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Eating for Weight Loss: The Power of Protein and Getting Full on Fibre

One of the early diet reviews that we undertake with clients is to ensure that they are eating both sufficient protein and fibre because it is much easier to control your overall calorific intake if you are first consuming the essential nutrients that you require for overall health. 

The Power of Protein

Protein is an indispensable part of our diet, essential for building and repairing tissues, producing enzymes and hormones, and supporting overall health.

Protein-rich foods promote feelings of fullness more effectively than fats or carbohydrates. This can help reduce overall calorie intake by curbing hunger and reducing the likelihood of overeating. Protein has a higher thermic effect compared to fats and carbs, meaning the body burns more calories digesting and metabolising protein. This can aid in weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight. During weight loss, it’s crucial to maintain muscle mass. Adequate protein intake ensures that the body burns fat rather than muscle for energy.

Protein and Strength Training

Strength training involves exercises that improve muscle strength and endurance. Protein plays a pivotal role in this process for several reasons:

  • Muscle repair and growth. During strength training, muscles undergo microscopic damage. Protein provides the necessary amino acids to repair and build these muscles stronger and larger.

  • Enhanced recovery. Adequate protein intake speeds up recovery post-exercise, reducing muscle soreness and allowing for more consistent and effective training sessions.

  • Performance. Higher protein intake supports better muscle performance, enabling individuals to lift heavier weights and perform more repetitions.

Recommended Daily Protein Intake

The amount of protein needed can vary based on age, gender, activity level, and dietary preferences. Here are general guidelines:

  • Women over 40: It's recommended to consume 1.0 to 1.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight daily. This means a 70 kg (154 lbs) woman should aim for 70-84 grams of protein per day.

  • Vegans: Approximately 1.2 to 2.0 grams per kilogram of body weight to account for the lower digestibility of plant-based proteins.

Incorporating adequate protein into your diet is crucial for supporting muscle health, enhancing satiety and aiding in weight management. By paying attention to your protein intake, you can optimise your health, improve your strength training results, and support a healthy weight. Remember, protein isn't just a nutrient; it's a powerful tool for a healthier, stronger you.

Getting Full on Fibre

One of the most significant benefits of fibre is its ability to promote a feeling of fullness, or satiation. High-fibre foods take longer to chew and digest, which helps control hunger and maintain energy levels. This prolonged digestion time means that you are less likely to overeat, making fibre a crucial component for those looking to manage their weight.

Foods high in fibre are often less energy-dense, meaning they provide fewer calories for the same volume of food. This helps in reducing overall calorie intake without feeling deprived. Additionally, fibre can slow the absorption of sugar, helping to maintain stable blood sugar levels and reducing cravings for unhealthy snacks.

Fibre is found naturally in plant-based foods. Here are some excellent sources:

  • Fruits and Vegetables: Apples, berries, carrots, and broccoli are rich in fibre.

  • Whole Grains: Foods like oats, quinoa, whole wheat bread, and brown rice are great choices.

  • Legumes: Beans, lentils, and chickpeas provide a significant fibre boost.

  • Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, chia seeds, and flaxseeds are fibre-dense snacks that also offer healthy fats.

For more support in eating for weight loss, strength training or confidence, join the Rider Performance Herd community.

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