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10 healthy protein food sources

Researched by Sarfraz
Updated on 1/1/2022


Protein is a very essential micronutrient that your body needs to perform well in terms of good health. This micronutrient is found in many foods. Protein is not present in the same value in every food. This is available in different values in different types of foods. There are many protein food sources from where you can get this nutrient.

Although your regular food may also contain this nutrient. If you are vegan then you may get it in small quantities as in vegan-friendly foods protein is less as compared to nonveg foods.

You may get surprised that this micronutrient is found in your body parts like muscles, skin, hair, and in many other parts. Your body gets help from protein to grow like your muscles, hairs are mostly protein.

The leg piece of chicken you eat is also a muscular part of that bird which has a high value of protein and you may even already like it to eat.

One thing I need to mention that without eating the required protein you may get some reasonable health issues. As your muscles and other body parts need protein to grow and perform well so a deficiency of this nutrient can put you in trouble.

Weak muscles, bones, and hair fall-like problems may increase with the deficiency of protein.

Most of these problems affect vegetarian people due to their strict diet behavior. Some vegetables and fruits also have protein but not as much as animal foods have. Eating both types of foods may provide you with benefit from many essential micronutrients.

Protein deficiency health issues

Here are some health issues that are associated with the deficiency of protein:

  • Muscles weakness, fatigue
  • Hair fall, Weak hair which broke easily
  • Ugly type brittle nails
  • Stomach bloating
  • The increased appetite (may cause you to gain weight)
  • Skin problems
  • Weak bones
  • Hypoproteinemia (associated risks cardiovascular problems, liver and kidney damage, Infections, pancreas damage, intestine problems, and more…)

It may be good for your health to eat different foods in the required quantity instead of avoiding some foods completely. Dietary requirements of protein differ from peoples to peoples. Athletes or those who participate in physical games may need more protein as compared to less active people.

The dietary recommendation for daily protein is 0.8g/day per kilogram of body weight for a regular person.

Protein is available in your daily foods. Some have high protein and some contain less or with no value. In this article, I will discuss 10 healthy protein food sources that are rich in protein in terms of quantity, value, and effectiveness for your body.

10 protein food sources

Here are 10 healthy protein food sources that may provide you noticeable health benefits:


Chicken is perhaps the top natural protein-rich food source that you can eat. It has more protein as compared to other foods. Chickens are raised extensively all over the world for the purpose of consuming. Chicken eggs are also included in the healthy protein food sources list.

There are two types of chicken that humans are raising, one country chicken and the second broiler chicken. Country chicken needs proper attention, time, and more financial help to raise whereas broiler chicken usually grows up fast and their expenditures are also low that is why consumption of broiler chicken is much high as compared to the country or nonbroiler chicken.

There are many misconceptions associated with chicken consumption, especially with broiler chicken. Some peoples think eating chicken may raise serious health problems. They mention broilers especially due to their fast growth, laziness, and heavyweight. There are peoples who claim that the broiler industry is feeding people toxic food in the form of chicken. But they are wrong. Here is why…

First eating chicken may not increase your health risks. It may increase when you eat high quantity fried, processed chicken. Fried and processed foods have health risks and science has proved it. (1) The main thing that matters is how you eat the chicken. Boiling and steaming the chicken without any extra OILY thing may provide you with health benefits instead of health damage.

It is the way of cooking that matters not just chicken

Second is that peoples say broiler chicken raise health risks. It is true that broiler is raised for only eating purposes. It grows fast. But these things may not matter much. The main thing that matters is how chicken is raised and what food chicken eat.

Country chickens also eat bad foods like it is common to see them eating insects, garbage, materials from gutters, and many other full-bacteria things. You may be surprised why people don't take that notice because they consider country chicken more natural as compared to broiler.

There are many strict rules associated with broiler chicken farming. Many countries have makes strict laws that prevent sellers to use illegal substances to raise chickens. If you raise both broiler and country chicken on an unhealthy diet then both will provide the same value if you eat them. The same value means the same benefits or disadvantages.

Broiler chicken has a high-fat ratio as compared to country chicken but most of these fats are removed during the slaughter process. The advantage of country chicken is its taste can come in different flavors because they are raised in houses or country areas where they may get natural foods.

Whereas most broiler chicken gets the same types of foods that the industry has issued for them maybe that is why broiler chickens have the same tastes.

You can eat both types of chicken. If you can afford more then go for country chicken, if you want a broiler then it is also good. Health standards that health authorities have set internationally are very high, believe that, if any serious health complications genuinely approve linked with the broiler chicken consumption they may force the broiler industry to shut down its business. Mainly it depends on your chicken cooking technique. Go for boiling, steaming instead of fry, or processed method.

Nutrition value of chicken

Here is the protein value of 170g chicken:

  • Calories-374
  • Fat 22g
  • Protein 40g
  • Carbs 0.1g
  • Potassium 346mg
  • Cholesterol 160mg


Fish is another protein food source that you can get easily from the market or from open water. There is a lot of competition between fish and chicken. These two animals are eaten by humans on large scales. Some people like chicken while some likes fish to eat. Nowadays like chicken fish is also being raised in farms for human consumption.

Tuna fish may provide you more health benefits as compared to chicken because it has less cholesterol and sodium value and high potassium value

Fish has high-quality protein which may provide you with many health benefits. Some peoples like to eat fish as they think it is natural food as compared to chicken especially broiler chicken but they may need to know that nowadays large numbers of fish comes from the farms where peoples fed them mostly human-made foods. Just like chicken, a wild or open water fish comes with a high-quality taste.

There are large types of fish that peoples eat like Tuna, salmon, trout, Mahi-Mahi, Sardines, which are a few examples. Here I will mention only the nutrition value of your favorite Tuna fish:

Nutrition value of tuna fish

  • Calories-248
  • Fat 1.1g
  • Protein 55g
  • Cholesterol 88mg
  • Sodium 108 mg
  • Potassium 1000 mg

Chicken eggs

Here comes a chicken-related topic again. Eggs of chicken are being eaten worldwide. Peoples also consume other animal eggs but they mostly consume chicken eggs. There are many health benefits of chicken and it is the pure form of protein that you can get. Although its yolk parts come with some cholesterol value but eating it less may not give any health risks to the healthy person.

Eggs white are the pure form of protein. This part of the egg has few calories and all of these come from protein. That is why athletes especially bodybuilders eat dozens of eggs white daily to get benefits from the high-value protein. You may don't need to eat a lot of eggs like them because eating many eggs at once may cause trouble for you. If you eat them in large quantities the first time. You may feel extra inner heat and your urine may smell egg-like for a couple of days.

There are a lot of farms where chickens are being raised for the purpose of eggs. Chickens are producing billions of eggs for billions of people who like to eat them during their mealtime, especially at breakfast.

Nutrition value of eggs

A large 50 g egg has:

  • Calories-72
  • Fat 4.8g
  • Protein 6.3g
  • Carbs 0.4g
  • Cholesterol 186mg
  • Potassium 69mg
  • Sodium 71mg

Greek yogurt

Animal protein has high quality as compared to other protein sources. Greek yogurt is also produced from the milk of cows, buffalos, sheep, etc. Most peoples drink the milk of cows and buffalos. In Europe and United States peoples mostly consume cow milk and in some Asian countries, people like buffalo milk.

Greek yogurt is produced after removing the whey liquid from the regular yogurt. It is more thick and creamy as compared to common yogurt. Basically, it is due to the removal of whey liquid that causes the thick yogurt parts to left behind.

This yogurt has more protein as compared to regular yogurt and it also more costly than regular yogurt. In 2012 greek yogurt market value in the United States was $4.1 billion.

Western peoples like this greek yogurt while most Asian peoples prefer regular yogurt

Nutrition value of greek yogurt

255 g of greek yogurt has:

  • Calories-150
  • Fat 1g
  • Protein 25.5g
  • Cholesterol 12.8mg
  • Sodium 91.5mg
  • Potassium 360mg
  • Carbs 9.1g
  • Sugar 8.3g

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You can get high-quality protein by eating beef. Beef is a type of meat which peoples get by slaughtering the cattle. Just like chickens, cattle are also raised for the purpose of consumption. According to history, our ancestors used to hunt animals to eat them. Beef also has high-quality protein with other essential nutrients.

Just like chicken, you may get health risks if you eat fried or processed beef too much. As it has a high-fat value of beef may increase after you fry them. Just I mention boiling or steaming without adding extra oil is the best way to cook chicken and beef.

According to the data United States was no. 1 in the production of beef with 12.22 million tons of beef in 2018. The USA was followed by Brazil and China. You may be surprised after knowing that the USA is not the largest exporter of beef but it is Australia that is exporting beef in large quantities to other countries. Australian sheep are famous all around the world due to their taste and market value.

Nutrition value of beef

170g beef nutrition value is:

  • Calories-494
  • Fat 34g
  • Protein 44g
  • Cholesterol 148mg
  • Sodium 108mg
  • Potassium 542mg

Peanut butter

Peanut butter gives you the same nutrition value as the dry fruit “peanuts” give. It is produced from peanuts. Peanut butter is tasty and you can get it even in the off-season of peanuts.

The peanut butter benefits over regular peanut are, you can eat it with other foods. Like you can add it in a milkshake, protein shake, whey protein, or in your bread or sandwiches. Moreover, it is available in every notable market the whole year.

Peanut butter has high calories. It also has a high value in protein that is why most athletes like to add this with other foods. Like Ronnie Coleman and Arnold, both were filmed while adding a peanut butter spoon in their protein shakes.

Due to high fats, you may need to eat peanut butter in a limited quantity. It is full of calories from fat, carbs, and protein. 80 g peanut butter has 470 calories.

Home-made peanut butter is best as it looks natural due to no presence of extra processing.

Here is the way how you can make peanut butter at home:

  1. Take 2 cups dry roast peanuts
  2. Put them in a food processor and add 1 tablespoon honey or sugar
  3. Turn the power on and let the food processor work
  4. After 5 minutes switch off the power
  5. Check the mixture if it has turn into a thick liquid
  6. Check the mixture with a spoon to check any hard particle
  7. Your peanut butter is read
  8. You can put it in the fridge now

Nutrition value of peanut butter

80 g peanut butter has:

  • Calories-470
  • Fat 40g
  • Protein 17.5g
  • Sodium 380mg
  • Fiber 4.5g
  • Carbs 19
  • Cholesterol 0
  • Potassium 472.5mg


Chickpeas are dry seeds that are being cultivated on millions of hectares. Humans are cultivating chickpeas from their early ages. The oldest belongings of chickpeas seeds were found in Egypt according to experts these remains are approximately 7500 years old.

Chickpeas are rich in protein. It also contains other nutrients like fiber, potassium, vitamins A, C, calcium, and iron in reasonable quantity. These dry seeds come with high calories and most of these calories come from carbs, protein, sugar, fiber, and from fats.

There are many types of chickpeas seeds that we eat. Like Egyptian, Bengal is one of its examples. India is the largest producer of chickpeas who adds a 70 percent share in the worldwide production of this protein-rich food.

There are many ways to eat it. You can roast them or cook them. Chickpeas flour is also used in making many food products. This dry food is also rich in iron which is present in high quantity. If you check the nutrition values of common foods then you may get surprised that iron is present in low quantities in most foods. Whereas chickpeas have a high value of iron. 100 grams of chickpeas may add 24 percent value to your daily iron recommendation.

Nutrition value of chickpeas

100gram raw chickpeas have:

  • Calories-378
  • Fat 6g
  • Protein 20g
  • Carbs 63 g
  • Iron 24 percent of the recommended value
  • Potassium 718mg
  • Sodium 24mg
  • Sugar 10.5 g
  • Fiber 12g


Lentils are also dry seeds that are used as the source of food. These seeds grow on the plants. There are many ways to eat them. Lentils have many types each of them has its own taste and value. You may need to be careful as eating lentils may cause some health troubles.

Nutrition value of red lentils

These seeds are full of protein. 192 g of raw dry lentils has 676 calories with 47g of protein.

  • Calories-676
  • Fat 2g
  • Protein 47g
  • Fiber 21g
  • Carbs 122g
  • Potassium 1300g
  • Sodium 12mg
  • Cholesterol 0g


Milk is a liquid product that is produced in the bodies of female mammals. Humans and other mammels babies start the consumption of milk at an early age.

Babies only drink the milk of his/her mother. That is why milk has great value in human life because it helps them to grow.

Buffalo milk has a high protein and fat ratio as compared to cow milk but the benefits of cow milk are more than buffalo milk. Cow milk is also more suitable for babies.

Milk is a good source of protein. This liquid food is used in the making of many other foods like yogurt, bakery items, whey, and many more.

Nutrition value of milk

244g milk can provide you 8g of natural protein

  • Calories-133
  • Fat 2.4g
  • Protein 8g
  • Carbs 12g
  • Sugar 13 g
  • Sodium 107mg
  • Cholesterol 12mg

Whey protein supplements

Whey is the product left after making the cheese. When you curdled the milk and after the straining process the liquid which left that is called whey. Then this liquid can be turned into powder form which is famously known as whey protein or protein supplement.

Commercially whey is being produced with the usage of modern plants and machinery. Annually millions of liters of milk are being used just for the purpose of making whey protein. Whey protein supplements come with different tastes and values. Usually, a scoop is used for the measurement of whey powder.

Most famous whey protein supplement which is available in the market has 24g protein value per scoop.

  4. Hanna Fjeldheim Dale, Lise Madsen, Gülen Arslan Lied, Fish–derived proteins and their potential to improve human, health, Nutrition Reviews, Volume 77, Issue 8, August 2019, Pages 572–583,
  7. "Greek yogurt on a marathon-like growth spur"Wall Street Journal. Associated Press. 22 January 2012.
  9. Ritchie, Hannah; Roser, Max (25 August 2017). "Meat and Dairy Production"Our World in Data
  10. Top Beef Exporting Countries"World's Top Exports. 1 April 2020.
  13. Advances in Agronomy. Elsevier. 2001. ISBN 978-0080543994. Retrieved 26 February 2018 – via Google Books
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