The Tinned Protein Substitution Diet

This short article is about how you can easily lose a few of those extra pounds without making any large changes to your diet or going hungry. I first started to use the tinned protein substitution method of weight loss or weight control in my 20’s when I was at the peak of my fitness and I needed to be in top condition due to my employment in the military, however, this simple diet trick can work at any age for whatever motivation.

In fact, I have recently started using this diet trick again (just to shed a few unwanted kilos from my “middle-aging” waistline) and as I described it to my wife the other day it reminded and inspired me to share the technique here online.

tinned protein substitution diet

Know how food affects your body

Most savvy foodies and health conscious people understand the makeup of food and how the general compounds like carbs (simple and complex), proteins, fats, etc are used and processed differently by the human body. If you don’t know these nutrition basics about food and how your body reacts differently to certain food groups then I recommend you do some research to get a better understanding about what you’re eating – it’s not hard.  

The tinned protein substitution diet uses the old principle that protein is less likely to be processed and stored on your body as fat than carbs because it takes longer to digest and is used differently by the body.

The substitution part is about replacing one high carbohydrate portion of food you would normally eat every day with a tinned protein instead. For example, instead of eating a sandwich, bread roll, hot chips, or rice for lunch, have a small can of tuna or some other high protein food like other fish, chicken, or beans etc. 

In theory (and I’ve found in practice) by replacing just one daily carb you’d normally eat with a protein leads to safe and gradual weight loss. Of course, for this to work a person using this substitution of carbs for protein can’t be changing their overall diet suddenly and increasing their overall calorie intake as this will be counterproductive.    

Let’s quickly explore the sandwich vs canned tuna example further: In a sandwich just the two normal slices of white bread add up to 132 calories and the 100 gram can of tuna is 116 calories; however, it’s not really the amount of calories that I want to concentrate on it is what the food consists of that’s important.

The bread alone (without butter or the inside of the sandwich) is made up of 26 grams of carbs with only 4 grams of protein and the tuna has 0 carbs with 25 grams of protein. Let’s not get too pedantic with the maths because I hate calorie counting but this illustrates how the two common food groups are roughly the same in calories but completely different in protein and carb makeup.     

Both foods when consumed should give similar feelings of fullness satisfaction and both foods will sustain the body throughout the day; however, the tuna will less likely be turned into fat and more likely be used up by the body which means no weight gain.  

Why tinned protein?

So why tinned protein and why not good lean protein you make and cook yourself? Well, often it’s the time poor situations when we tend to overeat on carbs out of convenience. It’s easy to make a sandwich or buy a bucket of hot chips on our lunch break but it’s not always practical to find or cook up a lean piece of beef or chicken.

Therefore, tinned protein is the perfect solution and realistic in modern times when you’re on a quick work break or just couldn’t be bothered making a mess and cooking up something. Simply buy the cans in bulk and have them on hand as your cheap and easy carb substitution. For a weight loss plan to be successful is must be easy to do otherwise it won't get done.

Here’s some more random pluses/points off the top of my head:

  • Protein, like a small 95 gram tin of tuna, costs less than a $ and is surprisingly filling! These days there are many different flavour infused tinned fish varieties to choose from, which still doesn’t compromise the protein levels, therefore, it shouldn’t be boring taste wise.
  • If you don’t like fish try beans or nuts. You can’t have a tin of nuts (not commonly anyway) but you can have a small container of nuts prepared quite fast and easily.
  • Most proteins like fish, beans, and nuts are full of vitamins, minerals, and essential oils.  
  • If you’re an active person eating a little more protein is good for your muscles and will aid in recovery between sessions (however, don’t go silly and only eat protein because that’s not healthy).

How many pounds can this carb replacement diet lose?

So how much weight could you possibly lose with this tinned protein substitution diet? Well, I’ve lost several kilograms more than once by following this method of carb replacement so I’d be surprised if it didn’t work favourably for anyone who tried it over a fair time frame.  

Regardless, I’m not writing this to convince you nor do I promise a wonder solution to weight loss as this is just a simple explanation of a technique that happens to work for me and will probably work for most others if they choose to give it a go.

After all, maintaining a healthy body weight is much more than dieting and if you are doing most of the right things already a simple diet replacement trick like my tinned protein substitution might be all that’s needed to reveal those rippled abs.

If you’d like to discuss this article you can make a comment below or better still join our forum and we can chat as much as you like about healthy living and lifestyle.

Mark Valencia – Editor SSM

Respect your body and keep it healthy through regular exercise…     



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