When Picking Protein Choices, Quality Matters

When Picking Protein Choices, Quality Matters

We already know that protein is an incredibly important macronutrient. From balancing fluids to helping support immune function to fueling the body with an energy source, the roles that protein plays in the body are plenty.

But not all protein sources are created equal. While it is true that all proteins will provide your body with important amino acids, the quality of your protein matters.


Complete vs. Incomplete Protein

When it comes to sources of protein, there are numerous options to choose from. But even though there are many proteins out there, there are two categories that each will fall under: complete or incomplete.

Proteins are made up of building blocks known as amino acids, of which there are 20 different types. Essential amino acids are those amino acids that our body can not make, and therefore need to be obtained via our diet. A protein that contains all the essential amino acids in adequate amounts is known as a complete protein, while a protein that is void of more essential amino acids is known as an incomplete protein. We need all of the essential amino acids in order for the body to function properly.

Animal-based proteins, such as those found in meat, poultry, dairy, fish, and eggs, are generally complete proteins. Many plant-based proteins, on the other hand, are incomplete proteins, with the exception of a few like soy and pistachios, which are complete proteins.

It's important to note, however, that you can still obtain all the essential amino acids from an incomplete protein diet by eating a combination of complementary protein sources. Combining certain plant-based protein sources, such as beans and rice, can create a complete protein source that provides all the essential amino acids.


How To Pick The Best Protein Choices

Opting for a complete protein, AKA a protein choice that is typically sourced from animals, can guarantee that you are including all of the essential amino acids in your diet.

But if you are focused on supporting your overall health, knowing how your protein was sourced can make a world of difference.

Some things to look for when opting for the highest quality protein choices:

  • When choosing beef, lean on pasture raised and grass-fed choices to provide your body with important omega-3 fatty acids that may support heart health.
  • Your fish choices should be wild-caught or raised-in-the-wild, using certified sustainable practices that ensure good stewardship of both the animal and their natural habitats. The wild-caught or raised-in-the-wild aspect may help you consume more heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids while avoiding exposure to potentially harmful compounds like dioxins.
  • Poultry options should be antibiotic, steroid, and hormone-free, fed a 100% vegetarian diet, and are free to roam as weather and conditions permit. This helps keep your chicken and turkey high-quality, free from unwanted compounds, and may result in meat that contains more of certain nutrients.
  • When choosing pork, get a cut that comes from hogs that are raised in open-pasture farms and that are raised without any antibiotics, hormones or steroids.
  • Lamb should be 100% grass-fed, and 100% free of antibiotics, steroids or hormones.

One easy way to ensure that your meat is checking all of these important boxes is by getting your beef, chicken, fish, lamb, and other animal-sourced proteins from Rastelli’s. Since 1976, they have been providing protein choices that are of the upmost quality and free from any questionable additions. No matter what your protein-of-choice is, leaning on Rastelli’s to supply your options will help you ensure that you are enjoying high-quality and nutritious choices that are free from antibiotics, hormones, and steroids. Plus, everything sold under the Rastelli’s umbrella is responsibly raised, helping you feel confident that your beef is pasture raised and your fish is sustainably sourced.

If you are ready to fill your plate with complete high-quality protein, leaning on Rastelli’s as your protein source will help you reach your goal simply and deliciously.

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