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Prep your protein!

We chat to the Body Coach, Joe Wicks, about the importance of protein

Image of Joe Wicks: © Conor McDonnell

Why is it important for people to make sure that they get sufficient protein in their diet?

Joe: “Protein is the essential building block for all muscle tissue in the body. It’s needed for building and repairing muscle after exercise and if you don’t have enough protein, it’s difficult to build a strong, lean body.”

What aspect of health and wellbeing is protein particularly needed for?

Joe: “It’s essential for everything like the production of hormones, skin, hair and muscle. So, if I go and do an intensive HIIT session, I’d normally have a protein and carb-heavy meal afterwards. My new book has loads of delicious, inspiring veggie recipes in it which are perfect to help you feel and look great.”

How much protein should people be eating, on average, on a daily basis?

Joe: “There’s no magic number for everyone; it depends on body shape and how lean your muscles are. Aim to have protein in every meal – including breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can’t really be specific as it’s unique to each body.”

Is it difficult for vegetarians to get sufficient protein from their diets since they don’t eat meat?

Joe: “It’s more challenging but if you’re smart and you combine the right foods together, then you can get all the essential amino acids, which are protein. You have to combine different sources to get the complete amino acids you need, so mix pulses, vegetables, grains and good fats such as cheese, yogurt and avocados. Remember, it’s about prepping like a boss.”

What are the best sources of vegetarian protein?

Joe: “Beans, pulses, vegetables like broccoli and spinach, nuts and seeds like almonds and flaxseeds – these are all protein-rich veggie sources of food and you can try them in loads of different meals and recipes!”

Read Joe's protein-powered recipes here...

Read the Your Food articles archive here...