The Top 4 Protein Sources May Surprise You

Have you been relying on traditional sources of protein in your meals? Then you may be surprised by these findings from our poll of six dietitians. We asked them to name their favorite sources of protein, and here are the ones they endorse:

1. Beans and legumes

Beans and legumes — meaning all types of dried beans, split peas and lentils —garnered the most votes.

“Beans and legumes are fiber-rich nutrient powerhouses and an excellent source of protein,” says Anna Taylor, MS, RD, LD. “One serving (½ cup cooked) of beans provides about 7 grams of protein, the same as 1 ounce of meat.”

2. Wild salmon

Wild salmon is the perfect source of lean protein and provides incredible benefits because of its anti-inflammatory fats,” says Brigid Titgemeier, MS, RDN, LD.

Three ounces contain nearly 17 grams of protein and provide a key nutrient that your body can’t make on its own: omega-3 fat.

“Studies have proven that the high omega-3 fatty acid content in wild salmon helps to lower triglycerides and blood pressure, and decrease platelet aggregation (stickiness),” says Julia Zumpano, RD, LD.