What Types of Food Are High in Protein?

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Foods high in protein include meats, poultry, seafood, eggs, beans, peas, nuts and seeds, according to the United States Department of Agriculture, or USDA. Processed soy products are also a source of high-protein foods.

The amount of protein needed daily depends on the person’s sex and age and on the person’s usual level of physical activity. The USDA provides a chart on its website Choosemyplate, which lists the recommended daily protein intake for various groups.

When choosing high-protein foods, opt for lean cuts of beef, pork, ham, lamb and veal, notes the USDA. Other meats to consider are game meats, like venison and bison, and lean ground meats, including pork and beef. Seafood, including cod, haddock, halibut and catfish, is a good option for adding more protein to the diet, and shellfish – such as oysters, scallops and clams – is also high in protein. Certain canned fish, including tuna, sardines and anchovies, can be added to a high-protein diet. Giblets and organ meats are also good options, as well as turkey, chicken and other poultry choices.

Both chicken and duck eggs are good sources for protein. Beans and peas, including kidney beans, pinto beans, lentils, split peas and falafel, are all protein-rich foods. Processed soy products, including veggie burgers, tofu and tempeh, are good options for getting protein into a vegan or vegetarian diet.