Protein at Every Meal – Including Snack time!President's Blog
Protein at Every Meal – Including Snack time!
As the president and CEO of Burnbrae Farms, I’m fortunate to have many dietitian colleagues who help me stay up-to-date with the latest nutrition research. And one important lesson I learned from dietitians is that getting enough protein in my meals and snacks is important for my health and longevity.
Protein is particularly important as we age, since muscle mass tends to decrease starting between 40-50 years of age. This phenomenon is called sarcopenia, and is part of the aging process. The bad news is that it gradually causes a loss of muscle quality and strength. The good news? It can be halted and reversed if we get enough protein in our diets, and pair that with physical activity to support muscle maintenance and growth.
The type of exercise that’s required is known as resistance exercise, and includes lifting free weights, kettle bells, medicine balls or using weight machines. Planks and squats are helpful, too.
Getting enough protein
As for protein, it’s vital to get enough each day to support your muscles. We can’t store protein in our bodies, which means we constantly need to replenish it by including protein-rich foods in daily meals and snacks.
We need about 60-100 grams of protein a day (the exact amount depends on your age, gender, activity levels, medical needs and other factors). Beyond how much protein we consume, what’s key is protein timing. Large amounts of protein at one sitting isn’t the best idea. Instead, it’s vital to spread protein intake throughout the day – even when we snack. We need to deliver protein to muscles throughout the day to get maximal growth. Here’s how you can spread out protein to get enough throughout the day:
• Breakfast: 25-30 g protein
• Lunch: 25-30 g protein
• Dinner: 25-30 g protein
• Snack: 10 g protein (once or twice a day)
Unfortunately, most people get less protein at breakfast (think toast and coffee), and too much protein at dinner (such as an 8 oz. steak). It’s better to spread it out!
Here at Burnbrae Farms, we create solutions to help you get protein at every meal – and enjoy it all! A serving of 2 eggs as part of breakfast, lunch or dinner, provides 12 g of high-quality protein with all of the essential amino acids.
We’re also big fans of snacking, and like to include about 10 grams of protein in our nourishing snacks. Here are some of our favourite options, which have 9-12 grams of protein per serving:
• Burnbrae Farms’ new Egg Bites! Mini Crustless Quiches make eating protein at snack time a breeze. These microwaveable bite-size crustless quiches have (depending on which flavour you select) 9-10 g protein and 130-140 calories per serving (3 EGG Bites!). They are ready in just 90 seconds and available in two delicious flavours:
- Pizza Deluxe with mozzarella & cheddar cheese, pepperoni, green & red peppers, onions and tomatoes
- Tex Mex with Mexican-style beef, potatoes, cheddar & mozzarella, roasted corn and green peppers.
• Trail mix with 2-3 ounces of trail mix with nuts, seeds, roasted chickpeas and dried fruit.
• Burnbrae Farms’ EGGS2go! – perfectly cooked, hard boiled eggs that are peeled and ready-to-eat. Two eggs have 130 calories and pack 12 g of protein. Available in Plan, Dill, and Salt & Pepper. Try them in these Cobb Salad Skewers featuring EGGS2go !
• A ½ cup of Greek yogurt and some fresh fruit topped with a sprinkle of granola.
• 100 grams of steamed edamame (green soybeans) with a sprinkle of salt and some chili flakes (if you like heat).
• 2 tbsp peanut butter spread on an apple or banana.
• A slice of cheddar or Swiss cheese on toast with sliced tomato.
• If you prefer a drinkable snack, have a milk-based latte! Even try these smoothies: the Banana Berry Smoothie or Green Goddess Smoothie made with a boost of natural protein with Naturegg Simply Egg Whites .
The bottom line? Remember protein at your meals and snacks – your muscles will thank you for it.
President and CEO, Burnbrae Farms
How Eggs Fit Into Canada’s Food Guide
Canada’s Food Guide offers tips and advice to help Canadians eat well. One component of the guide is the Food Guide Snapshot, a plate model that helps with meal planning. Have you seen it? It wisely proportions a plate into four quadrants, so it’s an easy visual for creating a balanced meal. You simply fill two quadrants with vegetables and fruit, one quadrant with whole grains, and the final quadrant with a source of protein such as eggs, beef, pork, poultry, dairy, tofu, or beans.
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My great-grandfather, Joseph Hudson, started farming in Lyn, Ontario in 1891. One of the great things about being a fourth generation farmer (whose family has been in the egg business for more than 70 years) is the vast amount of knowledge about eggs that you can collect over the years. Today I’m going to share five of my favourite facts with you!