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Which proteins are easily digestible with little to no fat?

by (35)
Updated about 11 hours ago
Created June 27, 2012 at 6:46 PM

In the Sport Journals WODbook, the author suggests having a post-workout meal that includes "carb-dense veggies (yams, squash, beets, parsnips) and some easily digestible protein (little to no fat)."

I'm not sure on the latter. As I understand it, eggs and meat are highly-digestible proteins. However, the fat/protein ratio of eggs = 4/5, ground beef (80% lean) = 17/15, chicken thigh = 8/13, and salmon = 22/39. These all have at least half as much fat as protein.

QUESTION: What whole paleo foods (not powder, "egg whites only", legumes, or dairy) qualify as "easily digestible protein" with "little to no fat"?

Lately I've been having nuked sweet potato, 2 scrambled eggs, and 2 bacon strips about 30-45 minutes after my CrossFit workouts (which are fantastic, by the way!).

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652 · July 06, 2012 at 6:22 PM

No real negative to eggs if they're from free range birds, but bacon is high in PUFA and especially Omega-6 so I wouldn't eat it that frequently.

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35 · June 29, 2012 at 3:02 PM

I work out fasted, so your answer helps.

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14877 · June 28, 2012 at 5:00 PM

right. I'm just going to go out and get beef heart every time I want a leaner cut of meat. LOL. that is not at all paleo by any means.

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21405 · June 28, 2012 at 12:24 PM

I think you'll be fine. Slowing digestion with fat isn't really a bad thing, considering the difference in digestion is so variable between the macros anyway. Personally, I'm under the impression the author still believes in the "No fats with carbs" mantra because the concept of having a surplus of calories (fat) with insulin (carbs) will cause you to get fat. This is a minimal concern with someone who works out regularly and is healthy.

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35 · June 28, 2012 at 11:12 AM

I appreciate your actually answering my question. Skinless chicken breast and non-fatty fish. What would you say is the negative to eating whole eggs and/or bacon?

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35 · June 28, 2012 at 11:10 AM

That's why I asked about "whole foods". It seems that throwing out the egg yolk is not "eating.real.food" straight up (paleo-style that is). Anyhow, what of the subjectivity of avoiding fat post-workout? Is that because fat slows digestion? Will I limit recovery with what I normally eat (eggs/bacon)?

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652 · June 28, 2012 at 2:13 AM

Oh yeah, shrimp is a good idea too, although it can get a bit pricey on its own.

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15976 · June 28, 2012 at 1:30 AM

Chicken breast.

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2904 · June 27, 2012 at 11:58 PM

Cooked egg whites are easy to digest. Raw not so much. Just an fyi.

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18635 · June 27, 2012 at 11:33 PM

+1 especially to the avoiding high fats on training days being subjective.

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8757 · June 27, 2012 at 11:07 PM

I like that....Just.Eat.Real.Food

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15400 · June 27, 2012 at 7:33 PM

gelatin? lean chicken breast from range-raise chickens?

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21405 · June 27, 2012 at 8:01 PM

You've ruled out most of the "easily digestible proteins with little to no fat" by ruling out egg whites - eggs are the most bioavailable of all consumable proteins and whites have no fat.

As VB said in the comments - That leaves gelatin (nutrient-sparse) and boneless/skinless chicken breast (effing gross).

For what it's worth, "Easily digestible" is subjective, and so is the advice to avoid fat post-workout.

Just. Eat. Real. Food.

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18635 · June 27, 2012 at 11:33 PM

+1 especially to the avoiding high fats on training days being subjective.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0
21405 · June 28, 2012 at 12:24 PM

I think you'll be fine. Slowing digestion with fat isn't really a bad thing, considering the difference in digestion is so variable between the macros anyway. Personally, I'm under the impression the author still believes in the "No fats with carbs" mantra because the concept of having a surplus of calories (fat) with insulin (carbs) will cause you to get fat. This is a minimal concern with someone who works out regularly and is healthy.

3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2
2904 · June 27, 2012 at 11:58 PM

Cooked egg whites are easy to digest. Raw not so much. Just an fyi.

345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821
8757 · June 27, 2012 at 11:07 PM

I like that....Just.Eat.Real.Food

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35 · June 28, 2012 at 11:10 AM

That's why I asked about "whole foods". It seems that throwing out the egg yolk is not "eating.real.food" straight up (paleo-style that is). Anyhow, what of the subjectivity of avoiding fat post-workout? Is that because fat slows digestion? Will I limit recovery with what I normally eat (eggs/bacon)?

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652 · June 27, 2012 at 9:30 PM

Low-fat/high-carb training days are pretty standard on Leangains. I usually have skinless chicken breasts as my protein source. Other good sources could be non-fatty fish.

I do buy only grass-fed beef and wild-caught fish, but for my training days I just buy the disgusting jumbo family packs of boneless/skinless chicken breasts and cut off all the fat. My justification is that a) free-range white-meat chicken is way too expensive for the amount you'd need to consume since it doesn't have many calories and b) since it's so lean you aren't as adversely affected by the worse PUFA ratios, toxins, etc., that conventional chicken meat may have. I would spend extra for free-range drumsticks or thighs, for example.

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652 · June 28, 2012 at 2:13 AM

Oh yeah, shrimp is a good idea too, although it can get a bit pricey on its own.

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35 · June 28, 2012 at 11:12 AM

I appreciate your actually answering my question. Skinless chicken breast and non-fatty fish. What would you say is the negative to eating whole eggs and/or bacon?

2fd566cefde2de38e75e1bc13a966e16
652 · July 06, 2012 at 6:22 PM

No real negative to eggs if they're from free range birds, but bacon is high in PUFA and especially Omega-6 so I wouldn't eat it that frequently.

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1032 · June 28, 2012 at 3:33 PM

Beef heart. When you trim off the exterior fat it is very lean. As a bonus, it is high in iron, cholesterol, and CoQ10. Also, it is delicious.

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14877 · June 28, 2012 at 5:00 PM

right. I'm just going to go out and get beef heart every time I want a leaner cut of meat. LOL. that is not at all paleo by any means.

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5188 · June 28, 2012 at 11:31 AM

Yup I was thinking tuna, but then I wouldn't be avoiding fat in the first place - that advice comes from the (questionable) idea that you will have been shoving carbs down your throat nonstop in order to drag yourself through the workout. If you've just been eating real food or worked out fasted then a bit of fat is going to do no more than help provide some handy vitamins.

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35 · June 29, 2012 at 3:02 PM

I work out fasted, so your answer helps.

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5853 · June 28, 2012 at 6:18 AM

Lean fish digest in my gut like no other. Well even salmon does. Its still very low in fat compared to beef i think.

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1578 · June 28, 2012 at 12:58 AM

You can use the typical boring stuff like lean chicken or canned tuna. Or you can upgrade that ish & get yourself some scallops, mahi mahi, shrimp or cod. They're very low fat (about 1-2g of fat/25g pro in 4oz if I recall). Other meats like bison steaks, ostrich steaks & Pork loin are pretty lean. You can do the beef jerky thing but that taste like lifeless cardboard. Sub with lean steaks like sirloin,cubed, or flanks(which is pretty much what beef jerky is made of)

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542 · April 01, 2013 at 2:58 AM

Steamed or baked fresh water fish. Water-packed sardines have some fat in the skin but they might work as well as some other things mentioned here.

And turkey breast. Trader Joe's sometimes carries kosher turkey breast. It's reasonably priced and you can cook it easily in a pressure cooker, crock pot or just simmer it in water on the stove. The water makes great stock for soups or sauces.

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