Protein

Hybrid protein offers malaria protection

Plasmodium falciparum
HACK THE ATTACK A malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is expert at invading red blood cells (shown in this colored TEM image). But a hybrid protein that spans the red blood cell membrane can thwart an attack, a new study found.

Dogged genetic detective work has led scientists to a hybrid red blood cell protein that offers some protection against malaria.

Reporting online May 18 in Science, researchers describe a genetic variant that apparently is responsible for the fusion of two proteins that protrude from the membranes of red blood cells. In its hybrid form, the protein somehow makes it more difficult for the malaria parasite to invade the blood cells.

Successful invasion by the parasite can cause flulike illness, and in severe cases, death. In 2015, 212 million cases of malaria occurred worldwide, according to the World Health Organization, and 429,000 people died, mostly young children.

People carrying the protective genetic variant are 30 to 50 percent less likely to develop severe malaria than those without, the researchers report. The genetic change was found largely in people from Kenya, Malawi and Tanzania, suggesting that it occurred relatively recently in East Africa.

Discovering any genetic changes that protect against malaria is of great interest, says hematologist and malaria specialist Dave Roberts of the University of Oxford, who was not involved with the study. Understanding such changes, he says, “may help us understand the pathological pathways by which the parasite causes so much disease.”

Previous research had hinted that genetic changes to a particular stretch of DNA on chromosome 4 offered some protection against malaria. But the research team, an international collaboration that included researchers and clinicians from across Africa, had to do substantial legwork spanning 10 years to unmask the changes. Databases that gather the genetic instruction books, or genomes, of individuals are biased toward European populations, while African samples are underrepresented. And human genetic diversity is particularly high in sub-Saharan Africa, so genomes with rare genetic changes can be easily missed.

Meatless Protein: Top 10 High Protein Vegan Foods For All The Vegan Gym People!

It’s very hard to be a vegan athlete: Not only do they have to plan their meals more carefully than their meat-eating counterparts, but they are also frequently subject to intense skepticism and scrutiny from the athletic community at large. You can’t gain muscle if you don’t eat meat. There’s no way you’re getting enough protein to accommodate your workout schedule.

Do any of these statements or questions sound familiar?

If you’ve been a vegan athlete for more than, say, a week, I’m betting the answer is “yes”.

These comments are annoying and misguided. Still, they do have a small grain of truth to them: If you’re working out regularly, then it’s vital to consume plenty of protein on a regular basis. That’s because protein provides our bodies with the fuel they need to power through workouts and recover after them.

Here’s what happens if athletes (whether vegan or carnivorous) don’t consume enough protein:

Your body will break down muscle instead of building it.

When you aren’t eating enough protein, your body needs to find fuel somewhere else—and if it gets desperate enough, it will start “feeding” on your own tissues in order to do so. More specifically, the body will start to tear down muscle tissue1 in order to obtain the amino acids that are necessary for sustaining the function of your organs. Obviously, the loss of muscle mass is the last thing any athlete wants.

It will take longer to recover from injuries.

Our bodies require protein2 in order to repair damaged cells, skin, and tissues. When we’re not consuming enough protein, our bodies won’t recover from injuries as quickly, and we’ll suffer from decreased immunity overall. This can be a major setback for anyone attempting to follow a rigorous training plan.

You’ll feel tired all the time.

If you’re not getting enough protein—especially as an athlete—then you’re liable to suffer from chronic fatigue3 or a general sense of sluggishness. This can seriously impair your workout routine, because you’re less likely to show up for your workouts or power through intense workouts if you’re constantly feeling tired.

So it is true that protein should play a major role in athletes’ diets. But it certainly is not true that it’s impossible for vegans to eat a high-protein diet. We’ll prove it in the following section.

High-Protein Foods for Vegan Athletes

There is a huge variety of vegan foods that are packed with protein. Below, we’ve highlighted 10 of the best.

These teeny tiny little seeds are known as a superfood for a reason: They pack four grams of protein into just two tablespoons, and they also boast plenty of other nutrients in the form of calcium, fiber, iron, magnesium, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. Chia seeds can be added raw to a variety of dishes, from smoothies to oatmeal or yogurt parfaits. Give them a try in this recipe for Chia Vegan Protein Muffins.

Young soybeans (aka edamame) boast 11 grams of complete protein per half cup, which makes them a stellar source of protein. They’re…

Improve The Efficiency Of Your Workout by Adding These 10+ Foods That Build Muscle

Exercise is most probably the best way to keep yourself fit and in good shape. However, what a lot of people actually don’t know is the fact that your eating and feeding pattern also has quite a lot to say about it. Very quickly, we’ll like to run down a few foods that increase the efficiency and results of your exercise regimen by contributing through muscle building .

Lean Beef

If you want to gain muscle mass, lean beef should be a regular in your diet. It is packed full of a lot of constituents, including zinc, iron and B-vitamins, all of which make a conducive environment for the growth of muscle mass. It also provides your body with high volumes of proteins and amino acids that stimulate muscle growth. If you’re trying to lose weight, you’ll be happy to know that a 3oz serving of lean beef has the ability to provide the same amount of protein as 1.5 cups of beans.

Chicken (but without the skins)

Just as it is with beef, chicken is also an amazing source of protein, which is important for the growth and repair of muscle tissues, the overall health of the bone and maintaining weight1 . All you have to do is go to a local grocery store and you’ll easily find chicken meat that is cut into single serving sizes and which can be quickly seasoned and processed.

Cottage Cheese

Although not many people are aware of this, but cottage cheese is actually almost completely full of casein protein. Casein is a protein that causes slow digestion, meaning it is just [perfect for building muscles. For people who have to go long periods without consuming food, cottage cheese is perfect. It is also an excellent source of…

Try These Super Easy Protein Cookies Recipes If You Are On a Diet or A Regular Gym Routine!

Cookies are a perfect snack but people who are on diet find it impossible to satisfy their cookie craving because they are a high-calorie snack. The good news for the cookie lovers is that they do not have shun the delicious cookies just because you are on a diet. All you need to do is to get a little creative and you will be able to enjoy cookies without disturbing your diet.

There are excellent and tasty cookie recipes that are rich in protein and will give you nutrition that your body needs without compromising the diet and calorie count.

Here are some appetizing protein rich cookies recipes that will make a perfect snack.

These cookies a made up of six healthy ingredients and they do not require a lot of time and effort to make. It is an excellent post workout snack.

Ingredients:

• Ripened small banana

• Chia seeds

• Golden flax seeds

• Vanilla protein powder

• Peanut butter flour

• Dairy mini chocolate chips

• The oven should be preheated to 350 degrees F and prepare the baking sheet by using a parchment paper.

• Mash the banana in a hand mixer until it becomes creamy. Add flax seeds and chia and blend until it is thoroughly mixed.

• Add peanut flour and protein powder to the batter and mix until they are completely combined. Be careful while mixing because over mixing can make the batter hard and firm.

• Add chocolate chips and fold them into the batter.

• You can use the ice cream scoop to measure the cookies and put it on the baking sheet. Spread it by using the palm of your hand.

• Bake them for eight to nine minutes until the edges become brown.

• After taking them out of the oven,…

Struggling with What to Eat Tonight? Here are 20 Quick and Healthy Dinner Recipes For You To Choose!

You are a corporate workhorse. Your boss loves you for that. Your paycheque says it all. Life, as you know it, is good.

Okay, let’s cut to the chase. The other side of the story is you always head home with a tired body, exhausted brain, and a hungry stomach. Some nights you would go straight to your favorite fast food joint and get what seems to be your perpetual go-to meal. The question is, are you sure you are eating real, healthy food and not artificial junk masquerading as one?

On other days, you try to muster up all the skills you need to prepare yourself a decent meal–using whatever’s left of your weekly supply. You’re lucky if you happen to have whole grain noodles, fresh tomatoes, and parmesan. Otherwise, grilled skinless chicken breasts would also make a nice, healthy treat. In both instances, you feel a quick sigh of relief, a refreshing break from your rather stale, unhealthy diet.

You don’t need to force yourself to eat food that only does your body more harm than good. It only takes a few minutes to whip up something that will not only satisfy your palate but will also boost your energy for the next day

Here are 20 quick and healthy dinner recipes you can enjoy all without breaking a sweat.

When you get both nutrition and gastronomic indulgence, you know it’s something you need to try. This easy marinara recipe makes use of fresh vegetables, ground sirloin, and jarred marinara sauce–no need to do the sauce from scratch! If you’re preparing a week-long meal plan, this recipe is recommended as it has a shelf life of five days and can be kept in mason jars.

  • Total prep and cook time: 30-35 minutes
  • Health factor: Ground sirloin is the leanest cut of meat–that’s fatless protein for you!

White beans have a mellow, blunt taste to them which means you can mix them in whatever sauce or broth you have. This tuna quesadilla recipe takes its taste from fresh cherry tomato pico, making it a savory meal you can have any time of the day.

  • Total prep and cook time: 25 minutes
  • Health factor: Beans are known to score low on the glycemic index. This helps reduce your risk of heart diseases and diabetes.

Can’t get enough of marinara? Partner it with coconut oil to make a succulent base for this super quick sardine meal.

  • Total prep and cook time: 1 minute
  • Health factor: Aside from tuna, sardines are known to be one of the highest sources of omega-3 fatty acids which lower chances of heart diseases

The lemon’s tangy taste cuts through the fresh, earthy texture of vegetables ultimately providing you with a satisfying multi-sensory experience.

  • Total prep and cook time: 20 minutes
  • Health factor: Keeping a high-fiber diet can help lower cholesterol levels and improve digestion.

This simple Hawaiian dish offers a nice balance between the melt-in-your-mouth goodness of fresh salmon and the creamy, smooth taste of avocado. Add to this the filling quality of rice and you’ll surely have a full meal, hook, line, and sinker.

  • Total prep and cook time: 20 minutes
  • Health factor: Avocados are very nutritious and contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals as well as healthy fats.

A healthy and deliciously satisfying meal in a single sheet pan. This improved and simplified…

Why We Should Have More Vegetarian Protein and Where Can We Get It

Tell someone that you are a vegetarian and it is quite likely that the first thing you will be asked is, “But where do you get your protein?” A vegan friend of mine used to say that she felt as though she spent a significant part of her life explaining vegetarian protein1 to people.

Consuming the right amount of protein is important but how does plant-based protein compare to proteins derived from meat?

Animal Protein vs. Vegetarian Protein

When digested, protein is broken down into amino acids which are required for most metabolic processes. The main difference between animal protein and vegetarian protein is the types of amino acids that they contain.

Animal proteins are regarded as “complete” since they contain all of the essential amino acids. Vegetarian protein are sometimes viewed as being “incomplete” as some may lack one or more amino acid.2

However, there are various plants that are “complete” such as hemp seeds, quinoa, chlorella, and bee pollen. Furthermore, it is easy to combine different plant foods to have complete protein in your meals.

What are the Health Benefits of Vegetarian Protein

The good news is that you do not necessarily have to be a vegetarian to benefit from a plant-based diet! You can simply incorporate more vegetarian meals into your lifestyle. In fact, according to the American Dietetic Association, “appropriately-planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.” 3

These are 5 health benefits of vegetarian protein:

  • You will lower your intake of cholesterol and unhealthy saturated fat which will lower the chances of heart disease.4
  • Animal proteins have little to no fiber. A vegetarian meal provides a good source of fiber which will…

10 High Protein Low Fat Foods That All Gym People Need In Their Diet

If you are among active individuals seeking the best results from your exercise routine, diet, and lifestyle, the right balance of protein, carbohydrates, and low-fat foods are key factors that can provide you with the right nutrients and the most energy with few negative effects. Proteins are especially important for gym goers because they’re essential for building and repairing muscles and maintaining glycogen levels that support energy. That’s why you probably overheard fellow gym members talking about their high-protein, low-fat foods.

When you start a workout regimen, many concerns will come up. Will you be able to maintain muscle mass at a calorie deficit? Is it possible to maintain/gain muscle while losing fat? How do you maximize your performance at the gym? And on many days you will find yourself wondering how to recover from that muscle soreness as fast as possible. The answer to all these questions is protein.

Diet Essentials for fitness enthusiasts

  • High protein foods are very filling; they help build muscle, reduce cravings and fire up weight loss. Proteins are the most essential macronutrient for gym goers. In contrast, high-fat foods can slow down digestion and make food sit in your stomach for too long especially just before a workout.
  • Breakfast is extremely important to pump you full of energy at the beginning of your day. Complex carbohydrates, lean protein, healthy fats, and a variety of fruits and vegetables can all help boost energy and maximize nutrient levels. The most important macros to include in your breakfast, however, are proteins and complex carbohydrates.
  • Foods that support healthy brain functions should be a staple in every healthy diet. The best brain foods are those rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants. These include wild caught salmon, blueberries, nuts and seeds and avocados.

Do you feel tired easily during workouts?

  • If so, your body may be missing a substance called creatine to help top up energy levels. Creative is also leaked out of the muscles during workouts. This increases a condition called Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)
  • Creatine is found in high-protein foods such as red meat or in protein powders. 3-5…

Freekeh is Probably The New Quinoa! See why!

Freekeh is the “new” supergrain that has actually been around since the ancient times. We have just begun to tackle its numerous nutrition benefits, and it might just take quinoas place on the throne. Why? Well, it has more proteins and twice as much fiber than quinoa, thus you will feel full longer. In addition to being rich in proteins and fiber, it has many other health benefits.

So, what it is? Freekeh is actually a wheat that is harvested before it’s ripe, while the seeds are still green and soft thus retaining many of its nutrients. After it’s been harvested, it is dried in the sun and then carefully burned to remove the straw and chaff, leaving only the grain that has a slightly smoky and nutty taste.

Freekeh has been popular in Mediterranean and Middle East for a long time now, and its popularity has begun spreading due to its numerous benefits. This wheat improves your digestive health and due to its low glycaemic index, it can help manage and prevent type 2 diabetes.

Freekeh is full of healthy nutrients

Freekeh is full of proteins, fibers, vitamins and minerals such as calcium, iron and zinc. 100 grams of freekeh contains 1:

  • 14.9 g of protein
  • 12.9 g of fiber
  • 31 mg of zinc
  • 32 mg of iron
  • 370 mg of calcium

It also contains magnesium and potassium, it has low fat content and it’s considered a low-carb food. If we take a look at the nutrition profile of quinoa 2, we can see why freekeh is the new superfood – in 100 grams of quinoa, there are 8 grams of protein and 5.2 grams of fiber, compared to 14.9 grams of protein and 12.9 grams of fiber in 100 grams of freekeh.

100 grams of quinoa contains:

  • 8 g of protein
  • 5.2 g of fiber
  • 2 mg of zinc
  • 2.8 mg of iron
  • 31.5 mg of calcium

Freekeh improves your digestive health

Freekeh contains prebiotics that help the growth of healthy bacteria in your bowl system that can be beneficial for people suffering from various digestive problems such as diarrhea, leaky gut syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease and candida virus.

According to a study conducted by CSIRO 3, the consumption of freekeh…

30+ Super Tasty Spinach Smoothie Recipes You Need To Try At Home

Spinach is a popular super food that is filled with nutrients that will benefit your health.

There are lots of different health benefits to spinach; it can improve your hair and skin, it provides protein and iron and it can even help with bone health. Here are 5 of the main benefits of spinach.

5 Benefits of Spinach

1. It Can Improve Your Vision

Spinach is filled with xanathene, beta carotene and lutein, which all benefit your eyesight in various ways. Spinach also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce puffiness and sore eyes.

The potassium and folate in spinach provide neurological benefits; for instance, folate reduces the chance of Alzheimer’s disease.

3. It Lowers Your Chance Of Having Cataracts

Spinach contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which both work as antioxidants that protect your eyes from UV rays.

4. It Lowers Your Blood Pressure

The potassium in spinach will help to maintain your blood pressure, and the folate helps to relax your blood vessels to help maintain healthy blood flow.

5. It benefits babies Too!

The folate in spinach is used by a growing fetus for proper development of the nervous system.

Spinach also works very well in smoothies due to its clean, light flavor. As spinach isn’t too overwhelming it works well with lots of different flavor combinations, from sweet to savoury to spicy. Spinach also blends better than other green leaves such as kale.

Here are 30 spinach smoothie recipes you can try at home.

Sweet Spinach Smoothie Recipes

This delicious blackberry and ginger smoothie contains oats, orange juice, and three different types of fruit. It is sweet and refreshing, and the ginger adds anti-inflammatory properties.

Ingredients

1 cup frozen blackberries

1 cored apple, cut into pieces

1 banana, cut into pieces

2 handfuls spinach

Fresh peeled ginger

1 handful of oats

Orange juice

This beautiful pink smoothie is creamy and sweet, and it also contains lots of antioxidants and vitamin C.

Ingredients

1/4 cup raw almonds, soaked in water for 12 hours

3/4 cup water

1 cup frozen or fresh cherries

1 frozen banana

3/4 cup orange juice

2 cups spinach

This tasty smoothie tastes just like an ice cream, but it is actually very healthy. You can also substitute the milk for soy milk if you want to make a vegan version!

Ingredients

2½ cups milk

1 cup spinach

1 banana

½ avocado

8 mint leaves

optional: honey

Optional Toppings

Whipped cream

Grated dark chocolate

Mint leaves

This super healthy smoothie contains vitamin C-rich honeydew and kale, which is a great source of calcium. This refreshing, light smoothie is perfect for after a workout.

Ingredients

½ cup cubed honeydew

½ cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt

2 tablespoons water

1 cup spinach

1 cup kale

8 ice cubes

If you love chocolate this decadent smoothie is perfect for you – and it still contains spinach and banana for a health kick!

Ingredients

1 banana

1 cup spinach

1 cup ice

1 cup milk

3 tablespoons chia seeds

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

This delicious smoothie tastes like a dessert in a glass, so it is perfect for anyone with a serious sweet tooth.

Ingredients

1/4 cup raw almonds

1 tablespoon flax seeds

3/4 cup almond milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup frozen cherries

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

3 dates

1 cup baby spinach

2 tablespoon coconut cream

This is another wonderful dessert smoothie that was created for key lime pie lovers. Thankfully it is much healthier than an actual key lime pie – and it is vegan!

Ingredients

2 cups coconut water

¼ cup lime juice

½ avocado

¼ cup shredded coconut

2 handfuls spinach leaves

3 Medjool dates

2 handfuls ice

This smoothie is tangy and refreshing with a sweet pineapple kick. It also contains vitamin B6.

Ingredients

¾ cup water

2 cups pineapple chunks

1 avocado, halved

2 cups spinach

½ cup ice cubes

This smoothie may be sweet, but it still contains a whopping seven vegetables and fruits so it is very good…

26 High-Protein Low-Fat Foods to Help You Lose Extra Pounds

Most of you may have dreamed of building a perfect body with ‘six-pack abs’ or a ‘thigh gap’. Yes, that’s my dream too.

No matter why you’re trying to get in shape, perhaps you want to become physically stronger, or you want to look better and healthier, there may be times in which it feels like exercising is useless.

An effective plan to lose weight always includes a proper diet. Here’s the simple logic: when your energy intake is greater than your energy output, you gain weight; when your energy output is greater than your energy intake, you lose weight. So without a proper diet, exercise will seem to be useless.

Why High-Protein Low-Fat Foods Are Crucial to Weight Loss

Instead of consuming fat, protein is a better option to reduce the energy intake. Protein plays a major role in building and repairing muscle. It also facilitates the fat-burning metabolism in your body and reduces your appetite so that you eat less. Science reveals another surprising fact about protein: protein itself can make you lose weight even without conscious calories restriction.1 Wow! That’s good news. This means maybe you can lose weight by adjusting you eating habit!

Here we have an extensive list of high-protein low-fat foods for you to work on your weight-loss plan. There are some foods that you may be overlooking!

Fruit and Vegetables

Protein Power: 5 g per 1 cup serving

Spinach does not only contain protein but also vitamins A and C, antioxidants and heart-health folate (folic acid). It is also a good source of manganese, magnesium, and iron.

Steam your spinach instead of eating it raw. This helps retain vitamins and makes it easier for your body to absorb the calcium content. You may also add spinach to soups, or simply steam it and top with pepper, garlic, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.

2. Sun-dried Tomatoes

Protein Power: 6 g per 1 cup serving

Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, which can reduce your risk of bladder, lung, prostate, skin, and stomach cancer, as well as decrease the risk of coronary artery disease. Compared with fresh ones, sun-dried tomatoes contain 20% more lycopene per serving.

They are available dry or packed in oil. Sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil are softer and easier to blend into receipes. You may use them in salads, sandwiches, sauces, or use them as a pizza topping.

3. Guava

Protein Power: 4.2 g per 1 cup serving

This tropical fruit is an excellent source of vitamin C. It is also extraordinarily rich in lycopene and antioxidants that are beneficial for your skin. Without compromising your intake of proteins, vitamins and fiber, guava helps you lose weight by regulating your metabolism.

Eat it raw. Guava, especially raw guava, has far less sugar compared to other fruits like apples, oranges, and grapes.

4. Artichokes

Protein Power: 4.2 g per 1 medium vegetable

Artichokes are rich in fiber and protein, which are the two important elements for making your stomach full so that the hormone which increases your appetite is suppressed. If you want to lose weight, artichokes should be definitely on your list.

Boil and eat the whole artichoke as a self-contained salad. You may also add some goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes to make it taste better.

5. Peas

Protein Power: 8 g per 1 cup serving

A cup of green peas contains 8 times the protein of a cup of spinach. Peas are a very good source of vitamins, manganese, and fiber. The high-level of fiber helps you to stay away from cravings for junk food.

You may add some green peas to an omelet to boost eggs’ satiating power. If you are looking for the frozen green peas, make sure there’s no giant pea ice cube in the bag. A giant pea ice cube means the peas have been thawed previously and then refrozen, which may degrade their quality.

Red Meat

6. Grass-fed Beef

Protein Power: 26 g per 4 oz serving

Everyone knows that red meat like beef contains a rich amount of protein. But grass-fed beef does more good to you than conventional grain-fed beef. Grass-fed beef is naturally leaner and has fewer calories and fat. The omega-3 fatty acids in it also reduces the risk of heart disease.

Grass-fed beef is more expensive than the grain-fed one. But its nutritional benefits are way greater.

7. Ostrich

Protein Power: 29 g per 4 oz serving

Another kind of red meat you may want to try is ostrich meat. It has less fat than turkey or chicken but has the rich taste of beef. The choline in ostrich meat is also one of the essential nutrients for fat loss.

Ostrich meat is easy to prepare and rich in taste. Ideally, a steak or fillet should be served medium rare. It will become dry if it is fully cooked.

8. Pork

Protein Power: 24 g per 4 oz serving

Pork is another typical red meat that is rich in protein. Among all the parts of pork, you should choose to have pork tenderloin, which is believed to be the healthiest choice. It has slightly less fat than a skinless chicken breast. Science also proves that fresh lean pork helps with the reduction of your waist size, BMI, and belly fat! 2

Soak your pork in brine to have more tender meat by helping to break down muscle tissue. Cover and chill for 30 minutes to 2 hours…