Protein Powerhouses


Protein is one of the three building blocks of good nutrition. It’s essential for building tissue, cells and muscle, as well as making hormones and anti-bodies.

Most people need around 0.8-1g of protein per 1kg of body weight per day. People who exercise a lot could need more. For example, if you weigh 55kg, you need 44-55 grams of protein a day.

However, high protein foods are often also high calorie foods. As I don’t each much meat or drink cow’s milk, I often don’t reach my protein quota. I do eat plenty of healthy fats and carbohydrates so I don’t have problems reaching my calorie quota. I need to eat protein powerhouses to have the right balance of macro-nutrients. That means I need foods with a high protein but low calorie content. I looked at both the best protein sources and food I liked. This is what I found.

Food Protein/100g Calories/100g Protein/100kcal
Shrimp 24 99 24
Tuna (canned) 26 116 22
Tilapia 26 129 20
Octopus 30 164 18
Turkey breast 29 189 15
Chicken breast 30 197 15
Anchovies (canned) 29 210 14
Spinach 2.9 23 13
Tofu 8 72 11
Sirloin steak 27 244 11
Salmon 20 208 10
Eggs 13 155 8
Broccoli 2.8 34 8
Brussels sprouts 3.4 43 8
Lentils (boiled) 9 116 8
Buckwheat noodles (cooked) 5 99 5
Oats 17 389 4
Peanut butter 25 588 4
Almonds 21 576 4
Quinoa 4 120 3

I was very pleased to see that octopus (or my beloved pulpo) came very high in the list. I was surprised to see how high spinach ranked. Time to add more of that to my diet! And this list makes it clear that if I do have meat, I should go for turkey or chicken breast to get the biggest protein bang for my calorie buck.

Which one of these foods are your go-to-source for protein? Any surprises?


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