Protein Packed Weight-Loss Salad
By Sheree Trask
When it comes to protein, you likely know it’s important, but do you know why? Aside from enjoying the taste of a quality piece of meat (or veggie source), chances are you eat protein because you were told you should, which for the record, is great advice! But when you bite into that piece of chicken, or opt for eggs instead of a bagel at breakfast, do you have any idea of how powerful that protein you’re consuming is to your whole entire beautiful body?
Protein is POWERFUL and here are some reasons why.
- It is a component of every cell in your body. In fact, hair and nails are mostly made of protein.
- Your body uses it to build and repair tissue.
- You need it to make enzymes, hormones and other body chemicals.
- It is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin and blood.
- Your ability to see, think, hear and move requires your nerve cells to send messages back and forth to each other and to other specialized kinds of cells, such as muscle cells. Sending these messages requires chemicals called neurotransmitters. And you guessed it, making neurotransmitters requires proteins.
Where To Get It
Protein comes from a variety of sources, including meat, milk, fish, soy and eggs, as well as plant sources such as beans, legumes, quinoa, some grains and nut butters. When proteins are digested, they leave behind amino acids, which the human body needs to break down food. Essential amino acids cannot be made by the body so we must get them from the food we eat. Animal protein is NOT the only way to get adequate protein in your diet. This is a huge misconception in our society. Quinoa, which is considered a complete protein because it includes all essential amino acids, is a fabulously delicious and nutritious source of protein. It’s often called a grain, however, it’s actually a seed. And it’s gluten-free too!
Quinoa: A Complete Protein
What you fuel your with is extremely important, but most people these days are busy and having healthy options on the go can be a bit confusing. Forget the fuss of hours in the kitchen prepping and cooking each night, convenience and quality are key for success in my home and I’m guessing they’re important in your home too. Below you will find one of my favorite recipes using the wonderfully nutritious seed (and complete protein source): QUINOA! Quick tip: Make a large batch of quinoa on Sundays and store it in the fridge to use throughout the week. Cooking it plain allows for more variety. You can add this to whatever you want to change up your meals, while ensuring you are getting a good amount of protein from a truly valuable source. This saves time (and sanity), which I am all for!
This is a light dish, which can easily be dressed up with different spices and veggies so don’t be afraid to experiment!
Quinoa Salad, Greens & Salmon
- ½ cup quinoa, uncooked
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- 2 Tbsp chopped Mint (fresh is best for more vibrant flavor)
- 2 Tbsp chopped basil (fresh is best for more vibrant flavor)
- ¼ cup toasted almond slivers (I buy raw and toast on the stove or in the oven until golden)
- 1 cup veggies of choice lightly steamed & cooled (I like green beans, red bell pepper and asparagus)
- 2 5-oz salmon filets, baked or grilled with coconut oil, lemon, salt & pepper
- Unlimited amount of your favorite greens (spinach, romaine, kale)
- Cook quinoa as directed.
- Meanwhile, lightly steam veggies until they are crisp tender, about 3 minutes.
- Once quinoa is cooked, add all ingredients (except the salmon and greens) and toss together.
- Pile your favorite greens on a plate, add a scoop of the quinoa salad and top with your salmon filet.
- This can be served warm or cold, both equally as delicious.
Certified Holistic Health and Lifestyle Coach; Writer and Editorial Director
It was through her own personal health journey with misdiagnosis and multiple autoimmune diseases that she found her purpose, which is to help educate, empower and encourage others to live a happy, healthy and fulfilling life. Sheree uses a whole-body approach to healing, focusing on food as medicine, positive mindset, daily movement, stress management, optimal sleep and spirituality. She specializes in a holistic approach to healing autoimmune diseases, with a focus on gut health.
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