Protein is something we all need, yet we still fail to consistently get enough protein to benefit us. The reason may be that many people believe protein is expensive. Whey and soy protein powders tend to be costly at $10 and up per container. Also, many people tend to prefer carb-heavy diets, or a lot of snacking. Pretzels, chips, cookies, cake, sweets and many side dishes like mashed potatoes are all carbohydrate foods. If you're getting plenty of protein you won't want to eat quite so much carbs in your diet which tend to lead to weight gain faster. You've probably heard in more than a few places that protein is essential for dieters, muscle builders and is a basic part of a healthy daily diet. Protein is great for muscle growth and it also helps control our hunger urges, keeping us from overeating. Protein has also been listed as one of the natural ways how to prevent stretch marks, since it adds to healthy, balanced skin growth. And yes, it's possible to incorporate more protein into your diet without spending tons of cash! Let's look at some of the cheapest protein foods that money can buy. Keep in mind, prices vary from store to store and state to state, but generally these tend to be good low cost alternatives.

Cans of Tuna fish can be a cheap source of protein and are one of the bodybuilder's best kept secrets. At the Kroger's, their store brand and other brands have been as cheap as 50 to 60 cents a can. Each can provides a total of 20-33 grams of protein. Another cheap source of protein is found in yogurts. The Kroger brand of yogurt includes a series called "Carbmasters" which are intended as low carb/low sugar yogurt for diabetics. These yogurts sometimes go on special as cheap as 33 cents each. Lowfat, no fat or skim milk is also relatively cheap when you divide up how many 1 cup servings you can get from a container. It's a great healthy source of protein which should be a part of your daily diet.

Some other foods which you may find have good amounts of protein include ground turkey and ground chicken. These tend to be lower in fat than ground beef, and can be purchased in packages for around $3 or so at many grocery stories. You can use them in pasta or to make burgers, and generally I've found you can get 3-4 meals per container for $3. Definitely a cheap protein source! As mentioned before, whey and soy protein powders may seem costly at $10 a container, but in fact you may get 10-15 servings out of these. You can add the powder into shakes, oatmeal or other recipes to really get some protein into your diet. Bagels and pasta, while they contain carbohydratess, are considered a good healthy food to have. Thomas' Bagels can have as much as 11 grams of protein each, depending on the bagel type. Pasta tends to have 7-10 grams of protein in a serving. You'll also notice there are some high-protein cereals on the market by companies such as Koshi. Kashi Go Lean Crunch in particular contains 9 grams of protein a serving. Keep an eye on the nutrition info on these products as they may contain a lot of sodium or sugar as well.

As you can see if you shop around you can find some excellent sources of protein to stock up on. Keep in mind that these come from just one diet which revolves around building muscle and maintaining overall health. What works for one individual may not work for someone else quite as well, so you can always add or remove foods based on your specific needs.