Prioritize Protein To Optimize Hormones (Amongst Other Critical Things)
This is the 5th segment of my 8-part series focused on how our metabolism changes in midlife. This series is “a must read” if you are a woman in your late 30s or beyond and you’re realizing there are some changes happening in your body, mind, and emotions that have you second guessing whether everything is in fact “okay”. Take the next few minutes for yourself by reading this issue and grabbing my Top 10 Tips To Jumpstart Your Sluggish Metabolism.
In the last issue I pulled back the purple metabolic curtain to show you why you can eat air and exercise 27 hours a day*….and still not lose a stinkin’ inch from your waist. Or anywhere else. (*May be a wee bit of an exaggeration.)
I told you I wouldn’t deliver this ‘less than stellar’ news without bringing along some good news.
And I kept my word. (As I always do.)
Whether you are an (F) or an (E) camper, your “fix” remains the same. And it has better results than any pill Big Pharma could ever even dream of patenting. (Read the 4th part of the series HERE.)
Your one and only true “fix” is food.
What (and when) you eat is the be-all and end-all when it comes to insulin. Anything that increases insulin will make you store more than burn. Anything that decreases insulin will make your body burn more than it stores.
You can literally transform your body, mind and life with your fork & knife. Any fork & knife will do.
Step #4: Prioritize Protein
You are built out of protein, and it is critical you get enough in your diet and that your body is set up to recycle old proteins and make new ones. Think Goldilocks. You don’t want too little, and too much is just not necessary. Not to mention, a waste of food money to boot.
Protein is critical to life. We must get the lion’s share of our requirement from the foods we eat. There are so many varied sources from which we can derive these life-giving amino acids, and that’s great news! You can use any kind of protein to meet your needs, though some are better than others when it comes to accompanying carb content. Aim for a variety of sources to ensure you ingest a full profile of amino acids.
Protein is critical for muscle formation. In a sense, proteins are bricks in the construction of your body. Proteins are broken down into amino acids then utilized for tissue repair and maintenance, energy, hormones, enzymes, transportation and storage of molecules along with the creation of antibodies. You can see why experts recommend you get an adequate amount.
When planning your meals, your number one priority is to eat enough protein to maintain and rebuild your lean body mass along with all those other valuable processes mentioned above. Each body is a little different.
Exercise in a fasted state to stack the deck in your favor of protein assimilation.
When choosing animal protein sources, look to the way the animal was raised. What was it fed? In what kind of environment did it live? Was there freedom for movement?
Since we are eating the flesh (and the fat) of that animal or the egg from that animal, what it ate and how it lived affects us directly. Eat the highest quality protein (and fats) you can afford. As discussed a couple issues back, in “The Number One Reason Midlife Women Seek My Help And Why It Bums Me Out“, body fat is hormonally active in all mammals. Just as in humans, an animal’s body will store toxins in its body fat. Nature walls off the toxins in fat to protect our vital organs. The design is beyond intelligent like that.
I recommend local, pasture-raised meat and eggs when available. If not available, aim for items that state organic, pasture-raised and no antibiotics used.
Buy the highest quality meat/fowl/eggs you can afford and find where you live. You can look into optimizing your choices in time. Some locations have an abundance of farm-available meats/fowl/eggs, while others live in a food desert.
Over time, you’ll save money eating how I recommend. You can reallocate funds to improve the quality of your food.
There is a criminal amount of deception when it comes to marketing foods, so do a little digging into the company. Some companies have better reputations than others. HINT: free-range is not all that free, nor is cage-free when it comes to chickens. If you’ve not seen Food, Inc., I highly recommend watching it. Eye-opening to say the least!
The chart below lays out my hierarchy for protein choices in order from most ideal at the top to least at the bottom.
Get up to speed on the conversation by reading the past few issues of this 8-part blog series and join my weekly email list to be sure you receive word when the weekly issue goes “to print”.
In the next issue we’ll cover more of my proven 12-Step Strategy For A Body & Brain That Just Won’t Quit.