25 Foods High in Lysine

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Lysine is an amino acid, meaning it is one of the building blocks of protein. As such it is needed for tissue growth, the absorption of calcium, the conversion of fat into energy, and the formation of collagen. A lysine deficiency, on the other hand, can lead to fatigue, dizziness, and loss of appetite, stunted growth, and anemia. No two people though have the same recommended daily intake value for lysine as it is calculated per body mass. It is recommended that 30 mg of lysine per kg of body weight be consumed daily. Here is a list of foods with high lysine contents that will surely help you achieve your daily goals.

  1. Egg White
    By far egg whites have the highest lysine content out of all the foods. One of the purported side effects of lysine is that it raises cholesterol slightly so cutting egg yolks out of your diet and consuming solely the egg white will have the added benefit of lowering your cholesterol. A 100 g servingcontains 5.90 g of lysine.
  2. Cod
    Cod is an excellent source of B vitamins and proteins, especially Vitamin B3 or Niacin.  Niacin is essential in raising good HDL cholesterol and lowering triglycerides. A 100 g servingcontains 5.77 g of lysine.
  3. Soy Protein
    The benefits of soy protein have been touted by many for many years now. If you are an athlete and are taking lysine to help you build muscle mass, then the high amounts of protein in soy will benefit you greatly. A 100 g servingcontains 5.33 g of lysine.
  4. Parmesan Cheese
    Parmesan cheese goes great with all kinds of dishes, and it is nutritious to boost. One hundred grams of shredded parmesan cheese contains 1200 mg of calcium and 735 mg of phosphorous both of which are essential to bone health. The 3.84 g of lysine in that same serving will help you absorb these nutrients that much more efficiently.
  5. Beef
    Rich in vitamins and many nutrients such as zinc iron, and phosphorous beef is a pillar of any balanced diet. If grass-fed, beef makes a fantastic source of collagen which is the protein in charge of the strength of all your connective tissues. A 100 g serving of meat on average contains 3.61 g of lysine.
  6. Bacon
    About half of the fat found in bacon is monounsaturated, meaning it is good for you. Bacon even contains oleic acid which is most commonly found in olive oil so contrary to popular belief, in moderation bacon can have beneficial effects on your cardiac health. A 100 g of cured pork bacon contains 3.47 g of lysine.
  7. Dried-Frozen Tofu
    Koya-dofu is a freeze-dried variety of tofu that is rich in iron, selenium and phosphorous.  It has been linked to lower risk of breast cancer. A 100g servingcontains 3.16 g of lysine.
  8. Parsley
    This astringent, aromatic herb is a nutritious power house with tons of essential oils, and antioxidants especially luteolin which apart from being a powerful anti-inflammatory is also exceptional at keeping UVB-induced skin aging in check. A 100 g servingcontains 3.12 g of lysine.
  9. Turkey
    Turkey is a low fat, high in protein alternative for anyone looking to lower their blood sugar levels.  Being low in the Glycemic index turkey in conjunction with the lysine it contains will help ensure you lower your risk of developing insulin imbalances. A 100 g serving of turkeycontains 3.11 g of lysine.
  10. Spirulina
    Spirulina is nothing more than sea algae powder. But boy is it rich in proteins, antioxidants and B vitamins.  It has been dubbed the most nutrient dense food on the planet with over 26 times the calcium content in milk. A 100 g servingcontains 3.02 g of lysine.
  11. Whelk
    A type of sea snail commonly eaten around the world, whelks are extremely rich in Omega-3 fatty acids which the lysine in your body will efficiently convert to energy. 100 g of whelkwillcontain 2.93 g of lysine.
  12. Milk
    Milk has always been known to aid in the formation of healthy bones and teeth because of its calcium content.  Lysine is essential for calcium absorption so ingesting foods that are both rich in calcium and lysine is the way to go. 100 g of milk will contain 2.87 g of lysine.
  13. Sturgeon
    Sturgeon is mostly thought of when thinking of caviar, but this rich fish is a potent source of Vitamin D which is integral to the absorption of calcium and phosphorous.  Sturgeon is also rich in glutamic acid which is used by the body to synthesize many different proteins.  100 g of smokedsturgeoncontains 2.87 g of lysine.
  14. Tuna
    Tuna fish is a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and nutrients.  Tuna can also help improve bone health because of its high selenium content, which also acts as a strong antioxidant. A 100 g of tuna contains 2.15 g of lysine.
  15. Ostrich
    For the adventurous souls out there ostrich meat will present you with a solid source of lysine while at the same time regaling you with a healthier red meat alternative to beef.  Over 80% of your Vitamin B and over 50% of your selenium will ensure your body is metabolizing proteins left and right. 100 g of ostrichcontain 2.59 g of lysine.
  16. Salmon
    Salmon is great at reducing the risk of cognitive decline, heart disease, and cancer. The antioxidant astaxanthin alongside lysine helps you maintain youthful skin free of wrinkles and age spots. 100 g of salmoncontain 2.57 g of lysine.
  17. CottonseedFlour
    Cottonseed flour is extremely rich in amino acids containing well over 100% the daily values for tryptophan, threonine, isoleucine, valine, and histidine.  With 2.53 g of lysine per 100 g serving, if you need to boost your essential amino acid intake, you cannot go wrong with this product.
  18. Haddock
    Haddock is a great source of several minerals, including phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium, sodium, zinc, copper and manganese. 100 g of haddockcontains 2.32 g of lysine.
  19. Trout
    Trout is a great source of protein.  Also rich in potassium and phosphorus which help with reducing the risk for stroke. 100 g of troutcookedcontains 2.29 g of lysine.
  20. Sardines
    Sardines are rich in potassium which benefits blood pressure, they are rich in vitamin D which helps with the absorption of calcium. 100 g of sardinescontain 2.26 g of lysine.
  21. Lupins
    A common snack food in the Mediterranean these seeds must be peeled and then pickled before they can be consumed. The effort will reward you with a rich source of beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and surprisingly no carbohydrates. 100g of lupinscontain 1.93 g of lysine.
  22. PeanutFlour
    For those with gluten allergies peanut flour presents a viable and delicious alternative to wheat. Peanut flour contains high amounts of arginine another important amino acid which will help lysine do its job more efficiently. 100 g contains 1.87 g of lysine.
  23. White Beans
    Known as Navy Beans they contain high levels of antioxidants, primarily molybdenum. With high calcium content, white beans are perfect for any athlete looking to strengthen their bones. 100 g of whitebeanscontain 1.60 g of lysine.
  24. Pistachio Nuts
    One of the main functions of lysine is carnitine production, there is ample evidence that vitamin B6 is essential in carnitine synthesis and these delicious nuts are rich in many vitamins especially B6. 100 g contains 1.14 g of lysine.
  25. Chives
    This tasty and versatile herb of the same garlic family is a surprisingly healthy addition to any contemporary diet.  Chives are an excellent source of minerals such as iron, calcium, sulfur, and vitamins A and C. 100 g contain 1.06 g of lysine.

Reference:

  1. All values taken from