Protein is a macronutrient necessary for the proper growth and function of the human body. There is considerable debate over the amount of protein a person needs to consume per day, the current recommended daily intake (RDI) for protein is 46 grams for women aged 19-70, and 56 grams for men aged 19-70. Any excess protein is turned into energy by the body, and it is controversial whether this excess protein causes a strain on the liver.
A deficiency in protein leads to muscle atrophy and impaired functioning of the human body in general.
High protein foods include meat, fish, cheese, tofu, beans, lentils, yogurt, eggs, nuts, and seeds.
1: Fish (Cod, Tuna, Salmon)
|Protein in 100g||3oz Fillet (85g)||Protein to Calorie Ratio|
|20g||17g||1g protein per 4.1 calories|
Other fish high in protein per fillet(3oz or 85g): Tuna (22g), Salmon (22g), Halibut (22g), Snapper (22g), Perch(21g), Flounder and Sole (21g), Cod (20g), Tilapia (17g).
2: Cottage Cheese
|Protein in 100g||1oz Slice (28g)||Protein to Calorie Ratio|
|32g||9g||1g protein per 4.4 calories|
Other cheese high in protein per ounce(28g): Low-fat Cottage Cheese (5g), Low-fat Swiss Cheese (8g), Low-fat Cheddar (6g), Parmesan (10g), Romano (9g). Cottage Cheese provide the most protein per calorie, full fat cheeses typically only provide 1g protein per 20 calories, and are less optimal sources of protein.
#3: Lean Turkey and Chicken (Turkey Breast)
|Protein in 100g||3oz serving (85g)||Protein to Calorie Ratio|
|29g||25g||1g protein per 4.6 calories|
More Chicken and Turkey: Chicken Leg – Drumsticks (60g) provides 16g protein. Chicken Thigh (37g) provides 9g protein. 3oz serving of Chicken Breast (85grams) provides 14g protein.
#4: Lean Beef and Veal (Lean)
|Protein in 100g||3oz Slice (85g)||Protein to Calorie Ratio|
|36g||31g||1g protein per 5.3 calories|
T-Bone Steak 3oz (28g) provides 19g of protein, 1 Piece of Beef Jerky (20g) provides 7g of protein.
#5: Beans (Mature Soy Beans)
|Protein in 100g||1 cup (172g)||Protein to Calorie Ratio|
|18g||31g||1g protein per 9.5 calories|
Other beans high in protein per cup cooked: Kidney Beans (17g), White Beans (17g), Lima Beans (15g), Fava Beans (14g), Black Beans (15g), Mung Beans (14g).
USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20-28.