Make sure your protein is coming from high quality complete protein sources and a wide variety of different plant sources if plant-based, to ensure you are consuming all amino acids, which are essential for maximising muscle maintenance.
Another bonus of protein is that out of the three macronutrients it is the most satiating. A higher protein intake is able to increase levels of our appetite suppressing hormones GLP-1, peptide YY and CCK, whilst reducing our hunger hormone ghrelin. This means that you will stay fuller for longer following a protein rich meal compared to a meal solely focussed on carbohydrates or fats. By being fuller for longer, this will reduce overall food intake ie. fat loss becomes easier!
If that wasn’t enough there is another bonus to protein! Protein has a much higher thermic effect (about 20-30%) compared to carbs (about 5-10%) and fats (0-3%), meaning that digesting and metabolizing protein requires more energy than carbs and fats so you are actually using more energy to break down protein, leading to a higher calorie output. If your intake is consistent across the day, you are naturally boosting metabolism and increasing the amount of calories burned across the day.
Principle 7 – Increase Water Intake
Being in a calorie deficit will mean you get hungry – this is simply because you are expending more than intaking. There are ways of reducing this such as bulking out meals with vegetables and also looking at your water intake.
Focus on drinking plenty of water consistently throughout the day to help control your hunger hormones. You’ll be surprised, sometimes you may actually just be thirsty rather than hungry.
As well as this, look at what other beverages you are drinking. Sugar sweetened beverages such as fizzy drinks, juices and cordial are high in sugar and calories and offer very little nutritional value. Alcohol is the same too. Simply swapping these drinks out and reducing alcohol intake can help to significantly reduce calorie intake, as well as sugar intake.