How to Make Your Own Protein Bars

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Protein bars have grown in popularity due to their convenience. The bars can be carried around and eaten at any time and place, perfect for people who skip breakfast or lunch. These bars are also a staple snack for weight lifters or anyone who enjoys a good workout. Although they won’t magically increase your muscle mass, they help to sculpt your muscles and define your body. Research says that if you do not eat protein within one hour of your workout, the gym time counts as wasted energy. Protein bars bought from the store usually contain preservatives, artificial sugar, and glycerin. They are also very expensive. Here is an easy recipe for making these healthy protein bars at home:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 cup flaxseeds
  • ½ cup white flour
  • ¼ cup nut mix (almonds, pistachio, walnuts, peanuts)
  • 1 cup dates, raisins and figs
  • 1 cup coconut powder
  • Vanilla protein powder
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder
  • Honey
  • Cooking oil or olive oil spray
  • Square or rectangle baking dish

Method:

Put the oats and flaxseeds in the food processor. Depending on your taste, grind them to your desired consistency. I prefer a chewy bar. Remove in a bowl and keep aside.Add the dates, raisins, and figs in the processor and mix. You can increase or decrease the quantities according to your taste. You can even substitute with cherries, blueberries, apricots, mashed bananas, strawberries, apples etc.

Once they are finely chopped, add the white flour, nut mix, coconut powder and protein powder. Mix well.Coconut will give out its natural oil and will help bind the dough.

The nuts cover up the bland flavor of flaxseed and oats and give it a much richer texture. Use whey protein if you are not going to consume the bars in a day. It lasts longer than soya protein.Add the oats and flaxseeds mixture and cardamom powder and mix well.

Add enough honey to bind the dough. You can even make a mixture of honey and water. For a different taste, try date syrup or all natural applesauce or sugar-free maple syrup, homemade apricot sauce etc.

As a little added extra why not drip some melted Divine chocolate (available here) on your protein bars just to give them that extra bit of kick! You can even add some orange juice if you want a little tangy flavor to your protein bars. Spray the baking dish with cooking olive oil and put the crumbly dough mixture. Press down. The consistency will be like pie base. Bake on high until the edges are golden brown. Allow it to cool and then cut into wedges. These refrigerate very well.

This article was written by Thomas Flynn, a champion body builder and fitness fanatic. Let us know what you think of the receipe – was it easy to follow? Did your protein bars taste nice? Let us know in the comments below!

How to Use Whey Proteins to Build Lean Muscle

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Many people use whey protein to build muscles. Proteins are the building blocks that bodies need to increase muscle mass. There are many sources of protein: meats, nuts and legumes. However, athletes often have a difficult time acquiring all the protein they need through these sources. Weightlifters simply can only eat so many cans of beans. Many athletes look to protein supplements, such as whey protein, for additional nutrition.

Protein

Proteins are the essential tools bodies need to build muscles. During any exercise, whether it is increasing cardiovascular endurance or building muscle strength, miniscule tears are made in the muscles being exercised. These tiny tears are repaired during recovery.

The torn muscles use proteins to rebuild themselves, because proteins have the necessary energy in a readily usable format. A gram of protein contains more energy than a gram of fat, and it can immediately be used. Fat, on the other hand, must first be converted to another form.

What is Whey?

Little Miss Muffet is perhaps the most famous endorser of whey protein. She sat on her tuffet, “eating curds and whey.” Whey is a byproduct of making cheese; it is also found in yogurt. When cheese is made, the whey is separated from the curd. Sometimes when a container of yogurt is opened, there is a clear or slightly yellow liquid sitting atop the yogurt. That is whey. It is edible, and very nutritious.

The nutritional benefits of whey are also available in supplemental forms. It can commonly found in powders, drinks and nutrition bars. These forms of whey protein are healthier than others. Cheese and yogurt often contain fat, along with whey protein. In supplemental forms, this fat has been eliminated. Powders, drinks and bars are convenient, healthy ways to consume whey.

When to Consume Protein

Protein should be eaten throughout the day. During the day, bodies do not rest. Cells constantly have functions they must perform. When they cannot fulfill their role, people become fatigued. The most common reason for this is a lack of energy, literally. When a body suffers from fatigue, its cells do not have enough calories, which are a measure of energy, at that moment.

Protein is an important source of calories. Generally, people regard calories as evil things, counting each one. Calories affect health, but calories from protein are some of the healthiest there are. Some calories are needed to function, and protein is a good source for them.

When to Whey

While protein is needed throughout the day, there are times when it is more helpful for building lean muscles than others. After a workout, a body is trying to rebuild those small tears in its muscles. This requires protein, and whey protein from powders, bars or drinks is ideal.

How Much Whey to Weigh

According to the medical community, athletes should take in 0.7 grams of protein per pound each day. According to this ratio, a 200 pound man should have 140 grams of protein each day. A 150 pound person should consume 105 grams and a 100 lady should eat 70 grams every day. These numbers ought to constitute an athlete’s entire protein consumption.

Whey protein ought to be a significant percentage of those numbers. The amount consumed immediately after a workout can vary with the intensity of the workout. Some athletes have as much as 50 grams of whey protein a day. For a 200 pound person, this would constitute a third of his protein.

Protein is an essential component of a healthy diet and a muscle building regimen. A balanced diet will include protein from a variety of sources, and it will have some with every meal. To build lean muscles, athletes ought to supplement this regular protein intake with whey protein immediately after a workout or competition. When taken after exercising, whey protein decreases recover time and builds lean muscles.

Get exercise equipment you need to build those muscles over at the BHI Store.

 

Author Bio: Jason Shiers writes for Iron Science, a manufacturer of quality nutritional supplements such as whey protein isolate  and creatine monohydrate.

Make Protein A Part Of Your Balanced Diet

Protien molecule
Protein fragment

Protein fragment - Vital for Health

For some reason protein gets ignored by most people. If you ask someone what makes a healthy diet the most common replies are low fat, reduced sugar, low salt. The emphasis is always on calories, sugar and fat.

Protein is an essential macro-nutrient. Along with fats and carbohydrates, proteins are one of the 3 macro-nutrients which provide us with a healthy balanced diet.

The most important role that proteins play in the human body is for the repair and development of body tissue. For athletes increased protein consumption is required to build stronger muscles and also to maintain them. However, it is not only athletes who need protein.

Protein helps to regulate appetite and also it maintains your metabolism. If you are trying to lose weight then you must reduce total calories, or create a calories deficit through increased exercise. If you fail to consume enough protein to rebuild your muscle tissue then your body will fail to create enough new muscle and muscle wastage will occur.

Muscle wastage is disastrous for those trying to lose weight because increase muscle mass raises metabolism. Metabolism, often referred to as basal metabolic rate (BMR) is that rate at which your body burns energy when resting. So to lose muscle tissue means you burn less energy which means you reduce your calorie deficit. So increasing protein consumption is vital if you are trying to lose weight. This is one of the reasons why low fat diets fail so often – people just do not get enough protein.

Protein has other functions though. In addition to providing the building blocks for muscle protein consumption also leads to an interesting hormonal response. When we digest protein our bodies release a hormone called PYY. This hormone helps to repress hunger so by eating meals with more protein you can ward of those hunger pangs for much longer.

Studies have shown that people who consume more protein for breakfast tend to snack less throughout the morning which can greatly reduce daily calorie intake.

Combining a protein rich diet with increased weight-bearing exercise helps you to lose weight in 4 ways:

  1. Exercise burns more calories
  2. Exercise releases PYY hormone to suppress hunger
  3. Increase protein intake helps build new muscle tissue to raise metabolism
  4. Protein consumption releases PYY hormone to further suppress hunger

If you combine increased protein consumption with more exercise you reduce your appetite further, as exercise also results in the release of the PYY hormone. This is why weight loss plans which combine a healthy and well-balanced diet with regular exercise always produce the best results in the long-term.

Reference:

A high-protein diet induces sustained reductions in appetite, ad libitum caloric intake, and body weight despite compensatory changes in diurnal plasma leptin and ghrelin concentrations” by David S Weigle et al, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 82, No. 1, 41-48, July 2005

Best Before Bed Snacks To Keep You Lean

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Stressed about late-night eating? One thing that many people do struggle cutting out of their daily schedule is late-night eating.

You’re at home with not much else to do but watch the television or surf the Internet and food just happens to go perfectly with both of these activities.

Chances are you’re also slightly hunger if you’ve eaten your dinner meal around six or seven and it’s now nearing ten or eleven pm.

But, will eating at night cause you to gain body weight? Or, can you safely have a snack and not have it influence your progress? [Read more...]

Learn How To Choose The Right Whey Protein

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What’s the best whey protein powder? Should you think that merely since you are consuming whey protein that you’re acquiring all of its incredible benefits you might be very wrong. If you’re picking incorrect, the possibilities that you are getting very few of the rewards from your whey are really quite high.

Inherently, whey is an outstanding way to obtain protein that is generally regarded as the earth’s perfect protein. This is because it’s a complete protein. This means that it is made up of all of the [Read more...]