Protein is essential to our bodies and can be a tremendous aid on your quest to lose weight. Eating plenty of protein while dieting (or any time) will help keep your body from burning muscle tissue instead of fat. Also, it helps build and preserve lean muscle tissue. If eaten properly, protein can be your best ally when dieting.
Studies have shown that people eating a diet high in protein typically burn more fat than those eating a low-protein diet. One reason this occurs is because of the thermic effect. The thermic effect is the energy our body uses to consume and process food. Calories are burned during the process. Since protein requires more energy to digest, more calories are burned in the process and less fat is stored in the body. On the other hand, carbohydrates and dietary fat are much easier to digest, but they are quickly turned to body fat and few calories are burned.