The Protein-Fat Powerhouse

Elise Deming, MS, RDN, LDN

Three macronutrients rule the nutrition world; proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. All are essential for good health and contribute equally to a health-promoting diet. That said, it is possible to optimize these macronutrients to get the most of their nutrient dense properties, specifically fat and protein. When paired properly, the correct combination of fats and proteins can offer the body ample nutritional benefits.

The Digestion Process

Do you ever experience hunger shortly after a bowl of cereal or a piece of toast? This is because these are meals comprised mostly of carbohydrates. In the digestion process, carbohydrates are the first to be broken down and absorbed by the body. Protein is the next nutrient to be digested with the most help from pancreatic enzymes, the stomach, and the small intestine. The last to be digested is fat. Not only is this nutrient the slowest to break down, but it requires more energy to be broken down. The digestion of fat and protein elicits a slower digestion period which can promote numerous health benefits.

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Benefits

  1. Satiety - Evidence suggests protein consumption promotes fullness and keeps individuals fuller longer. Fat also has this exact same effect on the body. Therefore, when paired together, the two nutrients promote a slow digestion with lasting fullness. In many individuals, this eliminates the need for snacking, grazing, and overeating at mealtime.
  2. Weight Management - It is common for people struggling with weight management to
    snack throughout the day to quench their hunger. Research conflicts regarding the
    beneficial effects of snacking. However, some studies suggest snacking or grazing can
    contribute to excessive calorie intake. Additionally, some research indicates that
    snacking throughout the day may increase a person’s likelihood to become obese.
    Meals constituting of both protein and fat can help eliminate the need for snacking and
    help maintain fullness.
  3. Nutrient Absorption - Fat and protein in a meal slows digestion. This slowed rate is
    desirable as it allows the body to feel fuller and absorb adequate nutrients. If a meal is
    eliminated too quickly from the body, as experienced in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS),
    all the available nutrients may not be completely absorbed. A slower digestion helps
    ensure all necessary nutrients are absorbed by the body.

Sources of Protein + Fat

As with any nutrient, beneficial and not-so-beneficial sources of proteins and fats exist. Excellent sources of protein that should be included in most meals include:
-Chicken
-Turkey
-Eggs
-Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna
-Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios and macadamia
-Tofu
-Beans such as black beans, garbanzos, edamame and lentils

Excellent sources of fat that should be included in most meals include:

-Olive Oil
-Flaxseed Oil
-Soybean Oil
-Avocados
-Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines, and mackeral
-Seeds such as flax, hemp and chia

The addition of the above healthy fats and proteins into a diet also incorporates a bountiful addition of other beneficial nutrients.

How much do you need?

For most adults it is recommended to eat 5 to 6 ounces of protein a day or 15 to 25% of their daily calories. For a 2,000 calorie diet, this breaks down to roughly 70 to 120 grams of protein per day. It is recommended to consume 20 to 35% of your calories from fat. For a 2,000 calorie diet this breaks down to 44 to 78 grams of fat.

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Simply Good Jars meet the need

Most Simply Good Jars contain at least 14 grams of protein and 15 grams of healthy fats to help you meet your macronutrient requirements. These nutrients come from fresh, whole foods. When paired together, the fat and protein in Simply Good Jars are designed to promote lasting fullness and energy. Some jars boasting the excellent nutritional content include:

Salads:

-Carolina Tofu
-Smoked Salmon
-Spicy Tofu
-Spanish Tuna

Breakfast/Snacks:

-Apple Jawn
-Pear Jawn
-Greek Oats

Fat and protein are two nutritional powerhouses. When eaten in a healthy manner they can promote energy, fullness, and help manage weight. The right combination of these nutrients through whole, fresh foods that are found in Simply Good Jars can help achieve desirable health goals.