The Playbook For The Modern Man

Scientists Confirm The Beloved Meat Snack That’s Sabotaging Your High-Protein Diet

Better stick to chicken and leek…

If a lunchtime meat pie or a post-workout Maccas are part of your ‘high-protein’ diet, scientists have bad news for you.

The latest CSIRO Healthy Diet Score survey, which investigated the diets of 200,000 Australians, revealed that people with ‘low-quality’ diets got eight times more of their protein from junk food than people with high-quality diets—and were more than three times as likely to be obese.

This survey serves as a reminder that, “Not all foods that contain protein are good for you,” CSIRO Principal Research Scientist Professor Manny Noakes points out.

“Our research also shows that many people are not getting their protein from healthy foods.”

Another problem is that most Australians are far from an average weight. As reported by Gizmodo, more than 60 per cent of us are “overweight or obese,” and our understanding of protein could be a contributing factor.

Processed foods like pies, burgers, pizza with processed meats, chicken nuggets, sausages, cakes, ice cream and biscuits, were the second highest contributor to protein intake for people with low-quality diet scores.


On the other hand, people with higher-quality diets got their protein from whole foods, including chicken, red meat, fish, eggs, milk, cereals, nuts and yoghurt. For this group, junk food only accounted for about three per cent of their total protein intake.

Not only is this healthier in itself, but, “Higher protein-healthy meals help to control appetite and can help to reduce the urge to indulge in junk food,” Professor Noakes said.

This means that research into the affordability of whole-food based protein is important, as well as making the CSIRO’s January recommendation that we eat “At least 25 grams of protein at each main meal to help control hunger and enhance muscle metabolism,” public knowledge.

RELATED: Lebron James’ Ketogenic Diet Could Be Your Ticket To Becoming A Shredded Beast…But At What Cost?


Get exclusive content, special offers and latest news delivered to your inbox.

  • Carbconscious

    They are barking at the wrong tree. The “processed foods” cited here, like “pies, burgers, pizza” stand out not because they contain low quality protein, but because they have tons of carbs! That is the flour found in the pie crust, the burger bun, and the pizza dough… not to mention the sugar found in “cakes, ice cream and biscuits”.

    By contrast, the “whole foods” cited as good sources of protein include “chicken, red meat, fish, eggs, milk, cereals, nuts and yoghurt”. Most of them are typically eaten without adding tons of flour and sugar. That is why they are good sources of protein… because they actually contain protein as opposed to carbs.

    By the way, if you add a side of mash potatoes, french fries or rice (all of them carbs) to your protein, you will get fat too. Stick to salad or steamed vegetables like squash, zucchini, eggplant, cauliflower, broccoli…

    The problem is not the protein, it’s the carbs!

  • Annika Dalley

    Or the extra fat… boiled potatoes have been found to be one of the most satiating foods per gram. If it were true that all carbs are bad, then why do people lose weight and lower cholesterol on a low fat, high carb, low-moderate protein diet?


Show More

The playbook for the modern man

Get the very best of men's style, health, travel & culture delivered to your inbox.

Dont show me this again