How to Get 30 Grams of Protein Within 30 Minutes of Waking Up

by Stephen

How to Get 30 Grams of Protein Within 30 Minutes of Waking Up - The 4-Hour BodyThis is a companion to my previous post.

The 30/30 Rule for Accelerated Fat Loss

Directions: Consume 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up!  Do not make any changes to your diet or exercise!

How to get 30 Grams of Protein in 10 minutes or less!

Some “Real” Food Options:

  1. Liquid Egg Whites have roughly 26 grams of protein per cup.  Microwave (or cook) for 2.5 minutes in a Pyrex dish. Then microwave 150 grams of frozen spinach for 5 minutes to get another 6 grams of protein. Then add your favorite salsa. This makes for 32 grams of protein in less than 10 minutes.
  2. Canned Tuna + 1 or 2 eggs (or egg whites): Chuck it all in a pan with some mushrooms, cayenne pepper and Italian herbs and put it in the oven till it’s done.
  3. 3/4 cup of your favorite beans (8 grams protein) + White or Red Onions (chopped) + 3 eggs (18 grams protein) or liquid egg whites and salsa or Cholula

The Quick Fix (less than 3 minutes)

  1. One Scoop Whey Protein Concentrate in milk (not slow carb) or in water. Add a handful of raw almonds if you like.
  2. One protein bar of choice or build your own.
  3. Ice + Coffee + Whey Protein Concentrate + ½ scoop egg protein powder (staying powder) + cinnamon (this video is even more complex) mixed in blender.
  4. Ready-made protein shakes. Pure protein or Myoplex are decent options (among many others).
  5. Ready-made zero carb 40 gram  protein drink. (light and not filling) 

* P.S. You can make great smoothies with an immersion blender. They are simple to use and even easier to clean. My personal favorite is this lightweight and inexpensive Cuisinart Immersion Blender.  I use it almost daily and it has quickly become my favorite kitchen appliance. 

30/30 Rule Quick Fix Protein Ideas

Quick Link to Products on Amazon (or click on the picture)

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Protein Composition of Common Foods (To find a foods nutritional composition consult myfitnesspal

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Justin November 30, 2012 at 5:14 pm

Hey Stephen,

Someone emailed me about this protein a while ago

Grass fed and suppose to be the best.
They use it in the evolve bars
which I got to try and they are pretty good, but high in fruit/sugar/fructose, so only good for post workout.

Did you listen to the most recent Robb Wolf podcast about carb backloading and the carb nite book by Kiefer. Some really interesting stuff that contradicts the low GI theory especially for type 2 diabetes.


Kellie January 26, 2013 at 10:56 am

Greek yogurt is high in protein (18-20g per cup). Seems like it could be combined with seeds and nuts to make 30g for breakfast.


Stephen January 27, 2013 at 6:49 pm

I think you are absolutely right!

I didn’t include it here because I am sure I would hear many people complain that it breaks Tim’s rule to “avoid most milk products. Cottage cheese is an exception.

I personally think Greek Yogurt is a fine choice. It is quite low in carbs (half that of regular yogurt) and as you mentioned packed with protein.



Jason December 1, 2015 at 9:54 am

I know I’m a little late to the party here, but I agree on Greek yogurt. I use 1/2 cup of whole milk, no sugar added Greek yogurt in my smoothie every morning.

I break a few of Tim’s rules with my breakfast smoothies, namely the yogurt, a cup of frozen fruit, and a cup of soy milk (plus 2 raw eggs and 2 packets of stevia). But I’ve not noticed any problems, it gets me primed and ready to go for my morning workout, and any possible hormone problems from the soy seem to be pretty well taken care of by eating 2 hard boiled eggs and 4 oz. of beef liver before bed.


Paula March 19, 2013 at 6:27 am

Hi, I have GERD and I have been fairly successful in managing it without meds on a Paleo diet. When I started the Paleo diet I felt great and started to lose weight. In the last few months the weight loss stopped and I’ve be,y isolate mixed with coconut milk. I started to lose weight again, but eventually I noticed I had mild stomach pain. I do not react to coconut milk so it must be the whey. Is there another brand of whey isolate that would not irritate my gut?


Stephen March 19, 2013 at 9:45 pm

Check out Vega One: or for meal replacement, Matrix Meal:

They both would probably be good options!



Joseph Gartner June 18, 2013 at 10:38 am

I make a big batch of these lentils on the weekend:

And put them atop my eggs. Lentils have good amounts of protein, plus the eggs makes for a tasty meal. The lentils are REALLY good, and you can make them extra spicey by adding jalapeno to the recipe.


Heather July 10, 2013 at 10:35 am

So my weight loss has stalled and I read to cut the processed stuff…so I stopped eating protein powder in water for breakfast. I am having a hard time stomaching eggs or beans. I really just don’t like them…or I have not found a way to like them yet. What do you suggest?


Stephen July 14, 2013 at 10:47 pm

Turkey bacon, chicken sausage, with avocado, tomato slices, Greek yogurt, dare I say 1/2 cup grapefruit or 1/2 cup fresh berries. I think these would be great options. And if you are going to have a shake I would highly advise against a morning shake. They may be good for an afternoon or evening snack. Very good post workout, but really shouldn’t be a meal replacement in my humble opinion. Also to make eggs better, try an omelet with onions and mushrooms if you haven’t already. Can go great with a little bit of the chicken sausage, or even steak and eggs.



ouspensky August 19, 2013 at 8:38 pm

I was one of those guys who always skipped breakfast. So on my SCD i am using a whey protein shake for the 30before30. It is a homemade mix pure whey+pure coco+pure stevia. I was thinking of adding black sesame to the mix so I can get some slow carbs in my “breakfast” as well. any advice on what proportion I should use relative to the protein? Related question, is it better to have my protein shake be a mix fo casien and whey rather than just pure whey?


Laila August 30, 2013 at 8:29 am

I’m a college student but really want to try this diet because I’m not big on carbs anyways, and dairy was easier to give up than I thought. I’m using a whey protein blend that’s 30 G protein, 7g carbs and 1 g sugar and mixing it in iced coffee in the mornings as my thirty g of protein upon waking because it’s hard for me to have time to do much else in thiry minutes. Is this a fine option or is the whey going to hurt my chances of weight loss? Also, I’m really bad with the snooze button, so I’ve just been using the term “wake up” as when I get out of bed and stop snoozing–does it have to be 30 minutes as my eyes open?


Stephen August 30, 2013 at 8:43 am

I have started to recommend against protein shakes for breakfast and as a meal replacement. The protein shake is best if used as a simple and convenient low glycemic snack to increase your meal frequency throughout your day. Also it is wonderful as a post-workout snack. When done like this I notice the best results. Here is an example of what I mean, using a 5 X per day meal plan:

6:00 am Wake-up
7:00 am Breakfast with Omega 3 Fatty Acid
8:00 am
9:00 am
10:00 am 10:00 am snack or protein shake
11:00 am
12:00 pm
1:00 pm 1:00 pm Lunch
2:00 pm
3:00 pm
4:00 pm 4:00 pm protein shake or snack
5:00 pm
6:00 pm
7:00 pm 7:00 pm Dinner
8:00 pm
9:00 pm
10:00 pm Bedtime

Here is a protein shake recipe I really like using rice protein powder:

1. Use 1 scoop of a low carbohydrate rice protein powder (carbs < 2 grams per serving) Recommended brand - Nutribiotic Rice Protein Powder (Chocolate or vanilla) 2. 6 - 8 ounces of unsweetened coconut or almond milk Recommended brand - So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk - Pacific Unsweetened Almond Milk - Almond Breeze Unsweetened Almond Milk I am a big fan of eggs for breakfast. along with some protein such as turkey bacon. If you have to go for a shake because of time then this may be your only option, but you may need to modify this depending on your results. Oh yea... The 30 minute rule is a general guideline, not an exact science... so just try your best and that is fine. Best, Stephen


Azariah April 19, 2014 at 1:27 pm

If this post is still active, I would love some assistance.

1) There is a lot of debate about protein shakes on 4 hour body convos and whey on the slow carb diet. Are there any one’s that are truly acceptable for the program? Also, we have been taking pure protein but I realized it is dairy. Is that still ok? I noticed you mentioned “most milk products” but I am at a loss to discern the difference.

2) 30 in 30: The CQ is supposed to be taken 30 minutes before a meal three times a day. Is this possible with breakfast since it has to be eaten in 30 minutes?
Does a shake count for breakfast? If not, I wonder if I can gulp it down the same time as CQ?

3) Are other diet supplements able to be taken with AGG and PAGG such as thermogenics? I was thinking of doing Adovcare’s 24 day Challenge with this diet.


Stephen April 24, 2014 at 7:54 am

Hi Azariah,

1. This is currently my favorite “4-Hour Body Approved” protein supplement It is non dairy. The reference to “most milk products” means that almond milk and coconut milk are OK. Are they milk? :-)

2. Yes you can still take CQ in the morning, but as you said this is a bit of a problem. I would take it when I get out of bed, take a shower, get dressed and then eat. I don’t like shakes for breakfasts, they tend to stall fat loss. Aim for shakes as a post workout snack, and try to have a whole food breakfast.

3. I would avoid too many supplements at once. In this case more is definitely not better! Focus on one thing at a time.

Hope this helps,



Steve August 8, 2014 at 3:01 pm

After waking up I do 50 push-up and 10 pull-ups then walk straight to the fridge, grab 4-5 Egglands Best crack’em and dump’em, whole, into a cup and pour about 1/4 cup of OJ over’em to knock the yuk factor out and down the hatch it goes. Then I hit the button to start the coffee pot. It’s old school and it works. Get the muscles pumped first and then eat. Seems natural to me. Human ancestors certainly had to work their body before almost each and every because they had no choice. Been doing it for 2 years and its the quickest and easiest way to get 30 grams of protein right off the bat.


Stephen August 8, 2014 at 3:06 pm

Hi Steve sounds like a winning plan! I have never drank raw eggs I just can’t seem to stomach the idea, but this sure is a quick and easy way to get your 30 grams of protein and it’s wonderful to do right after a quick workout.

– Stephen


PETE February 28, 2015 at 6:53 am

I tend to have tin of tuna and 4 bean salad for lunch, can I add some virgin olive oil or not?


Stephen February 28, 2015 at 7:59 am

Yes, Pete Olive or avocado oil are preferred and are just fine while on the slow carb diet.



cdh April 20, 2015 at 8:11 pm

how i do it:
2 cups of milk (16g)
2 eggs (12g)
2 slices of toast (~3 to 4g)

alternatives to eggs and toast:
high protein cereal (like special K protein) with another cup of milk.

I don’t see why people need to really modify normal breakfast. the secret is the milk, I think.


Stephen May 2, 2015 at 6:15 pm

True CDH, I also believe this makes for a perfectly healthy breakfast. Although you are bound to have some insulin response, which the slow carb diet is designed to avoid. So for those strictly adhering to the “5 rules” the toast and milk are off the menu. At least for a period of time.

– Stephen


jessica August 30, 2015 at 7:43 pm

Hi! I’ve recently started a weightless journey. I am about 5 months in and I have lost 45lbs. I am working out at 5 am 5 to 7 days a week. Right now it is 7 days, as we are challenging ourselves to work out for 100 days straight. I recently added combat protein powder as a recovery after workout. I am wanting to get the 30 grams of protein in prior to workout. Should I drink a protein shake when I wake up at 430, and then at 630 after workout for recovery? Is it better for weightloss to eat the 30 grams in “real” food or does it make a difference? Thanks for any help and advice!


Stephen September 1, 2015 at 1:27 pm

I am always an advocate of “real food” but there is nothing wrong with using shakes for the short term. Maybe by now you have figured out what your body prefers at that time of the morning, it is perfectly OK to enjoy your shake after your workout as well and work in a fasted or semi fasted state.

– Stephen


Emilie September 14, 2015 at 6:39 pm

I am considering a paleo-type diet, both for weight loss and general health. However, I am mildly allergic to eggs; I can have them once a week without regretting it too much. I can’t have anything from a cow, including whey, and I fear I am becoming allergic to nuts, including coconut and almonds. So, I am wondering if there is anything much left for me to eat, especially that doesn’t require cooking first thing in the morning.


Stephen September 18, 2015 at 10:15 am

Hi Emilie,

Well I have to say this does place you into a bit of a pickle – which btw are perfectly fine on paleo and slow-carb. If you don’t want to cook and you aren’t big on “real-food” you can always opt for a morning shake, Vega One and Matrix Meal are both very good choices and they have options that steer clear from the allergies you listed.

– Stephen


Albert November 1, 2015 at 1:52 am

May I also suggest people take the time to exercise because the energy induced by the above creation will be intense. I will give it a try this weekend and let everyone know about my experience.


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