The Best, Low-Fat Paleo Protein Sources (Animal-Based)
1. Lean Beef
With lean beef, you are consuming less fat and more protein. One three-ounce portion of lean beef contains around 23 grams of protein, which makes it an excellent source of protein for you to enjoy.
2. Lean Poultry
With more than 50 grams of protein in one serving of boneless, skinless chicken breast, that particular piece of poultry is the way to go. That said, with the growing popularity of poultry and especially the free range movement, this particular protein source should be relatively easy to find and will undoubtedly be very reasonably priced.
3. Lean Pork
With 26 grams of protein in one four-ounce serving of lean pork, this makes an excellent choice for not only protein consumption but also for a paleo diet. Free range pork and grass fed pork is much harder to come by than free range chicken, but if you look in the right places you should be able to find it.
4. Fresh Fish and Shellfish
Fresh fish is far better than canned fish, there is absolutely no salt added to them when they are fresh. One serving of fish and shellfish contain anywhere from 7 to 29 grams of protein depending upon what specific type of fish you are eating. As you can tell from the large range of protein totals, there are quite a few good options and several bad choices.
5. Lean Nitrate Free Bacon
Nitrates tend to increase the sodium level and some anecdotal evidence has linked nitrates to cancer. One serving of lean bacon provides around 6 grams of protein. While this isn’t optimal for those who are trying to consume large quantities of protein, it certainly can help to make a fantastic dinner.
Eggs are an acceptable source of protein on a paleo diet. Due to the fat content of the egg yolks, you should probably try to limit yourself to no more than 6 eggs per week according to some nutritionists. That said, eggs do contain approximately 6 grams of protein.
If you’re anything like me, you will remember those fantastic Looney Toons cartoons where Elmer Fudd was always trying to get Bugs Bunny. We always loved to watch those when we were growing up. Well, surprisingly, rabbit meat actually is a fantastic paleo protein source. One 3.5 ounce serving of rabbit meat contains approximately 27 grams of protein. When caught wild or free range, these rabbits fit perfectly into the paleo diet.
One 3-ounce serving of roasted goat meat contains 23 grams of protein. Much like rabbit, pork, and beef, these are among the optimal choices for protein intake while doing the paleo diet. While these meats only contain around half the protein of a boneless, skinless chicken breast, they are excellent choices for those who prefer red meats or alternative white meats.
In the 90’s and early 2000’s, there was an exquisite boom in Ostrich and Emu meat. Outside of certain specialty stores or certain direct from the farm resources, these may be extremely difficult to find. While they may be difficult to find and even perhaps a dying industry, one 3 ounce serving of Emu contains approximately 27 grams of protein. This serving makes for an excellent substitute for many of the other items that have been discussed so far.
Many of you may be squeamish about this, but for the Aussies out there, Kangaroo meat is an outstanding source of protein that falls perfectly within the paleo diet. One serving of protein contains around 23 grams of protein. As I said, this may make some of us squeamish, but it is rumored that Kangaroo, while an acquired taste, is just like any other game meat.
Deer meat, commonly referred to as venison, contains 22 grams of protein in a simple three-ounce serving. This is an acceptable protein for a paleo diet. It is very commonly hunted in the wild in the United States and while we don’t necessarily think of it as being a good food on a diet, it is much leaner than beef usually is because it is primarily grass fed and is almost always free range.
12. Dairy Products
One serving size container of yogurt contains approximately 17 grams of protein. A glass of milk and a slice of cheese each contains around 7 or 8 grams of protein. These are acceptable on a paleo diet. That said, several experts recommend that you stop all dairy intake for at least 1 month when you first start the paleo diet. They advise that you then try dairy at the end of that month.
The reason this is recommended is because many people are lactose intolerant and in some cases the body has adjusted to the lactose in dairy products to remove that intolerance. If you find that you are lactose intolerant after giving your body a month or more to adjust to not having dairy regularly, it is advisable that you not have dairy products while on the paleo diet.