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Protein diet to lose weight without losing muscle mass

by Georgia Ede
Published: Last Updated on

What does the Protein Diet consist of?

The protein diet is basically a diet that prioritizes the consumption of protein in the diet, greatly reducing the consumption of other macronutrients (carbohydrates and fats).

It is a ➽  Hyperprotein Diet consisting of consuming foods RICH IN PROTEINS and limiting the consumption of carbohydrates, sugars and fats. It is used by people who want to increase their muscle mass and by people who just want to lose weight.

By increasing the percentage of proteins and reducing the consumption of carbohydrates, we normally lose weight since the hydrates that we eat and do not consume are stored in our body in the form of fat as an energy reserve and instead the protein intake provides the muscles the essential amino acids necessary to repair and regenerate after performing strength exercises and this allows the muscles to continue growing, thereby increasing muscle mass .

If this is your goal, we offer you two diets to increase muscle mass; on the one hand, the diet to gain muscle mass , and on the other hand, the diet to gain weight and fast muscle mass , which can be of help to you.

What foods to consume rich in protein?

Mainly meat : beef, chicken, turkey, pork (the lean parts of the meat that contain less fat ), fish , eggs (in this case the egg white which is where all the proteins are found, the yolk contains a lot of fat ), legumes and low-fat dairy .

These are basically the most protein foods, but we must also consume to a lesser extent: fruits, vegetables and cereals to provide a small amount of carbohydrates. The ideal would be to consume carbohydrates in the morning since it will provide us with energy that we can consume throughout the day and at lunch and dinner consume a higher percentage of protein.

In the case of fish, it is important that we consume white fish that gives us less fat than blue fish, although it is recommended that we consume at least two servings a week of blue fish, because it provides us with very healthy essential acids.

If you still don’t know the differences between white and blue fish , here we explain them in depth.

High protein foods that cannot be missing from your diet

Next we are going to analyze some foods that contain more proteins and that are the ones that should not be missing in your diet.

Approximate protein percentage of food per 100 grams:

  • Beef sirloin: 27%
  • Chicken breast: 25%
  • Turkey breast: 25%
  • Milk: 25%
  • Cottage cheese: 25%
  • Tuna fillet: 23%
  • Lentils: 22%
  • Pork loin: 22%
  • Manchego cheese: 22%
  • Peas: 22%
  • Sardines: 22%
  • Lubina: 22%
  • Beautiful: 22%
  • Beans: 21%
  • Scampi, prawns: 20%
  • Chickpeas: 20%
  • Broccoli: 19%
  • Brussels sprouts: 19%
  • Salmon: 19%
  • Cod: 19%
  • Almonds: 18%
  • Pistachios: 18%
  • Quinoa: 15%
  • Avena: 15%
  • Soy: 15%
  • Egg white: 15%

You may also be interested in the following post →  Complete list of foods rich in protein

Animal or vegetable proteins?

The ideal would be to combine both types of proteins , a healthy ratio would be 60% animal protein and 40% vegetable protein. Well, proteins of animal origin are of higher biological value.

What does this mean? The biological value is defined as the proportion of protein that is absorbed by our body is effective, in short, those of animal origin contain all the essential amino acids and have better quality, however those of animal origin have as a counterpart that they provide us with more saturated fats and cholesterol than vegetables.

Here is an article where you can find out about the best proteins of plant origin .

Weekly protein diet menu

Next we are going to present a 7-day menu, which can serve as a guide to start and get an idea of ​​what it would be like to carry out a protein diet:


Breakfast : Coffee or tea with semi-skimmed milk and a toast of bread with olive oil.

Lunch : French omelette with 1 tomato.

Lunch : Chicken Caesar salad with Parmesan cheese.

Snack : Carrot crudités + 4 cashews.

Dinner : Sea bass in salt with 2 egg whites to accompany.


Breakfast : Coffee with soy milk and a toast of bread with olive oil with fresh cheese.

Lunch : Watercress salad with tuna.

Food : Beef entrecote + 2 baked zucchini.

Snack : An orange + a handful of pistachios.

Dinner : Baked salmon with artichokes with 2 egg whites to accompany.


Breakfast : Coffee or tea with semi-skimmed milk and a toast of bread with olive oil.

Lunch : 2 egg whites with 2 strips of bacon.

Food : Beef sirloin + steamed beans.

Snack : An orange + 6 almonds.

Dinner : Grilled tuna and lamb’s lettuce salad.


Breakfast : Coffee with soy milk and a toast of bread with olive oil with fresh cheese.

Lunch : A French omelette with 1 tomato.

Food : Chicken fillet and about 10 or 12 Brussels sprouts.

Snack : An orange + 6 almonds.

Dinner : Grilled tuna and lamb’s lettuce salad.


Breakfast : Coffee or tea with semi-skimmed milk and a toast of bread with olive oil.

Lunch : 2 egg whites with 2 strips of bacon.

Food : Turkey fillet + 1 baked aubergine.

Snack : An orange + 6 cashews.

Dinner : Cod with tomato + beans.


Breakfast : Coffee or tea with semi-skimmed milk and a toast of bread with olive oil.

Lunch : A French omelette with fresh cheese

Lunch : Complete vegetable salad with vinaigrette + white fish fillet.

Snack : An orange + 6 cashews and two slices of cooked ham.

Dinner : Assorted fruits with oat flakes and yogurt.


Breakfast : Coffee or tea with semi-skimmed milk and a toast of bread with olive oil.

Lunch : 2 egg whites with 2 strips of bacon.

Food : Baked chicken with vegetables and quinoa + yogurt.

Snack : An orange + 6 almonds and a piece of fresh cheese.

Dinner : Baked blue fish + sauteed vegetables.

Is the protein diet effective to lose weight?

The protein diet is very effective to lose weight , since by reducing the intake of carbohydrates that are the usual source of energy, we are altering the metabolism and forcing our body to use the accumulated fat to transform it into energy.

In addition, if we follow a balanced diet rich in animal and vegetable proteins without excessively limiting the consumption of carbohydrates, it will become an ideal balanced diet. However, it is very difficult for a person to determine if the amount we are ingesting of proteins, carbohydrates, etc. .. is correct, therefore, we should always recommend doing this diet under medical supervision .

There are miracle diets and very strict protein diets that are not the most recommended for health, since they excessively restrict carbohydrates, eliminating them almost entirely; as is the case of the zero carbohydrate diet , of which we inform you in the link.

Currently there are many protein diets, we recommend taking a look at these:

Pros and cons of doing a protein diet

It is a diet with high satiating power : there is a debate about the reason for this feeling of satiety that some attribute to a stability of blood sugar; since if there are no glycemic imbalances, cravings or snacking are reduced. Others, however, attribute it to the fact that eating too much protein causes the brain to secrete less appetite hormones.

The proteins are essential for growth, development and support for the immune system. Likewise, it is important to bear in mind that the consumption of proteins will not allow us to lose muscle mass, but fat.

It can cause discomfort and difficulties in the digestive tract if an additional amount of fiber is not added to the high protein diet, since high protein products are usually low in fiber.

The main problem with protein diets is dehydration . Carbohydrates tend to retain water and by severely reducing their intake, we can become dehydrated, which is why we must drink water before, during and after exercise and preferably outside of meals.

We must keep track of calorie consumption because generally, they are products with a lot of caloric intake and we must try not to overdo it, just as we must monitor fat consumption and opt for lean meats.

This type of diet can raise cholesterol , as well as generate kidney problems derived from the work that the kidneys must do to cleanse themselves.

When it comes to losing weight, it is a very effective system , but although it is true the moment you change your habits towards a more balanced diet in which you eat more carbohydrates, the body will begin to reserve all these carbohydrates and as a consequence you will gain weight.

For this reason, these types of diets are questioned because they do produce rapid weight loss, but not gradual and sustainable over time. They are diets with a high rebound effect , that is, when you abandon them and change the eating patterns, you begin to regain the lost weight in a matter of a short time. This effect, known as the yo-yo effect, can be avoided with simple tricks, in the link we inform you of all the secrets. You can not lose this!

Sometimes, it is difficult to increase protein consumption in the diet, so you can help yourself with the shakes, below we offer you the best natural and homemade protein shakes , which will help you increase the protein consumption in the diet. And best of all, you can make them yourself, with natural ingredients.

The Protein Diet in phases, a solution to the rebound effect

There is a way of doing the high protein diet to avoid the rebound effect in which different phases are established to achieve effective weight loss.

The foundation of these phases is to clearly establish guidelines for restricting carbohydrates , and to establish guidelines for food reintroduction so that this does not lead to weight gain. So that we can understand it clearly, it is a calendar in which it is established when we can reintroduce food according to the achievements obtained with respect to weight loss.

Phases of the protein diet and dietary pattern

  • Phase 1 Weight loss:

In this phase, the aim is to achieve the weight loss that we consider necessary, that is, to reach our ideal weight. For this it will be necessary to restrict carbohydrates and consume only bread or cereals for breakfast.

During the course of this phase, we will gradually introduce a portion of healthy carbohydrates such as rice or whole wheat pasta from the second week.

We will maintain a limited consumption of carbohydrates to achieve rapid weight loss .

  • Phase 2: Consolidation:

Once we have reached our ideal weight , this phase will help us to gradually reintroduce carbohydrates and fats progressively to avoid the rebound effect. During this phase, we will gradually make the diet more balanced since we will normalize the consumption of carbohydrates.

To introduce carbohydrates we will do it progressively increasing each week by 5% more each week. We must always bear in mind that we must choose the healthiest carbohydrates with the lowest caloric load.

During the consolidation of the weight, we will play with a margin of 2 kilos, since the weight can be varied by different factors.

  • Phase 3 Maintenance:

We will begin this phase when we remain one month in the consolidation of the peso . During this phase, we will establish a maximum of three weekly servings of pasta or rice and we will establish a control of carbohydrates and fats, adapting them to our level of physical exercise and our daily caloric expenditure, making it as tight as possible to avoid being reserved in the form of fat.

This phase will help us to maintain our ideal weight, and progressively change towards a healthier and more balanced diet , since, as we have mentioned, excessive protein intake can have consequences on our body and without the risk of weight gain .

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