughest critics (little kids!) will like it. Not only does it taste like vanilla (with a hint of butterscotch!) or chocolate, but it also dissolves easily in a glass of water or coconut milk. We can’t stand protein powder that globs up into a ball and doesn’t mix well!
Often those with a dairy sensitivity can’t tolerate a whey protein, and paleo is a great alternative that won’t upset stomachs, but give the flexibility of having a serving of protein on the go in a smoothie or baking with it in a recipe.
Speaking of smoothies and recipes, here are a few ways to use your new tub of paleo protein (orwhey protein – also 15% off this month – if you prefer!):
We frequently see clients who have children who aren’t feeling well due to an unknown dairy sensitivity. They’re excited to start feeling better, but once they realize that means no more chocolate milk we see some sad faces. That is until they realize there’s a way to make it happen! This recipe is sure to win over even the biggest chocolate milk fans.
A glass of this sugar-free “milk” would make a great complement to breakfast, especially if your little one (or you) won’t touch other protein sources. Add one hard-boiled egg, a large sliced apple or a slice of 100% whole rye toast with 2 teaspoons of peanut butter or almond butter and you’ve got a balanced meal.
We've found that most people with a dairy intolerance aren't bothered by heavy cream. The higher the fat content the lower the lactose. If heavy cream doesn’t work for your household, try 2 tablespoons of full fat coconut cream instead to get that smooth texture.
Banana Muffin Recipe
Sometimes you just need a little baked good for breakfast, for an after-school snack, or to share with coworkers in the office. These gluten free banana muffins are packed with protein and made without any refined sugars. It’s a great way to use up those spotted bananas on the counter and a fun way to sneak in some protein.
Like to print this recipe to keep handy in the kitchen? Get the Banana Muffin Recipe here.
Protein Strawberry Shake Recipe
Keeping it classic with this recipe recommendation because sometimes simple is where it’s at! Throw all of these no-fuss ingredients into the blender, sip it, and you’re on your way to the next part of your day. The beauty of this protein shake recipe is you can switch out the fruit for whatever you have on hand or for the variety that your tastebuds are craving. This single serving is considered a balanced meal and can be made dairy free:
To make this dairy free, substitute ¼ c. canned coconut milk and ½ c. water for yogurt. To make your week a little more stress-free, double or triple the recipe and store in jars in the fridge for later.
If you’re looking for more variety to shake up your protein shake, check out this Guide To A Perfect Smoothie article for a list of delish smoothie concoctions.
To summarize, protein is one of the important macronutrients that’s needed for a variety of bodily functions, including energy, metabolism, healthy tissues, muscle growth, and good moods. As a company passionate about real food education and therapeutic grade products, we recommend a quality protein powder to supplement your real food animal protein to make sure you’re getting all of your protein needs met. Benefits of our NutriKey Paleo Protein are:
And it’s 15% off this month, so give it a try and let us know what you think!