Protein: How to “Beef Up” Your Diet in Four Bad Ways Want to Make Sure You Get Enough Protein to Keep Your Muscle Mass Up? Be careful when selecting your sources. Our dietitians believe that the following four common sources of protein will cause you more harm than good:

1. Meats that have been processed Hot dogs, sausage, and other processed meats might be your guilty pleasure. However, they are expensive for your health.

According to Emily Bostin, MS, RDN, LD, “hot dogs have very little nutrition for the amount of calories you’re consuming, and contain only a small amount of poor-quality protein.” She mentions that they contain mechanically separated meat and are loaded with preservatives.

“Hot dogs and other processed meats like salami, pepperoni, and sausage generally contain less protein than a piece of fresh lean meat or fish,” adds Julia Zumpano, RD, LD.

2. Red meats fed on grains Consuming a lot of red meat, like beef, pork, and lamb, can be bad for your health.

According to Kristin Kirkpatrick, MS, RD, LD, “Grain-fed red meat is my least favorite source of protein due to its high saturated fat content and impact on the environment.”

Red meat-heavy diets are linked to a higher risk of heart attack and stroke, according to research. Red meat has also been classified as a probable carcinogen by the World Health Organization due to their connection to a number of cancers.

3. Protein powder of low quality: Why not add protein powder to your morning smoothie? Read the ingredients carefully first. According to Brigid Titgemeier, MS, RDN, LD, “All protein powders are not created equal.”

Whey, casein, beef, collagen, hemp, pea, or rice are all options for the protein base.

However, “some protein powders also contain a lot of added sugar, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, and other things,” She asserts, Additionally, protein powders may contain fillers, binders, colors, flavorings, and preservatives due to the fact that they are regulated as supplements rather than foods.

She suggests selecting a product of high quality that adheres to your dietary guidelines. Vegetarians will want protein that comes from plants. Whey should be avoided if you have a dairy allergy or intolerance.

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