Protein

Before I could even get the preliminaries out of the way, I was hearing loudly and frantically that my client needed to eat more protein. The Guys are usually softer and quieter in their approach but when they’ve been trying to get your attention, you get ‘punch in the gut’ loud and blunt.  So for this sweet lady, all I could do was stammer, “Protein! You’ve got to eat more protein NOW. You’re body is cannibalizing itself. It’s starving!! You’ve got to get on consuming more protein NOW, NOW, NOW!!!”

That’s not the first time I’ve heard a client needs to eat more protein. I’ve heard it for both men and women of all ages. Again, when there is a reoccurring theme to what I’m hearing, it usually means more people are experiencing the same issue and will benefit from educating themselves about it.

Let’s talk about what protein does for our beautiful bodies. When we eat a protein source, our body breaks it down and then uses it to create new protein that is used to grow, maintain and repair our cells. OUR CELLS…Hello…HUGE!! According to one website http://www.helpwithcooking.com/nutrition-information/protein-guide.html, protein is vital for practically every process that occurs within our body.  Think: metabolism, digestion and the transportation of nutrients and oxygen in the blood.

Protein is also necessary in order to produce antibodies.  Antibodies fight against infection and illness. Protein is also the main nutrient that keeps our hair shiny and healthy, our nails strong, our skin fresh and glowing and our bones strong and healthy. Little old unassuming protein. Who knew??

So what happens if we don’t get enough protein? You mean OTHER than our body literally eating itself to stay alive? Well, if it’s the precursor to antibodies, then it stands to reason we’ll be ill more often. How about being tired and having skin issues (rashes, change in pigment, hair loss, etc.)? Yep. Definitely.  Our hair and nails will become brittle and as was the case for me, my hair broke off in sections. This was when I was nursing our daughter and thought I WAS consuming enough protein. My body said otherwise. I knew better, dang it. I totally knew better!

As a side note, I also know and love a certain ‘all I will eat is packaged and highly processed food from a box’ young teen whose hair has fallen out in a two inch diameter spot and is not regrowing. I knew long before this blog was even a twinkle in my eye that his body was suffering from a diet that was uber deficient in daily protein.

Of all the information the Ascended Ones/Guardian Angels could tell me, of ALL the information they want you to know, they often start out by saying my client needs more protein. Is it any wonder? Protein is so vital to, well, our life!

A question I’m often asked is, “Well, how much protein do I need?”  I shrug my shoulders and say, “I dunno… I’m just the messenger.” So for this blog, I decided to make it easy for you to see how much protein you need if you are an average person. I hope it goes without saying that if you are athletic (meaning lifting weights, doing yoga, training for a marathon, etc.), over weight/under weight, bodybuilding, pregnant or nursing, you’ll need to look into amping up your protein consumption.

Here’s a protein chart from the CDC: (http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/protein.html).

Recommended Dietary Allowance for Protein

  Grams of protein
needed each day

Children ages 1 – 3

13

Children ages 4 – 8

19

Children ages 9 – 13

34

Girls ages 14 – 18

46

Boys ages 14 – 18

52

Women ages 19 – 70+

46

Men ages 19 – 70+

56

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s briefly talk about protein sources and how easy it really is to get your daily allowance.

1 cup milk = 8 grams

1 large egg = 6 grams

1 cup yogurt = 8 to 12 grams

1 cup cooked beans (black, pinto, lentil, etc.) = 14 to 20 grams

1 chicken breast (3.5 oz) = 30 grams

1 hamburger pattie (4 oz) = 28 grams

1 cup tofu = 36 grams

1 cup nuts (various) = 32 grams

This is just a snapshot of what’s out there. Pasta, for instance, is often fortified with protein. Some fruits and veggies have trace amounts of protein, too. Don’t forget about the great protein drinks/powders out there, either. I find them to be an easy way to get more protein into my body. If you’d like to check out more protein sources, here’s the website I used: http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/whattoeat/a/highproteinfood

Can you get too much protein? Why, yes you can, Virginia! Good question! Our body doesn’t have the ability to store protein, so any excess will be converted into glucose or stored as fat. Too much protein consumption can actually lead to osteoporosis. And if you’re eating too much meat protein, you run the risk of gout, high-cholesterol, heart disease and stroke.   Now, what constitutes as too much protein? That you’ll need to figure out for yourself (or consult with a physician, nutritional consultant, etc.).

As I’ve said before, I know just enough about this stuff to be mildly dangerous. I don’t profess to have all the answers. I mean, I’m a Holistic Healer, not a Dietary Aide. I consider this blog as something to, uhhhh, grow on. Literally.

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3’s Meat(less) Balls – A Vegetarian Recipe

As promised in my ‘Vegetarian’ blog, here’s one of our FAVORITE vegetarian recipes. You’d be hard pressed to tell there isn’t meat in these filling little beauties. Not even kidding. 

These cooked balls freeze well and make a quick, easy meal. So go ahead and make a double batch while you’re at it.  There may not be many leftovers, but if there is, try a meat(less) ball sandwich on a sour dough hoagie. YUM!!

If you’d like to try some protein rich pasta, we like Ronzoni – Garden Delight or Barilla Plus. Each has about 7 to 10 grams of protein, per serving.   

3's Meat(less) Balls

Adapted from: www.ohsheglows.com

400 degree oven // 20 minutes total – Approximately 16 balls 

MEAT(LESS) BALLS:

  • 4 eggs; slightly beaten
  • 1 c mozzarella shredded cheese
  • 1 c sharp cheddar shredded cheese
  • ¾ c walnuts; ground to a fine texture
  • 1 c rolled oats (Quaker Oatmeal) – do NOT use the ‘quick’ oats
  • 2 cloves garlic; minced
  • Approx 2 T TOTAL of Thyme, Oregano, Basil, Marjoram Leaves (or Italian Seasoning)  (to taste)
  • Approx 1 T of Garlic Powder (to taste)
  • Black Pepper (to taste)
  • Salt (to taste) 

Mix all of the above ingredients together using a power mixer. Mix well.  Place in fridge for a MINIMUM of 30 minutes. Do not refridgerate less than 30 minutes. 

Preheat oven to 400. Spray a 9 x 13 metal baking dish with cooking spray (Pam).  Remove the mixture from the fridge and roll into small balls (1 ¼ inch or so).   Place them in the sprayed baking dish and bake, uncovered, for approximately 10 to 12 minutes. 

Remove from oven, roll the balls over and bake for another 10 to 12 minutes. The meatless balls should brown nicely. NOTE: Flattening of the meatless balls is normal. 

SAUCE: 

  • 1 jar of Classico Marinara sauce (or your preference)
  • 1 small can of petite Italian diced tomatoes

Mix together in a saucepan; warm through.  You can either place the cooked meatless balls in the sauce and simmer until ready to eat (this helps keep them moist) OR serve them on top of spaghetti/spaghetti sauce.

Uncooked meatless balls