Protein is an important part of a healthy diet, but are you consuming enough? The general recommendation for daily protein intake is about 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, the amount of protein needed varies from person to person and depends on factors such as age, weight, activity level, and gender. To achieve these protein goals, you could simply add more meat and legumes to your diet, but lately people are taking a more caffeinated route to protein-consuming success, adding protein into their daily routine with protein coffee or “proffee.” .
What is proffee?
Proffee is exactly what it sounds like: protein and coffee. “Proffee is a nutrient-dense upgrade from your daily coffee routine,” says Carissa Galloway, a registered dietitian and personal trainer. “Your typical coffee latte is filled with empty calories and sugar, providing little to no nutritional value. If you plan on drinking coffee either way, you might as well be sneaking in some extra health benefits.”
The popularity of the proffee
Not only is Galloway a proponent of protein coffee, but many TikTok users have posted videos on the platform showcasing their proffee recipes and morning drinks. The hashtag #proffee has garnered over 35 million views on the app and has received a lot of attention from people in the bariatric (weight loss surgery) community and others on a weight loss journey.
Lifestyle and beauty influencer Chloe Parsons says she came across proffees on YouTube when “what I eat in a day” videos were popular. “I’ve seen some people add protein to their coffee and decided to give it a try myself,” says Parsons. “Once I did it, there was no going back.”
On a recent TikTok, Parsons shared with his 200,000+ followers a recipe for his signature protein coffee, technically an iced Americano, which he brews every morning.
The recipe includes two shots of espresso, cold water, ice, three bites of a vanilla protein shake, and some sugar-free cream.
“I drink proffee every single morning,” Parson tells Yahoo Life. “I’m not always hungry as soon as I wake up, so it’s the perfect in-between before brunch or an early lunch.”
Other TikTok users say they’ve found proffee extremely helpful in keeping them full and satisfied, where a regular cup of joe would leave them craving for more.
Liza Saunders, who shares her 110-pound weight loss on TikTok, drinks proffee as a way to keep her on track each morning. “Protein is needed to keep me full throughout the day. It also stimulates muscle growth and enhances fat burning,” says Saunders. “Simply swapping in my coffee from creamer to protein is a sustainable swap that has kept me on track for weight loss.”
One of Saunders’ favorite proffee recipes includes a salted caramel flavored protein shake made by Fairlife Nutrition Plan, dark roast coffee, Starbucks caramel syrup, and a dash of caramel. He says the great thing about proffee is that it’s completely customizable—there’s no one-size-fits-all recipe—so whether you opt for caffeinated or decaf, creamer or no creamer, the choices are up to you.
What to know about the prophet
While proffee can help keep you fuller for longer, it shouldn’t be used as a meal replacement.
“Proffee is not a meal replacement,” warns Galloway, who spoke to Yahoo Life as part of his work to promote Premier Protein. “I like to think of it as a nutritional tool, best used as part of a well-balanced diet.”
Galloway adds that you’ll want to check with your doctor before making any significant changes to your diet, particularly for those with kidney problems who typically need to limit their protein intake, and pregnant or nursing people who it is recommended to limit the consumption of caffeine.
“When adding coffee to your diet, keep in mind the amount of coffee you drink in a day, and try to limit your coffee intake to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day, or about four cups,” says Galloway.
As with any drink, you may not like it the first time you try it. If so, don’t give up. Keep exploring with different recipes and flavor options until you find a variation that works for you.
“Enjoy it,” says Saunders. “Create your own proffee recipes [based on] drinks you already know and love, and by doing so you don’t even realize you’ve added protein, yet you get all the benefits.”
Looking to try proffee yourself? Here is a recipe to help you get started.
Iced almond biscuit Vanilla Latte
Courtesy of Premier Protein
Premier Protein High Protein Vanilla Shake (or vanilla protein shake of your choice)
1 tablespoon of Jot Coffee Concentrate (or coffee concentrate of your choice)
¼ teaspoon almond extract
2 drops butter extract (optional)
1 teaspoon sugar-free vanilla syrup
Just add the ingredients and mix. You can make it hot or iced.
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