How You Can Maintain a Healthy Weight

You cannot live a full life if you think about weight constantly, or if weight issues have become the bane of your existence. I’ve spent my career and much of my own energy taking care of weight issues. Don’t let my current “normal-sized” physique fool you: I’ve struggled with my own weight problems in the past and this has given me an intimate knowledge of how such concerns affect people’s health, life, longevity, and self-esteem. Granted, I’ve never been morbidly obese nor needed bariatric surgery, but I know what it’s like to struggle with weight and let it take control of everything.

What I didn’t learn from my own weight issues I’ve discovered through my patients. As with so many of my patients, if you can come to live a full life and be happy with the weight your body achieves after taking my techniques to heart, then I will have considered my mission complete.

Have your past dieting efforts been a series of attempts to white-knuckle it through every experience, whether it’s fighting the buffet table at a party or avoiding taboo foods at a baseball game? Has it always been about what you cannot put into your body to gain control? If so, then you know that you’re very good for a period of time, then kind of good. Then you begin to slack off, and eventually enough slacking off happens for you to forget the whole endeavor.

Not only is that process bad for you physiologically but it also affects how you feel about yourself. Nowhere else in your life do you allow this predictable and dependable cycle of repeated failure.

What if your work life went this way? How many failures would it take before you were fired or demoted? How about in your personal relationships? What if you were 92 percent monogamous? How many infidelities would it take for your significant other to leave? And what if you were careful with your toddler “most” of the time? How long would it take until Child Protective Services came to take your child from you?

In my opinion there are three things in my patients’ lives that change them forever: getting married, having children, and undergoing bariatric surgery. Maybe your list is similar. Of course, there are many other things that can change you pretty quickly, such as winning the lottery, getting divorced, going through personal bankruptcy, and losing a loved one. But for argument’s sake, I think marriage, children, and bariatric surgery rank somewhere near the top. In a single moment, any of these events dramatically shifts your life.

None of these undertakings is to be entered upon lightly. They entail big obligations. They involve relationships that require a lifetime of vigilance and nurturing. Most of us wouldn’t compromise our efforts with a spouse or a child. When things are important to you, no amount of work is too much to make them a success.

Until you approach your health in the same way, you’ll never achieve the same success. This is what I talk about when I say it’s got to matter to you. It’s true that losing 20 pounds doesn’t have same implication as being a bad parent. But you get my point.

This is one of the primary secrets to maintaining a healthy weight…

Michael Snyder, M.D., is a Board-Certified general surgeon and a highly respected leader and mentor in the field of bariatric surgery. He has performed more than 2,700 primary bariatric surgical procedures including post-surgical coaching and ongoing health care. Snyder is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and founder of The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery, a comprehensive, state-of-the-art surgical practice specializing in weight loss. He also is the founder of FullBar, LLC, a multi-million dollar company dedicated to improving the quality of people’s lives and helping them achieve their weight-loss goals through food products that assist them in feeling full so they eat less. His book, Full: A Life Without Dieting, is about losing weight without dieting and without surgery.

Speak to the professionals at The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery to find out more about weight loss surgery in the Denver area.  Give us a call today!

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Tuna Melt – FAST

This is total no brainer food… a fast lunch that is extremely nutritious and so delicious. I layer my scoop of tuna and cheese on top of a beautiful slice of ripe tomato as a base for my melt or simply place the tuna salad in a small dish and layer on the cheese. I make this all of the time! If you would like to fortify your food with added protein, whisk a tablespoons of Pure 100% Unflavored Whey Isolate, into your mayo before blending it into your tuna… then add the remaining ingredients.

I scoop my husband’s tuna on a toasted whole wheat English muffin and serve all melts with a side salad of baby greens.

Two 6 ounce pouches, Starkist albacore tuna
2 tablespoons Hellmann’s Light mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
Very thinly shaved celery
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 slices ripe tomato
4 slices Pepper Jack cheese
4 toasted whole wheat English muffin halves – for those who are eating bread

Prepare your favorite tuna salad… mine is simply tuna, mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, finely chopped red onion, celery, salt and pepper. Use a metal ice cream scoop to neatly portion your tuna!

Preheat broiler. Assemble tuna melts by placing an English muffin half on top of a foil lined baking sheet, a scoop of tuna salad on the tomato, with a slice of cheese covering all. Broil 6 to 8 minutes, until cheese starts to brown, and is bubbling around edges. Transfer to serving plates.

4 servings
Calories 243, fat 8g, carbs 3g, protein 25g


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Is There Any Fast Food That Is Healthy?

Fast food is widely known to be high in calories, fat and sodium, and many Americans eat it on a daily basis. There are some options that can make fast food healthier. Some fast food restaurants have responded to the growing obesity epidemic by offering nutritional information and healthy options.

Choose the Right Restaurant

While some fast food restaurants stick to the old standby burger and fries, many eateries have begun to focus on healthier menu options for their patrons. Nutritional information such as total calories and sugar, fat and sodium content may be readily accessible if you ask. Some restaurants are known to focus on healthy options in dining, but even some of the more traditional fast food places have begun to offer salads and fresh fruit menu options along with grilled chicken selections. Choosing the right restaurant is an important step in making fast food healthier.

Choose Healthier Side Dishes

While many people think of “fast food” as the traditional burger, fries and shake or fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy, one way to make fast food better for you is to choose healthier side dishes. If you have your heart set on that burger or fried food, skip the high-calorie, high-fat side dish and instead order a side salad, fruit cup or vegetable.

Eat Smaller Portions

One of the biggest problems with the American diet is portion size. Fast food restaurants are notorious for “super size” options. Fast food can be healthier food if the portions are kept under control. Don’t eat the two- or three-patty burger with cheese. Go for a single patty and load it up with vegetables. Go for the smaller snack wrap rather than the burger. Even a big salad with crispy chicken can contain 800 to 1,000 calories. Cut down by ordering a smaller salad, and substitute grilled chicken for the fried. Another method to control portions is to stop eating when you are full. People who eat fast often consume more food. Eating slower will allow you to be satisfied with less food.

Watch the Condiments and Desserts

Condiments such as salad and sandwich dressings often have hundreds of hidden calories. If you take the option of a salad, don’t get the creamy high-fat dressing, substitute a healthier vinaigrette dressing. Skip the mayo and use mustard instead on your sandwich or burger. If you must have the creamy dessert, eat a small cone instead of a large milk shake, share a dessert or have a yogurt parfait.

If you’re interested in healthy weight loss and available weight loss options, call The Denver Center for Bariatric Center.

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Fast Food: A Nighttime Trend?

Dietitians say late-night trips to the local drive-through may have an impact on our waistlines.

By Katherine Kam
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic – Feature

Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Craving a burrito at 11 p.m.? Taco Bell stands ready to serve you a “Fourthmeal,” which it advertises as “the meal between dinner and breakfast.”

We’re a mobile, wired nation that works and eats at all hours — and the fast-food giants have noticed.

“We saw a skewing toward a 24-7 society,” says Taco Bell spokesman Will Bortz. As a result, Taco Bell and other fast-food restaurants have created ad campaigns to promote eating late in the evening and well into the darkest of night.

But in a nation struggling with obesity, overdoing the late-night fast food may wreak havoc with our waistlines and health. “When we look at why certain people are overweight or really have trouble losing weight, you look at your environment,” says American Dietetic Association (ADA) spokeswoman Suzanne Farrell, MS, RD. “Having some of these things available 24-7 for some people makes it more challenging.”

Fast Food: A Big Business

In 2005, Americans spent roughly $127 billion at quick-service restaurants, which include fast food, according to Technomic, a Chicago-based restaurant research and consulting firm. Eric Schlosser, author of the 2001 book Fast Food Nation, estimates that one-quarter of U.S. adults visit a fast-food restaurant on a typical day.

The late night opens a whole new frontier for profits, says Gregg Cebrzynski, a marketing editor who tracks trends for Nation’s Restaurant News. Chains are battling it out for customers. “There’s this whole idea that late night and early morning sales is what they really have to go after,” he says.

In April, Taco Bell began promoting Fourthmeals at its restaurants, many of which stay open until 1 a.m. or later. In August, McDonald’s aimed a new late-night campaign at young people who live on a steady diet of text messaging. In selected markets, McDonald’s allows customers to sign up via the Internet to have late-night deals text-messaged right to their cell phones. And of course, Wendy’s runs TV commercials that feature raccoons on late-night food forages that lead them straight to the burger chain.

More and more, fast-food restaurants that keep traditional 6 to 10 p.m. dinner hours are going the way of the carhop. Many chains, including McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Taco Bell, have extended their evening hours or stay open 24 hours, sometimes with a drive-through window.

Why Late-Night Eating?

“Because of the way people work these days — many out of their homes, many with different schedules — the traditional 9-to-5 day has morphed into a 12-noon-to-midnight day,” Cebrzynski says.

That’s also true for college students, dietitians say. Many attend class during the day, work an evening job, and pick up fast food when they clock out. “They’re looking for something fast and inexpensive, and I’m not always sure that nutrition is on the forefront of their minds,” says ADA spokeswoman Amy Jamieson-Petonic, RD.

But there are other reasons for late fast-food jaunts, she adds. “People tend to consume more between the hours of 7 p.m. and 11 p.m. because that’s their downtime — their time to unwind. I think a lot of times, sitting in front of the TV equates with eating.”

Night owls may also binge on fast food out of loneliness or for emotional reasons, including stress or boredom. “If you’re not able to sleep or you’re unhappy, food is very satisfying, calming and reassuring,” Jamieson-Petonic says. “For some people, it can become a behavior to deal with things.”

Is Late Eating a Problem?

Will eating late make people gain more weight? “That’s more of a nutritional myth,” says Suzanne Farrell, MS, RD. She is an ADA spokeswoman who’s also a dietitian in private practice in Denver. Jamieson-Petonic agrees. “However you get your calories over the day is fine.”

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The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery can answer all your questions regarding healthy eating and weight loss.  Give us a call today!


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Obesity & Health Consequences – Medical Co-Morbidities & Associated Problems

It’s Not Just The Way You Look
In a day and age when physical appearance counts for so much, the desire to look better and feel more confident is often our key motivation for losing weight. But being overweight or obese hinders us in many ways aside from the social. With statistics showing that more than 400,000 people a year die due to complications directly attributable to being obese, there’s a critical need to keep the health consequences in mind, too.

Physical Complications Of Obesity
The facts speak for themselves. When you’re overweight or obese, you’re at significantly greater risk for diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, high blood cholesterol, and more. When you’re morbidly obese, these risks are amplified. People who are considered morbidly obese have a significantly higher chance of the following (as compared to individuals who are not overweight):

  • Dying prematurely – morbidly obese individuals have a 300-500% greater chance of dying before the age of 76.
  • Developing medical problems including diabetes (1200% higher), high blood pressure (500-600% higher) and heart disease (200-400% higher).
  • Developing certain types of cancers such as colon, breast, and uterine.
  • Developing premature degenerative arthritis and joint pain causing limited mobility and activity.
  • Developing Sleep Apnea and Pulmonary Hypertension (which leads to heart failure).

Obesity And Cancer
In recent years, more and more studies have shown that certain kinds of cancer are associated with obesity. In fact, obesity, combined with a lack of physical activity, may account for 25 to 30% of several major cancers, including colon, breast (postmenopausal), endometrial, kidney, and esophageal. Obesity has also been associated with increases in uterine cancer.

Mental Health Issues
It comes as no surprise that being overweight affects your state of mind, too. In fact, emotional suffering may be one of the most painful parts of obesity. With so much emphasis on how we look, carrying extra weight makes us feel unattractive, unwanted, even unlovable. Prejudice and discrimination at school, in the job market, and in social situations is common, often leading to feelings of shame and – worse – depression.

What Can You Do About It?
While there is no cure for obesity, there are many ways to go about losing weight. And study after study shows that even a small amount of weight loss can improve your health. Methods of treatment will depend on your level of obesity, your overall health condition, and your motivation to lose weight. Whatever your situation, diet, exercise , and behavioral changes – or ideally a combination of the three – are the initial and safest therapies for obesity. For patients who are morbidly obese and have not been able to maintain weight loss, surgery may be an effective alternative. Whatever method you choose, remember: weight control is a life-long effort.

Weight-Loss Surgery
For people who are morbidly obese, weight-loss surgery is often their best chance at leading a healthier, longer, more fulfilling life. In fact, the National Institutes of Health and numerous other medical organizations have endorsed weight-loss surgery as an effective treatment for people considered morbidly obese (Read the NIH article). Weight-loss surgery achieves excellent long-term weight-loss for morbidly obese patients. In addition, a recent report from the Journal of the American Medical Association has detailed the numerous other health benefits of weight loss surgery:

  • Diabetes is cured in 77% of patients and resolved or improved in 86% of patients. Most patients are off all of their diabetes medications or have significantly reduced doses in the first three months after surgery. Blood sugar glucose levels and Hemoglobin A1c levels usually return to normal or near normal.
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure) is cured in 62% of patients and resolved or improved in 78.5%. Most patients are able to reduce their blood pressure medications to a single medication within a few months.
  • Hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol and high triglycerides) is improved in more than 70% of patients.
  • Obstructive sleep apnea is cured in 86% of patients.
  • Risk of death is decreased by 89%.

Other potential benefits include:

  • Improvement in arthritis, including a reduction in pain and increased mobility.
  • Resolution or improvement of numerous other conditions, such as: skin infections, skin rashes, ankle swelling, obesity-related heart failure, asthma, infertility and lymphedema.
  • Improved ability to participate in physical and recreational activities.
  • Improved social and economic opportunities.
  • Improved sense of well-being.

At The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery we want to provide you with the most update information on weight loss surgery and it’s health benefits.  Give us a call today to get more information.


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New strategies against obesity comorbidities

Worldwide obesity prevalence has nearly doubled since 1980.1 As obesity continues to increase at a dramatic rate, the risk for its associated comorbidities is skyrocketing as well. Obese adults are at risk for many serious health conditions, including diabetes, coronary heart disease, hypertension, stroke, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), depression and liver disease.

Lifestyle modification — to include dietary adjustment, exercise and behavioral change — has been proven to help treat obesity and its related diseases. As every clinician knows, however, behavioral changes are difficult to implement and have varying levels of success, depending on a patient’s motivation. What follows is a review the latest treatment strategies — intended for use in collaboration with lifestyle modification — for the comorbidities of obesity.

Diabesity is a term used to describe obese individuals who have type 2 diabetes. Such conventional diabetic treatments as sulfonylureas, thiazolidinediones (TZDs), and insulin promote weight gain, which can exacerbate further insulin resistance, worsen obesity-related comorbidities and reduce patient compliance.

Bariatric surgery is currently the most successful treatment for diabesity, resulting in significant weight loss and a sustained remission of diabetes in most patients.2,3 Many of the weight-loss effects of bariatric surgery have been shown to be mediated via postoperative increases in appetite-inhibitory gut hormones. Research is currently aimed at finding the pharmaceutical equivalent to bariatric surgery — a drug or combination therapy with anorexigenic gut hormones that can mimic the effects of surgery and restore a patient’s metabolism to a healthy, nondiabetic state.

Glucagon like peptide (GLP)-1 receptor agonist therapy is a major breakthrough in diabetes treatment. GLP-1 is a gut incretin hormone that stimulates the release of insulin in response to elevated levels of blood sugar, inhibits the release of glucagon following meals and slows the rate of absorption of foods from the gut into the bloodstream.

In the active form, GLP-1 has a short half-life of only one or two minutes, due to rapid destruction by the dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP)-4 enzyme, making it seemingly impractical as a diabetes treatment. However, the GLP-1 receptor agonists were designed to have a prolonged half-life attributable to reduced degradation by the DPP-4 enzyme. After many years of development, GLP-1 receptor agonists are now well established in the management of type 2 diabetes.

In addition exenatide (Byetta) and liraglutide (Victoza), several new GLP-1 receptor agonists are in development. Lixisenatide, a once-daily preparation currently in phase III clinical trials, has limited experience with only one clinical study to date. This 13-week study showed a 0.7% reduction in hemoglobin A1c with the use of lixisenatide 20 µg daily from a baseline of 7.5% in patients with type 2 diabetes.4 The National Institute of Health registry lists several ongoing clinical trials studying lixisenatide.

Bydureon is an investigational, long-acting form of exenatide that has been shown to have better glycemic effect than conventional exenatide.5 In October 2010, the FDA declined to approve Bydureon, requesting further testing to measure cardiovascular risk in patients taking the drug; Amylin plans to resubmit to the FDA in the second half of 2011.6 Bydureon was approved in the European Union in June 2011.

All of the GLP-1 receptor agonists currently require parenteral administration, which can interfere with patient compliance. Oral versions of GLP-1 are being developed and are currently in phase I clinical trials.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the leading cause of death throughout the world.8 The World Health Organization predicts deaths from CVD and stroke will exceed 20 million within the next decade. Risk factors include hypertension (HTN), diabetes, obesity and tobacco use. The leading risk factor for mortality, HTN is responsible for nearly 13% of deaths worldwide.9

Percutaneous renal denervation is a new and evolving HTN treatment. The procedure involves insertion of a percutaneous catheter into the common femoral artery and threaded to the renal arteries; six radiofrequency ablation treatments are then delivered distally and proximally from the bifurcation to the ostium. Each ablation involves delivery of eight watts of energy lasting two minutes.10

Patients with resistant essential HTN who have undergone this procedure have shown a reduction in systolic BP of 27 mm Hg at 12 months.10 Decreased arterial pressure after renal denervation is a result of reduced peripheral sympathetic nervous system activity.10

Based on animal research, it is assumed that denervation of the efferent nerves will result in reduced renin release, reduced sodium retention, and an increase in renal blood flow, producing a normalization of arterial pressure.10Data also support the idea that afferent sensory nerve denervation will attenuate the kidneys’ effect on centrally mediated sympathetic nervous system activity. Over time, the cause of an individual’s HTN may change due to altering variables. Therefore, denervation of efferent and afferent renal nerves is expected to produce a long-term treatment effect.

New hypertension guidelines are expected within the year from the Kidney Disease: Improved Global Outcomes (KDIGO) foundation and The Eighth Report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure (JNC 8).

Atherosclerosis presenting as coronary artery disease (CAD) and/or peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a significant and costly result of obesity. Medical treatments for this systemic disease remain relatively unchanged. However, there is renewed focus on prevention and early detection as evidenced by the new guidelines for women and heart disease from the American Heart Association.11

Risk factors for PAD include HTN, diabetes, hyperlipidemia and tobacco use. Because PAD can be asymptomatic, a comprehensive vascular exam is essential. Persons who are at highest risk are aged 70 years or older, smokers (current or past) and/or diabetic. The ankle-brachial pressure index (Table 1) should be measured in the office.

This calculates the ratio of the ankle to brachial systolic pressure and is determined using a sphygmomanometer and a handheld Doppler device. If detected early, treatment goals can be directed at risk reduction and limiting further disease progression.

Improved morbidity and mortality outcomes and improving walking distance are the two primary objectives in treatment of PAD. A supervised exercise treatment (walking program) is essential. This treatment can be costly and is often not reimbursed but is proven to provide significant improvements in functional outcomes. Maximal walking ability can be increased by 150%, greater than any pharmacologic approach.

Get more information about obesity and your health by calling The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery.



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The Benefits of Protein

High-protein, low-carbohydrate diets are the hottest thing since sliced flank steak, and every food marketer in the known universe appears to want a piece of the protein pie.

Body builders are snatching, grabbing, and gulping down protein shakes. Dieters are gobbling down protein bars (and shunning pasta) in hopes of quick weight loss.

The Power of Protein

It’s easy to understand the excitement. Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.

Along with fat and carbohydrates, protein is a “macronutrient,” meaning that the body needs relatively large amounts of it. Vitamins and minerals, which are needed in only small quantities, are called “micronutrients.” But unlike fat and carbohydrates, the body does not store protein, and therefore has no reservoir to draw on when it needs a new supply.

So you may assume the solution is to eat protein all day long. Not so fast, say nutritionists.

The truth is, we need less total protein that you might think. But we could all benefit from getting more protein from better food sources.

How Much Protein Is Enough?

We’ve all heard the myth that extra protein builds more muscle. In fact, the only way to build muscle is through exercise. Bodies need a modest amount of protein to function well. Extra protein doesn’t give you extra strength. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services:

  • Teenage boys and active men can get all the protein they need from three daily servingsfor a total of seven ounces.
  • For children age 2 to 6, most women, and some older people, the government recommends two daily servings for a total of five ounces.
  • For older children, teen girls, active women, and most men, the guidelines give the nod to two daily servings for a total of six ounces.

Everyone who eats an eight-ounce steak typically served in restaurants is getting more protein that their bodies need. Plus they’re getting a hefty amount of artery-clogging saturated fat as well.

The Drawbacks of High-Protein Diets

Many people who have jumped on the high-protein/low-carb bandwagon think that they can pack away as much protein as they like. But nutrition experts urge caution. The reasons why have to do with how high-protein/low-carb diets are thought to lead to weight loss. When people eat lots of protein but few carbohydrates, their metabolisms change into a state called ketosis. Ketosis means the body converts from burning carbs for fuel to burning its own fat. When fat is broken down, small bits of carbon called ketones are released into the bloodstream as energy sources. Ketosis, which also occurs in diabetes, tends to suppress appetite, causing people to eat less, and it also increases the body’s elimination of fluids through urine, resulting in a loss of water weight.

Get more information on healthy weight loss by contacting the knowledgeable staff at The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery.

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The Importance of a High Protein Diet

Protein is one of the building blocks of life and it’s consumption is essential for stimulating the growth of cells and helping to repair body tissue. high protein diet, list of high protein foods, high protein foods, protein foods, protein rich foodsThere are 20 different compounds we call amino acids. Different combinations of these make up all proteins. Depending on which amino acids link together, protein molecules can form enzymes, hormones, muscles, organs and many other tissues in the body.

The 20 compounds break down into two types of amino acids:

  • “non-essential” amino acids which can be made by the body.
  • “essential” amino acids which cannot be made by the body and must be absorbed from the food we eat. There are nine of these “essential” amino acids.

Any type of exercise or training you do will increase your bodys need for a high protein diet. A lack of quality protein will result in your body losing muscle tissue and tone, a reduction in the function of your immune system, a slower recovery rate and a lack of energy. If you are looking to build muscle and increase strength or even reduce body fat, whilst keeping definition and tone, a high protein diet from quality sources is of utmust importance. Try this book for 150 delicious high-protein meal ideas.

Animal and Plant Proteins

Animal Protein

Animal proteins contain all the essential amino acids. These can be known as “complete proteins”.

Oily fish, like salmon, sardines, trout or tuna, are excellent sources of protein. They also have the added advantage of being high in certain types of fatty acids that provide protection against heart attacks and strokes. Oily fish can contain up to eight times as much Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids as lean fish like cod, haddock or skate.

Chicken breasts and beef steaks are also great sources of animal protein and are very verstile when it comes to using them in recipes.

Animal protein is found in:

  • Dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Meat
  • Poultry

Plant Protein

Plant proteins contain many amino acids, but no single source contains all of the essential amino acids you need. You need to consume as many different plant proteins as possible if you want to make up the complete range of amino acids needed by your body when you’re trying to maintain a high protein diet.

Plant protein is found in:

  • Beans
  • Cereals
  • Grains
  • Legumes (peas, green beans)
  • Nuts
  • Pulses
  • Seeds
  • Soya products
  • Vegetable protein foods such as Quorn or veggie mince

How much protein do you need?

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of protein is 0.36 grams per pound of body weight. Current advice says protein only has to make up around 10 to 15 per cent of your daily diet to meet your body’s needs, which is around 55g for men and 45g for women. However, exercising can more than double your need for it, so if you’re exercising on a regular basis, you’ll need to consume at least 1.7 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. If you’re looking to build muscle as fast as possible, you could be looking at eating around 2.5 grams per kilogram of body weight.
high protein diet, list of high protein foods, high protein foods, protein foods, protein rich foods
Unfortunately, if you don’t get enough protein in your diet, your body will start to use your muscles, its own sources of protein, for energy! It starts eating away at your muscles – slowing your metabolic rate, reducing your strength AND bringing muscle growth to a grinding halt.

A high protein diet plays an important role in any fat loss programme. To lose weight you must restrict the number of calories you consume. As mentioned earlier however, when you cut down on what you eat, the body starts using muscle protein as energy – in other words, you are literally ‘eating’ yourself. You must get enough protein from your diet to cover these losses. If you fail to get enough protein on a daily basis, you’ll quickly lose strength and slow down your metabolic rate!

If you’ve been training with weights without seeing much in the way of results, then you can see it’s important to make sure you’re eating a high protein diet!

High Protein Food

If you’re looking to consume a high protein diet, we have included this list of high protein foods to use as a rough guide. Please use this to help you understand how much protein is in each food item.


  • Beefburger, 4 oz – 28 grams protein
  • Steak, 6 oz – 42 grams
  • Most cuts of beef – 7 grams of protein per ounce


  • Chicken breast, 3.5 oz – 30 grams protein
  • Chicken thigh (average size) – 10 grams
  • Drumstick – 11 grams
  • Wing – 6 grams
  • Chicken meat, cooked, 4 oz – 35 grams


  • Most fish fillets or fish steaks are about 22 grams of protein for 3 ½ oz (100 grams) of cooked fish, or 6 grams per ounce
  • Tuna, 6 oz can – 40 grams of protein


  • Pork chop, average – 22 grams protein
  • Pork loin or tenderloin, 4 oz – 29 grams
  • Ham, 3 oz serving – 19 grams
  • Ground pork, 1 oz raw – 5 grams; 3 oz cooked – 22 grams
  • Bacon, 1 rasher – 3 grams
  • Canadian-style bacon (back bacon), 1 rasher – 5–6 grams

Eggs and Dairy

  • Egg, large – 6 grams protein
  • Milk, 1 cup – 8 grams
  • Cottage cheese, ½ cup – 15 grams
  • Yogurt, 1 cup – usually 8-12 grams, check label
  • Soft cheeses (Mozzarella, Brie, Camembert), per oz – 6 grams
  • Medium cheeses (Cheddar, Swiss), per oz – 7-8 grams
  • Hard cheeses (Parmesan), per oz – 10 grams


  • Tofu, ½ cup – 20 grams protein
  • Tofu, 1 oz – 2.3 grams
  • Soy milk, 1 cup – 6-10 grams
  • Most beans (black, pinto, lentils, etc) about 7-10 grams protein per half cup of cooked beans
  • Soy beans, ½ cup cooked – 14 grams
  • Split peas, ½ cup cooked – 8 grams

Nuts and Seeds

  • Peanut butter, 2 Tablespoons – 8 grams protein
  • Almonds, ¼ cup – 8 grams
  • Peanuts, ¼ cup – 9 grams
  • Cashews, ¼ cup – 5 grams
  • Pecans, ¼ cup – 2.5 grams
  • Sunflower seeds, ¼ cup – 6 grams
  • Pumpkin seeds, ¼ cup – 19 grams
  • Flax seeds, ¼ cup – 8 grams

We hope this page has been helpful in developing your understanding of the importance of a high protein diet.

For more information, try reading The High Protein Cookbook, which details over 150 meal ideas that all contain at least 30 grams of protein!

Get more information on healthy weight loss programs by calling The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery.


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Pumpkin-Pecan Oatmeal with Pears

1 cup non-fat milk
½ cup non-fat powdered milk
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 cup quick cooking oats (uncooked)
½ cup canned pumpkin puree
2 cups canned pears in juice (diced)
2 tablespoons sugar substitute
8 ounces light vanilla yogurt
2 teaspoons chopped pecans

Combine skim milk and powdered milk, sugar substitute and pumpkin spices in a saucepan on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes and bring to the boiling point, stirring occasionally. Add oatmeal and heat for about 30 seconds. Add pumpkin pulp, pecans, vanilla yogurt, and pears and mix. Continue to heat about another minute, until oatmeal is heated through.


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27 Ideas for a Healthier Breakfast

Not only is breakfast the first food and drink your body has had in more than 8 hours, but studies find that what you eat for breakfast influences what you eat the rest of the day. Additionally, people who eat breakfast are significantly less likely to be obese and have diabetes than those who don’t.

The most important tip we can give you is to eat breakfast every day. Without exception. This one action alone can make a huge, positive difference in your health. But a doughnut or oversized muffin won’t do it. The key is to choose energy-enhancing, health-invigorating foods. That’s what we’ll focus on in the tips ahead.
1. Be consistent with your portions. For most people, a perfect breakfast has three components: one serving of a whole grain carbohydrate, one serving of a dairy or high-calcium food, and one serving of fruit. Together, that would add up to roughly 300 calories. A high-protein serving (i.e., a meat or an egg) is unnecessary but certainly acceptable, as long as it doesn’t add too much fat or calories to the mix. Here are a few winning combinations, based on this formula:

  • A bowl of high-fiber, multigrain cereal, lots of strawberries, and low-fat milk on top.
  • A granola bar, an apple, and a cold glass of milk.
  • A cup of nonfat yogurt, fresh blueberries mixed in, and a slice of whole wheat toast with a fruit spread on top.
  • A mini whole wheat bagel, spread lightly with cream cheese and jam; a peach; and a cup of yogurt.
  • A scrambled egg, a whole wheat roll, fresh fruit salad, and a cup of low-fat milk.
  • A low-fat muffin, a wedge of cantaloupe, and a cup of latte made with skim milk.

2. Have a bowl of sweetened brown rice. Consider it a takeoff on prepared cereal. Brown rice is full of energy-providing B vitamins, as well as a great source of filling fiber. Cook the rice the night before, then in the morning, put it in a bowl with a spoonful of honey, a handful of raisins, a cut-up apple, and a sprinkle of cinnamon for a unique yet delicious treat. Don’t like rice? Try any of the cooking grains: barley, rye, red wheat, oats, buckwheat, quinoa, or millet.

3. Pour a cup of fruit smoothie. Simply whir a cup of strawberries and a banana in the blender, add a scoop of protein powder and a cup of crushed ice, and you’ve got a healthy, on-the-go breakfast filled with antioxidants. Toss in a cup of plain yogurt, and you’ve just added a bone-strengthening dose of calcium. An added bonus: You’ve just crossed three of your daily fruit servings off the list.

4. Use organic eggs. They’re not much more expensive than regular eggs but are much higher in all-important omega-3 fatty acids, shown to benefit everything from your mental health (reducing risk of depression) to your heart health (reducing risk of atherosclerosis and atrial fibrillation), says Fred Pescatore, M.D., author of The Hamptons Diet and a physician at Partners in Integrative Medicine in New York City.

5. Sprinkle on a teaspoon of ground flaxseeds. It could be over your cereal, over your yogurt, over your smoothie, or over your eggs. Next to fish and organic eggs, flaxseeds are one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

6. Use Benecol, Take Control, or Smart Balance instead of butter. These newly developed soft food spreads contain heart-healthy plant stanols. Just 2 tablespoons daily can significantly lower your total cholesterol level.


There’s more to weight loss than just a healthy breakfast.  Get in touch with us today and find out how The Denver Center for Bariatric Surgery can help you with your weight loss goals.


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