The Truth About 30g Protein Within 30 Minutes Of Waking

5 ways to get 30 grams of proteinHow well are you able to get 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking?

One of the main supplemental rules that Tim Ferriss included in The 4 Hour Body was to get 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking.

A lot of people refer to it on forums, but do you even know where this “30 in 30” came from? He mentions it in the book in an example of his father, who saw a 23 lb weight loss in 2 months, but only 6 of it in the second month. When he started consuming 30g protein 30 within 30 minutes of waking “to restart fat-loss”, he dropped another 19 lbs in one month.

Tweet this: Tim Ferriss’ dad dramatically restarted fat loss by eating 30g protein w/in 30 min of waking. Wanna try?

He makes four recommendations for getting sufficient protein in the morning:

  1. Eat at least 40% of your breakfast calories as protein
  2. Do it with two or three whole eggs (each egg has about 6g protein)
  3. If you can’t handle the eggs, use something like turkey bacon, organic pork bacon or sausage, or cottage cheese
  4. The third option is to use a protein shake with water

Here’s why, according to the book:
1. Eating protein first decreases your white carbohydrate cravings, which in the morning aren’t usually ideal carbs. Do you often crave a bagel, toast, or donuts in the morning? Wouldn’t it be great to kick that habit?

2. While you sleep, your body is doing a ton of maintenance, and part of that means it dips into your fat stores. When you give your body sugar in the morning, it’ll burn the sugar. I don’t know about you, but I prefer continued fat loss.

Want help planning your slow-carb meals? I’ve got months worth of meal plans ready for you over in my slow-carb meal planner. Click here to read more!

What does 30 grams look like?

You can do things a couple different ways:

  • 5 whole, large eggs gives you 30g
  • Generally, about 150g of sausage will give you 30g protein
  • Tim also discusses using cottage cheese, and a cup gets you close to 30g protein
  • 3-4 oz of tuna is around 30g protein
  • 1.5 c of lentils is 30g protein

All of those, individually, are slow-carb compliant foods. So you could do something like 3 eggs, 50g sausage, and throw in some spinach for good measure and you’ll be getting 30g protein for breakfast. It’s not really as difficult as we want to make it sometimes.

The protein shake option

That said, an amazing number of people ask about protein shakes. I guess it’s because we’re always in a hurry and have somewhere to go. There’s a big problem I have with protein shakes though:

Most of them really suck.

They’re full of soy (which isn’t as good as you’ve been told), they’ve got a bunch of fillers, artificial ingredients, or they’re specifically for building muscle. None of that is what we want.

Because so many people can’t seem to stomach real food in the morning, or they find it really hard to prepare and consume food within 30 minutes, and because so many people have asked, I’ve done some research looking for one that doesn’t.

I have a second reason too. I get up around 5am to do side work before going to my real job. I try to be as quiet as possible, and I usually don’t feel hungry that early anyway. So I wanted to try a protein shake as soon as I wake up, and then I’ll have a normal breakfast with my family or when I go to work.

The one I’ve settled on is Mark Sisson’s Primal Fuel.

Why I picked Primal Fuel

I’ve been following Mark’s stuff for a long time, and anyone following me on Twitter will usually see a few of his posts tweeted out. The guy is 60 and looks like he’s 28. It’s crazy. He’s been in nutrition for something like 20 years, and all of the products he’s created were first created to fill a need he had. I trust the ingredients he uses because, quite frankly, he uses the supplements himself.

I also know he created the protein shake specifically not for bulking up, only quickly getting an appropriate amount of protein. He didn’t create it for fat loss in the same sense as a diet meal replacement shake, but the formula he uses helps promote fat loss.

Even though it’s sweet, it’s designed to help kick sugar cravings. If you look at other shakes, like Myoplex, they’re using corn syrup (not sure if it’s HFCS or not) for sweetener. Primal Fuel uses Stevia as well as some sucrose. If that bothers you, remember that the Myoplex shake Tim recommends has 20g carbs. Primal Fuel has 11g.

Mark is also very adamant about not drinking calories, which is one of the slow-carb rules. So I know Primal Fuel wasn’t designed to just be mindless calories. It uses whey protein isolate (the best form you can get) and coconut milk to get a really great combination of protein and fat that’s going to help promote fat loss.

One warning about protein shakes

Whatever you do, don’t use protein shakes as a “diet” tool. Slim fast doesn’t work, and neither will this if it’s how you’re losing weight. As a supplement, it’s fine. One a day at the right time will go a long way to get you through to your next meal or take the edge off a serious sugar craving.

How easy is it looking now?

Now that you’ve considered what 30g protein in the morning looks like and a few different ways to get it, are you going to give it a try? Whether it’s through eating eggs and sausage or drinking a protein shake, it’s definitely worth it to try, especially if you’re in a plateau that you want to bust.

What’s your perfect slow-carb breakfast? Tell me in the comments!

Cottage Cheese photo used under Attribution-ShareAlike License

(Disclosure: The links to Primal Fuel in this post are affiliate links, which means I get a small commission if you purchase it. It doesn’t increase the price to you, but it helps me keep the lights on over here. I appreciate your support!)

Try out Primal Fuel!

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  1. 1/2 cup egg whites + 2 whole eggs + 1 cup chopped spinach + 1 Tbsp crushed red pepper. (microwave 5 minutes).
    3-4 slices of turkey bacon (microwave 90 seconds).
    1/2 cup black beans. (microwave 30 seconds)
    1 mug of yerba mate or Morning Thunder tea.
    35-40 grams of protein.

  2. I find the ’30 in 30′ rule one of the hardest things about the diet, especially when I work early and am not that hungry. It seems like an awful lot to eat and I never know if I actually make the quota. Based on your post though, I think I’m doing OK.

    I do like the idea about protein shakes to deal with the ’30 in 30′ rule. Do you think it would be good to do this, then exercise, then have breakfast in the morning?

    • Hey Mario,
      I have no personal experience with the order you’re talking about, but from what I’ve heard from Mark Sisson and Jason Seib, that doesn’t sound like a problem. I heard a physician this morning talk about whey isolate protein being a good one to take before working out because it’s easily digestible so your body can use it during the exercise. I’d say it’s definitely worth experimenting with. I’d love to hear how you fare after trying it out!


  3. I keep a variety of veggies (sweet peppers, jalapenos, onions, celery, mushrooms, spinach and maybe some broccoli) chopped finely and kept in jars in the frig so they’re readily available to put in the skillet w/ a little olive oil, saute for a few minutes then plop my eggs on top and kinda stir around. It’s been a lifesaver for me, who’s not to wild about eggs all the time either – but the veggies overtake the egg taste. And I’ve adopted my husband’s love for spiciness in foods and that’s also a plus. This is a whole new way of eating for me, even tho’ I’ve always tried to keep carbs low (obviously not enough) and I love it and I’m losing a little each week. Thanks for all the ideas.

  4. Catherine says

    I would be very interested in hearing what you determine on the significance of the 30 in 30 rule. I love this diet and feel great when I follow it BUT my problem is I get up early, roll out of bed and go straight into an hour of exercise and can’t cram 30 grams of protein into my stomach and straight to a work out. I have tried to work exercise in later but it just doesn’t fit into my lifestyle. I have been away from slow carb for a while and want to begin it again but the morning protein dilemma keeps messing me up.

    • Great question, Catherine. I’m going to answer it in an upcoming post, but to quickly answer you, don’t sweat it. πŸ˜‰ Stay tuned for more.

      • Did you ever answer this questions in more detail? I experience the same issue with heading out of the house to a 5:30 am workout!

      • Same here! Although I love breakfast and I have no trouble eating at any time. But before workouts just does not work for me…

  5. There has also been a lot of research in the past on how exercising first thing in the morning on a empty stomach is the best for fat loss. Do you have an opinion on this and which technique is better for fat loss, consuming 30 g of protein first thing in the morning or exercising first thing in the morning on an empty stomach? clearly you can’t do both. Thanks!

    • Hey Kyle,

      A way to get both is to use a protein shake. πŸ™‚

      They’re two ways to skin a cat. So IF you want to follow the 30 in 30, here are some ways to do it. If you prefer some intermittent fasting or just like to work out in a fasted state, that’s totally fine too. Both are body hacks and both will give you good results.


  6. Cottage cheese? I read that section as well. I thought no dairy? I love cottage cheese, so how could this be an ok food?

    • Hey Shawn,

      He mentioned full-fat cottage cheese as an OK option (not an ideal one) if you want some protein other than from eggs. It’s different from other cheese and yogurt because of how it’s made. I need to look up the specifics and maybe write a post about it.


  7. Catherine Bell says

    I don’t like full or even partial fat cottage cheese but love no fat cottage cheese with vinegar ( !! ). Is that ok, and if so, how many times a day can I use it for a meal? I am handicapped so it is difficult for me to do most of these recipes, but Ido like cottage cheese. Thank you!

    • Hey Catherine,

      Well – one of the best parts about cottage cheese is the milkfat. πŸ™‚ But if you can’t handle the fatted stuff, fat-free would still get you some protein. I would probably not even use it every day, though, but your mileage may vary. Try it as much as you’d like first, and then if you don’t see results start pulling it out.


  8. The ingredients in these shakes are okay, except the Maltodextrin. It’s a filler, and when I researched what it was, it’s in everything and is terrible to put into your body. People really need to research ingredients.

    • Hey Pamela,

      You’d be surprised how much research Mark Sisson does for his products. He’s definitely not only in it for the money. Sure, he makes money, but he wants to have the best products out there. I’m certain he and his team spend a lot of time researching what goes into them.

      That said, I’m going to ask about maltodextrin to see why they decided to use it.


  9. Primal Fuel sounds like crap. Maltodextrin is a total junk filler made from corn that at best is not helpful, and more likely bad for you. And sucrose?? Seriously, he just dumped some straight table sugar in and then tries to justify it, how disappointing. Why not just stick with the stevia as a sweetener? Also, since he does not mention the source of the dairy this is made from, I’m going to assume it is from grain-fed, non-organic CAFO cows. Bleargh.

    • Hey Cynthia,

      Thanks for those points – I’m going to send an email and ask about them. In the mean time, do you know of a better protein shake you can share with us?

      Regarding the whey, I know Mark is very particular about where he sources his own meat from, so I’m confident in the source of the whey protein in the shake.

      I checked out the Primal Fuel website, and here’s what it says about sucrose:

      A: Straight protein powder doesn’t taste very good, even when blended with coconut milk. It needs flavors and sweeteners to make it palatable. We didn’t want to use artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup or even straight fructose, so we chose to use two grams of evaporated cane juice (also known as sucrose) per serving as a sweetener, as well as a little natural stevia. Two grams is half a teaspoon and represents eight calories. We simply went with the common name sucrose instead of evaporated cane juice. And yes, Grok would have definitely eaten evaporated cane juice when he came across some.

      So it’s not table sugar, it’s cane juice. Like I mentioned in the post, though, Mark created this for his own health and decided to market it to a broader audience. He’s not in the business of selling/feeding crap to the people who trust him; he wants to make people healthier. I understand why you have a problem with sucrose, and that’s fine. The only non-calorie sweetener that exists naturally (the only non-calorie sweetener that I’d even promote myself) is Stevia, so maybe there’s a shake somewhere that uses it.


      • David Knowles says

        There is very little difference between cane sugar and white table sugar – both are sucrose. Sucrose has to be converted to glucose before the body can use it.
        Did you ever post the results of your “30 grams of protein…” test.
        One problem with Tim Ferris is his un-scientific approach. He doesn’t test his claims with anything near a double blind study. It’s all “well this person did this, and that person did that” but no control group and nothing about the important variable such as age, gender or metabolism.
        Thanks for posting your views on diet.

  10. I sent an email to Primal Nutrition to ask about maltodextrin, sucrose, and the whey protein. Here’s what they told me:

    There are 2 grams of maltodextrin from cassava root in a serving of Primal Fuel and it comes from the raw coconut powder we use. It is pure glucose and one of the easiest ways to get glucose into the blood stream. The supplier of the coconut powder uses this because it’s the safest natural anti-coagulant and you can’t buy coconut milk without it.

    Straight protein powder isn’t palatable so we did have to add evaporated cane juice as a sweetener. We also use a little bit of stevia. Evaporated cane juice is very primal (i.e., a naturally-occurring food) and it accounts for eight calories per serving of Primal Fuel. This was our alternative to artificial sweeteners.

    The whey protein we use is a whey protein isolate which is microfiltered down to 95% protein. We did this to make the product virtually lactose-free, carbohydrate-free, and fat-free. The micro filtration does end up making the source of the whey protein irrelevant.

  11. Hey, thanks for a very informative post that is honest and is you ‘thinking out loud’. I have tried to do my own research (but you know how confusing that can get when trying to get an answer on the Internet). I’ve noticed that nobody doing slow carb talks about baked beans – I’m presuming they are a good source of protein (6grams /100g) but with that you have the extra carbs and sugar, am I correct in saying that baked beans would not be a good choice for slow carb ? Cheers.

  12. This is cheap, easy, tastes great in the morning and keeps you going for hours. Get good quality pure whey protein isolate in bulk (no additives or sweeteners). Spot price on this varies, but around $12.00/lb (Nutra Bio is a good source). Here’s my morning shake. 1 Scoop protein powder as above, 2 raw organic (know your source) eggs, 2 heaping Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, scant 1/4 teaspoon stevia powder ( I use Trader Joe’s organic) and a splash of vanilla extract (Costco). Put in blender at slowest speed with some water; add ice to taste (I use about 5 ounces).

    • Thanks for the recipe, Bob! The raw eggs makes me queasy, but I’m sure that with the rest of it you only notice it as something creamy rather than eggy. Folks, I can’t stress enough to check the labels for your protein powders. I get companies asking me to recommend their products all the time, and you’d be surprised at what a “simple” “protein” shake has in it.


      • Hi Jason. You can’t taste “egg” at all. If you didn’t tell a person that’s what it is, they would never know. I see I left out the coconut milk 2 Tablespoons (or Heavy cream taste better but not as good for you). This is a vital part of the drink.

        • Bob, if I can get this made without my wife seeing it (she’s pregnant and gets grossed out easily – she doesn’t even let me kiss her if I’m drinking a fatty coffee), I’m going to try it. πŸ˜‰


          • Jason, did you get a chance to try Bob’s mix? Also, the primal fuel shake says 20g of protein per serving. I assume you are using 1.5 servings to get to the recommended 30g for breakfast? Thanks.

          • Hey Trent,

            No, I didn’t try Bob’s mix. And yeah, I usually do heaping tablespoons, so I’m getting more than 20g when I use it.


  13. Thanks for your posts, I have learned a lot from you! Breakfast, specifically 30 in 30 is the hardest part of SCD for me. Sometimes I wake up at 5am (or 3am or 4 am) and usually I will go back to sleep, but sometimes after laying there an hour, I realize I am not going to get back to sleep, so I get up. I feel like when that happens I have already blown the 30 in 30. I am losing weight, but slowly. I am still trying to grasp all the details and tho I have been trying to ‘do’ the diet for two weeks, the more I learn the more I feel like I really haven’t done it ‘right’ so far.

    On another note, Would Scotch eggs be OK if you used either no breading or used coconut flour or Almond flour as a substitute?

    • Hey Rebecca,

      Don’t sweat the 30 in 30 thing too much. It’s a guideline, and frankly I think it’s more useful as a plateau breaker than something to worry about ALL the time. If you’re stressing about it, that’s probably worse than not getting it exactly “right”.

      One of the main points that Tim Ferriss makes in his book is that this is something to test and tweak, so “right” can change from person to person, within the guidelines.

      Regarding scotch eggs, I like just omitting the breading. In fact, it’s one of the breakfast options in my meal planner. πŸ™‚


      • Thank you Jason, I will try not to sweat it. I did eat 30 grams of protein on cheat day, then was so full for most of the day I didn’t get to ‘enjoy’ it! In the book Tim talks about eating bear claws etc for breakfast on Cheat day (his text date, ch 1 or 2) but later says to eat protein. Which is better?

        • The cheat day always starts with a regular slow-carb breakfast, which is the protein reference. Only after that do we start to indulge. I don’t remember specifically how long, but it seems to me it was at leat an hour after breakfast that Tim would walk down to the cafe and indulge in the bear claws.

          • OK, I guess I missed that part. I cannot eat ANYTHING after eating 30g of protein, until maybe 8 hours later! Thanks!

          • I don’t take 30g of protein as a requirement for a slow-carb breakfast, it’s one of the techniques Tim used to kickstart some fat loss in his dad and a few others. If your breakfast doesn’t have that much, that’s fine. Check out the breakfast rules I mentioned: two to three eggs, which is at most 18g protein.

  14. I understand the 30g protein upon waking. I exercise first thing in the morning upon waking. Should I have the protein before or after? After might be right at an hour after waking.

    • Hey Dennis,

      It really shouldn’t change the dial too much either way. Tim’s talked about “30 in 30” and a concept like intermittent fasting as two ways to get the same result, which is maintaining the fat-burning state you’re in during the night fast.



  15. So, other than for the purposes of staving off cravings for banned foods, is there any other reason to get the 30 in 30?
    In Tims book, it sounds like there is a scientific reason to do so, but he never elaborated.
    I can not find anything on the interwebz that supports you will lose MORE weight if you eat 30g right away vs. waiting say an hour or an hour and a half.
    When I wake up, I usually get out of bed around 5:00 ish. I then have an hour drive to work. If I am going to get 30g in the first hour, it is going to be in the car.
    So I am just curious how important is this really? I want to succeed, but, cant find clear answers.

    • Hey Chip,

      To my knowledge, there isn’t a hard, fast reason why. He says his dad hit a plateau, and when he integrated this, the plateau went away. Maybe it was the extra calories. He’s also said that intermittent fasting works just as well, as long as you get the calories in.

      If you have to rewire your life to get it, I say the stress isn’t worth it, just eat when you can.


  16. I’ve been on the diet for three weeks and find the 30 grams in thirty minutes the biggest hurdle. I’m a total zombie thirty minutes after waking up, so cooking is out of the question. I just started protein shakes and will probably continue when I don’t have real food. I really hate the idea of shakes. They taste like crap and make me feel like I’m dieting. My other new discovery is the Frittata. If your not familiar, basically a quiche without crust. I make a giant one with an entire carton of eggs, turkey sausage, spinach, onion and whatever else. The final product is something that I can easily nuke or eat cold. The best part is that I can make the night before, and eat for three days if need be.

  17. Hi Jason, glad I found this trail of conversation! Started the SCD 2 weeks ago including the 30/30 with protein shake. I had been eating low carb for weeks except for a couple of times a week where I would have something outside the guideline. Less than 80g carb on a regular basis, or 80/90% of the time. I’m still plateau’d at 26% body fat at 107lbs. I weight lift every other day.. After 2 weeks of regimented 30/30 and low carb, should I see a drop in body fat %? And what else could I be doing wrong πŸ™

    • Hey Vivianne,

      You could be eating too few calories. Your weight is already pretty low, so you’re likely just going to see these last few come off really slowly. I’ve seen people get REALLY good results using a new program called AltShift, even people like you who are already pretty lean and just want to get rid of a little more. Check out the article.


  18. How do I workout in the morning fasted with my last meal yesterday being 4pm and working out from 5:30 – 6:45am without protein after my workout? If I were to take protein after my workout, does that not break my fast? Without it, I can eat at 10am like normal. But I want my muscles to get the protein that they need. Thoughts?

    • Hey Headley,

      You’re asking questions about things of which I’m not familiar. I’ve never gotten into workout timing with protein, etc. My gut is that taking a shake to get some protein after your workout won’t damage your efforts, because the fasted state is a fat burning state, and protein won’t take you out of that as far as I know.


  19. frank adams says

    Here is my favorite breakfast. Using olive oil I fry chopped onions with black beans. I add some garlic powder, salt and pepper. I like to cook the beans until they get a little crispy and the onions start to brown. I then cook 2 whole eggs over easy and plop them on top. I also fry a whole jalapeΓ±o pepper till it is brown and eat it with the dish. A little hot sauce is also great with it.

  20. 30 in 30 is hard to achieve. I usually am able to get 30 in 60 though. For everyone who doesn’t like eggs all the time I’m curious how you’re making them. I was never a huge egg fan until I learned how to cook them using indirect heat. Now my scrambled eggs are buttery and fluffy everytime. I only use sea salt and red pepper flakes and tastes amazing every time.

  21. frank adams says

    I look at 30 in 30 as if i am taking meds, It like Doctors orders. Just do it. That being said: Black beans, onion and garlic powder fried in a little olive oil really help with the the bean tast and texture. I let the yokes of my eggs over easy spread into the beans and shower some Tabasco sauce on. Damn good.

  22. dolejames says

    It’s slimquick available in Greece ?

  23. Hi Mark…. Brand new to the site. Thanks
    For the info! Question; I know with slow carb diet we are supposed to eat within 30 minutes of waking up. I like to get up and go to the gym. Making food, allowing it to settle, then exercise…. Not ideal for my day. Can we use the protein shake idea for that first meal? This way I can drink it as I get ready for the gym, even at the gym while I workout. Then make my eggs and spinach when I get back home, ready to eat them about 2 hours after I wake up?


    • Hey Phil,

      You don’t necessarily need to get the protein before working out, as working out in a fasted state has its own benefits as well.


  24. Thanks for the pointers. I have a sensitivity to eggs and have had to cut them from my diet. Other than protein shakes, do you recommend anything other than eggs for a good 30g protein breakfast?

  25. Hi Jason…thanks so much for the tips. Question :can I use Herbalife shake as the protein powder on the 4HB? It’s the only protein powder available to me.

    • That depends on what’s in them. It’s been a while since I had one, and I know the formula has changed. What’s on the ingredient list?


  26. So where is the “Truth about 30g protein” part? All you have done here is lay out a couple of option for how to get 30 grams of protein in the morning. I don’t know about you but if I click an article titled “Truth about [fat loss tip]” I expect the article to answer if it works, the size of the effect and the mechanism behind it. At the fucking minimum I expect a person account of whether it works or not. This article has none of that. Either do your fucking job or pick less ambitious titles for your work.

    • Thank you for your insightful question. I can tell you’ve read the post and have strong expectations that weren’t met. You’re the first person to ask this question in the nearly 3 years the post has been up, so I’m happy to answer it for you.

      The whole first part of the post was my intent to answer the statement in the title. I mentioned what Tim Ferriss’ experiences were with it (since he’s the one who suggested it) and why he recommended it. Whether or not it “works” depends on you, it’s not a one-stop-shop, just another hack you can put in your toolbelt. It seems to work better for some than for others.

      If you try it, let us know how it works!


  27. Thank you for sharing

  28. Luis Rivas says

    Herbalife shakes in the morning? -Luis

    • To be frank, you have to pick a diet and stick with it. I basically grew up on Herbalife, so I know what it used to be, at least. There are better options out there (and cheaper ones, unless you’re also a distributor and can get the discount I suppose) with better ingredients. In the end, though, it depends on what’s in it. It’s possible that their formula has improved since we had it around the house always.

      If you want to share the ingredients list, I can take a look for you.


  29. So I read all the comments as well as looked for links as to how it worked for you to get 30 in 30. I don’t see an answer except for the last (rude) commenter, whom you told to try it and get back to you. Did you or did you not give it a go? What have you discovered?

    • Hey Jen,

      To be honest, I had completely forgotten about it after writing the post. Not that I didn’t do it – I am certain I tried, but I never wrote it down. I need to actually do it for real, just to get the data.

      What I’ve noticed anecdotally, though, is that while it’s difficult for a lot of people to eat so soon after waking it’s not as difficult to wait until much later to eat and then follow a sort of intermittent fasting routine, where you basically eat your meals within an 8 hour window (for example breakfast at 11, lunch sometime later, and finishing dinner by 7). I’ve seen that work just as well for people, and it definitely works for me.


  30. Telling a 120lb woman and a 200lb man to both eat 5 eggs on waking is not rational. It is not possible that this is a “one size fits all” type of thing.

  31. Craig Spraggon says

    I’ve invented an awesome high protein ready in 1 min brekkie ……as I start work really early ( 5:45 – 6:30) even the 10 mins to cook an omelette was a pain….so heres my brekkie…I cook a great curry in the slow cooker ….lamb shank curry is my favourite. lots of veges in there. Then i portion it off into about 1/3 of hat would be a dinner portion. I the morning zap it in microwave for 1 min…then add 3-4 TB of cottage cheese ….or as much cottage cheese as I feel like. still has nice curry flavour .

  32. It takes me 15 minutes to make breakfast in the morning, including prep and cooking. During that time I couldn’t be any less hungry, but when it gets finished, I’m hungry for it. It took me about a week to train my body to get hungry 15 minutes after waking up.

    My daily breakfast: 5 eggs scrambled in 7g of butter and 20g of oats cooked in water. This is my biggest meal of the day and it keeps me so full up that I don’t eat again for 6 hours.

  33. Scramble two eggs with 1/2 cup cottage cheese, add some bacon crumbled on top = 30 easy grams of protein. And delicious! Alternatively, scramble 2 eggs with 1/2 cup of refried beans and top with salsa. Also = 30 easy grams of protein!

    Thanks for posting this — I don’t usually eat until an hour after I get up, and I wanted to know why it has to be within 30 minutes. Also, when I make this breakfast, I usually eat it all morning long. If I hit a plateau, I’ll try 30 in 30 but now I’m not going to sweat it, thanks to this post!

  34. The best powder I’ve found is garden of life raw meal (chocolate). It’s vegan, no sugar (has Stevia), tastes good. Can be chalky, needs added fat. I use a little bit of raw almond butter (one ingredient, almonds) and some unsweetened coconut milk. Note: they make a protein powder too, don’t use that. I also add cinnamon, powdered ginger, vanilla extract, and high quality cocoa powder (guittard) for flavor. On cheat day I put some fruit in the blender. On regular days I also usually put a little bit of full fat stonyfield farm Greek yogurt for texture, which is technically cheating I think but I’m still losing weight.

  35. Hey Jason really great article, and well explained. Is wine is good for weight loss is it can be take with dinner??

    • Hi Marquis,

      If you’re following Tim Ferriss’ version of the Slow Carb Diet (which is what my site is about specifically), then yes – one glass of RED wine (not really a sweet wine though) a day is totally fine. Science even says it’s good for you!


      • David Knowles says

        A 5oz glass of red wine has only 120 calories and less than 5 gm carbs. Avoid the cheap stuff, since it often has residual or added sugars. There are no calories produced when your body metabolizes alcohol. The liver modifies the alcohol and the result is eliminated through the kidneys. Avoid sweet white wines (which I personally can’t stand)

  36. 2 things come to mind. First off, don’t listen to anything Tim Ferris says. The guy is a con man. I didn’t know there was anyone still listening to his advice after he was discredited ages ago.
    Secondly the 30 in 30 is nonsense. Your body absorbs protein (along with fat and carbs) based on NEED. If you were stranded somewhere and just had protein foods (along with a little fat and very little carbs) do you think that you could only digest 30 grams per sitting? You’d starve to death. Fortunately the body is a lot smarter than that and will digest as much food as it needs to, to fulfill its functions.

  37. I scramble all of this together in my wok every morning. Down 20 pounds since last Fall.
    3 Large Eggs, 1/2c Black Beans, 2c Spinach, 1/8c Feta, 1/2tbsp butter
    30g Protein, 25g Fat, 23g Carbs, 9g Fiber – 430 Calories

  38. BuzzFit Protein Coffee also get’s the job done in the morning too!

  39. A few ounces of sockeye salmon works for me (I don’t like eggs–never did). Alternatively, leftovers from dinner (poultry, fish, lamb, etc). My grandmothers used to eat “dinner” proteins for breakfast and both stayed thin throughout their lifetimes. I am nearly 60 and have tried all kinds of weight loss ideas and plans—-but nothing sustained the weight loss. Then my naturopath suggested I eat within 30 min of waking and voila! I’ve lost 50+ pounds over a period of about a year and it is staying off!! I also eat way more than I did on other plans such as WeightWatchers, etc and feel satisfied. Someone said nothing is “one size fits all” but I think this does, because it is a principle of how the body works.–your current weight does not matter. For the most part, I I save my carbs for the afternoon and evening meals though I have a few berries in the morning sometimes

  40. Hey, so Ive been on SCD for a month and a half approx, I have no issues with breakfast and recently I found these protein pancakes powder made with an egg, water, and a scoop and a half of said mix, here’s the info on it
    As I am concerned this would break the SCD so I wanted to share it with you
    190 kcal – total fat 1g cholesterol 20mg sodium 160mg total carbs 28 g dietary fiber 3g protein 16g
    My main concern is it has fortified wheat flour

  41. Hi, just started the slow carb diet- a few days in- and it’s SO HARD to get 30 G of protein in 30 min after getting up from food- it just makes me feel super bloated (hard boiled eggs and turkey sausage- I can’t bring myself to eat beans that early!) and I have to force myself to eat it all. Ugh. So I’m exploring the protein drink options… but I’ve noticed with some of the powders, they really upset my stomach. I don’t know if it’s the chicory root? Have you heard of anyone else having this issue? I’m just afraid to spend that much on something that’s just gonna go right through me or give me a ton of gas πŸ™
    Also, this probably isn’t the right post for this question, but is it common to feel like you’re just gaining weight the first week?? Thanks.

  42. E. Stearns says

    Hello Jason!
    Thank you for this post! I am hitting a plateau myself and believe this may rule may be the culprit. I dislike and like the idea of a protein shake for the same reasons as you described above. This may be a silly question, but just want to clarify your suggestion: for the Primal Fuel, there are only 10g protein per serving — so does this mean you are suggesting people consume 3 servings per morning to follow the SCD? Thank you for your time.

    • Hey E – yes, if you needed to use Primal Fuel for your breakfast and wanted to strictly adhere to 30 in 30, I’d use three servings. It’s only a 24 oz beverage at that point, and it’s still only 3g sugars – none of which are added (they naturally occur in the ingredients).

      That said, I’d still either not worry about 30 in 30, maybe try some intermittent fasting, or use real food instead.

  43. Hi Jason,
    this was a good read as I have been following the 30/30 rule for a while now and I do that through protein shakes. I’m much the same as many others, I have little time to prepare food and sit and eat it. However, I’m not seeing the dramatic results on the scales that you speak of, but in my mind, I believe the shape of my body is changing dramatically through strength exercise. You speak of protein shakes as not wanting to ‘build muscle’ (you should be so lucky, have you any idea how hard it is to put on even 6lbs of muscle mass in a year ? And we all know muscle mass burns calories) but in my opinion (and no it is not a professional one, but an experienced one) it shouldn’t matter how you get that protein in as long as you do, there are some protein powders that are full of sweeteners but as long as you keep an eye on the calories and sugar content, if it hits that protein goal, it’s all good.

    • Hey CW – all fair points. I’m just a proponent of whole food when possible, and shakes as supplements. That’s really all I mean there.

      And there’s a way of knowing for sure, not just in your mind, that your shape is changing – measure it! πŸ™‚


  44. adapted eyes says

    That guy does not look 28. Are you for real? He actually looks older than 60 because his skin is so sun damaged. Give me a break.

  45. Eifle McSherry says

    1 or 2 romaine leafs+
    1/4 can refried black beans heated 1 min micro wave
    1/4C grated cheese placed on top
    3 eggs fried in butter
    1/4 to 1/2C kimchi (napa cabbage)
    Bon appetite

  46. I have solved the protein conundrum (what works for me, anyway) two ways:

    1. Beef collagen protein powder, called Vital Proteins Beef Gelatin. Two heaping scoops yields over 20 g. of protein of the kind which supports joints, skin, hair, and nails – and more importantly for me, helps the gut lining heal and rebuild (anyone not eating organic consistently is eating Glyphosate, the ubiquitous pesticide now verified to be eating holes in human intestines – not just those of insects. This causes mood destabilization, among other issues). The Beef Gelatin powder has to be mixed with cold water first, but then can be added to chicken or beef or vegie broth and heated for a quick and easy to digest protein-boosted broth protein breakfast. You might toss in some kale to boost the protein. It tastes slightly beefy so it also blends well into beans and stews of all kinds.

    2. After days of researching on line for an organic “complete protein” powder for smoothies that wouldn’t trigger my many food allergies, digestive issues, or hypoglycemia, I finally found one that would work: Promix Complete plant based vegan protein powder. 2 scoops of Promix yield 29g. of complete protein without dairy, soy, gluten, corn, nuts, any form of sweetener (which I needed to avoid due to hypoglycemia), artificial flavors, or preservatives. Total ingredient list: organic pea protein, organic sprouted brown rice, Non-GMO Vitamin B-12. I needed a complete protein powder that would digest easily as well, and this one does, so perhaps people who exercise first thing would not find their system burdened by Promix. I get the unflavored kind with Vit. B12. It has a very slight pea flavor that isn’t unpleasant and can easily be masked completely by other things in the smoothie (such as cacao powder, blueberries, or banana – I personally do need a bit of natural whole fruit to get my blood sugar up for a good start in the morning).

    If anyone else is dealing with these kinds of dietary challenges, maybe they can benefit from my findings; these two powders have been real life savers in getting enough protein, easily.

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