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Protein

Protein-enhanced foods: The good, bad and ugly

Friday, August 23, 2013 by: Sandeep Godiyal
Tags: protein, enhanced foods, nutrition

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(NaturalNews) There is a developing trend in the world of nutrition. It seems that protein enhancement of many foods is becoming increasingly popular. Any time that you begin to alter the natural state of food, especially food that is already considered healthy, you run the risk of causing more damage than good.

Are protein enhanced foods a good choice for those that are looking to eat healthy but want more protein in their diet? Well, it turns out that the answer is not that simple. There are certain foods in which protein enhancement seems to have a more positive impact than others. It is important to understand it's not only what is being done to food, but the process through which it is accomplished that has to be considered

This article will take a brief look at several foods that have been protein enhanced to discuss whether the process presented a food worthy of the title "Healthy."

Flavored Water

The idea of protein fortified water borders on the edge of ridiculous. What you actually have with these types of water products is water with flavor added, normally containing a combination of natural and artificial sweeteners. As far as the protein is concerned, that is accomplished by the addition of protein isolate, which provides a maximum of several grams of protein per serving. At the end of the day, water is water, and its greatest benefits to the human body are accomplished when it is in its most natural state.

Cereal

Cereal can easily be protein fortified with the addition of soy protein isolate; however, having an increased level of protein does not automatically qualify these cereals to be health foods. Most cereals will fail the health test because of their high levels of sugar content. When making your cereal purchases, be sure to read the labels carefully to ensure that you are purchasing cereal made from whole grains.

Protein Bars

Protein bars are another category in which you will want to be very careful in what you choose. There are some bars that do a very good job in providing high protein content through the introduction of whey, soy or a mixture of nuts. The truth is that this can be accomplished just as easily by eating nuts directly. This way, you would not have to be concerned with what else may possibly be added to the bar.

Bread

Even bread has entered the game of protein fortification. This is primarily accomplished by using wheat gluten or soy protein isolate. What this equates to is an additional 2-3 grams of protein per slice. Please note that caution is necessary here. Gluten can be difficult for some people to digest.

Shakes

The protein shake is one of the most popular protein enhanced foods on the market. The problem is that there are so many variations of shakes and brands that a general assessment is impossible. There are some good protein shakes out there and some that are horrible health wise. Take the time to know what is going into your favorite shake.

Ultimately, it will be your responsibility to know all of the ingredients that are added to your favorite foods. There are some good protein fortified foods, but protein alone does not qualify them as healthy.

Sources for this article include:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

http://healthyeating.sfgate.com

http://nutrition.about.com

About the author:
Sandeep has written many health field articles for both Internet and print publication. He currently writing for insurancetips4u.co.

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