Weight loss meal plans should include adequate amounts of lean protein. Skinless chicken breast, as used in this tasty recipe, is a perfect addition to a weight loss meal plan.
Grilled, skinless chicken breast is a welcome addition to effective weight loss meal plans due to its low calorie count and high protein content. Eating chicken breast, without breading or skin, will help you eat fewer calories overall.
How Chicken Fits into Weight Loss Meal Plans
Here’s why lean chicken fits into weight loss meal plans. Eating grilled chicken breast helps fill you up without the extra calories. A 3-ounce portion of skinless, boneless chicken breast provides just 102 calories. Avoid fried chicken during weight loss because it contains more calories, as well as unhealthy fats.
Although grilled chicken breast is fairly low in calories, it’s packed with lean protein, which is beneficial when you’re trying to shed pounds. A 3-ounce chicken breast provides 19 grams of dietary protein.
Research on Effective Weight Loss Meal Plans
Several studies demonstrate that lean chicken should be part of weight loss meal plans.
• A 2014 study in the journal “Nutrition and Metabolism” showed that increasing protein in your diet boosts satiety and your body’s energy expenditure. This is because protein helps you full with fewer calories and helps your body burn extra calories.
• A 2013 study in “Obesity” found that boosting dietary protein decreases total body fat and abdominal fat but helps increase lean body mass and your body’s energy expenditure during periods of weight maintenance and weight loss. Subjects who participated in this study obtained approximately 35 percent of their calorie intake from protein.
Grilled Moroccan Chicken
Ingredients (makes 4 servings)
• 1⁄2 cup plain yogurt
• 2 teaspoons lemon zest
• 2 tablespoons lemon juice
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin
• 1⁄2 teaspoon ground coriander
• 1⁄2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
• 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
• 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
• 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken
1. Mix the yogurt with the seasonings place in a plastic bag or overnight dish with a cover.
2. Parse out a few spoonfuls of yogurt mixture to have as a side for dipping before adding chicken.
3. Cut the chicken into skewer size chunks and add to the yogurt.
4. Marinate for 2 hours to overnight.
5. Grill, sauté, skewer, or bake until lightly browned and cooked through.
Cooking Tip: Grilling is a great way to cook the chicken. You don’t need to use skewers as long as the chucks are big enough to flip. Make sure to oil the grill before heating so the chicken doesn’t stick to the grill.
Serving Tip: Serve with grilled asparagus or green beans and salad and enjoy!
Nutrition (per serving)
Carbs 2.9 g
Fiber 0.4 g
Protein 4.9 g