How Many Grams Of Protein Should You Eat On Keto

Example Of Three Levels Of Protein Intake Per Day Using The Same Foods

Dr. Stephen Phinney: How much protein should you eat on a ketogenic diet?

1. About 70g of Protein

In breakfast
  • 30 g of cheese

Serving suggestion

  • 85g of salmon

Serving suggestion

  • 2 cups of mixed salad
  • 1 half avocado
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 100 g of chicken

Serving suggestion

2. About 100g of protein

  • 30 g of cheese

Serving suggestion

  • 130 g of salmon

Serving suggestion

  • 2 cups of mixed salad
  • 1 half avocado
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 140 g of chicken

Serving suggestion

3. About 130g of protein

  • 60 g of cheese

Serving suggestion

  • 150 g of salmon

Serving suggestion

  • 2 cups of mixed salad
  • 1 half avocado
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 180 g of chicken

Serving suggestion

  • 2 tablespoons of butter

Aim For A Minimum Of 20g Of Protein At Every Meal

Studies have shown that the body requires around 20 to 30 grams of protein at every meal to make sure amino acids are absorbed into the muscles. So, you should spread the protein you take over two or three meals instead of taking most of it in a single meal if you intend to build your muscle mass.

But can you consume too much protein in a single meal?

This is a controversial topic, with only a few studies to answer this important question. Two 2019 studies suggested that taking 20 or 30 g of protein per meal promotes muscle growth.

But incorporating more protein in a meal did not immediately improve muscle growth. Hence, some people believed this means that anything more than 30 g in one meal was wasted. However, this is not actually what the studies suggested.

Since muscle synthesis is not the only possible benefit of consuming protein, these studies dont indicate that the additional protein is wasted.

Furthermore, questions arise how does eating once or twice per day impact the way the body uses protein? Do low-carbohydrate diets help change this?

Presently, we have no answers to these questions, so its recommended that you take no more than 30 g of protein per meal.

Tips For Eating Less Protein On A Keto Diet

Since increasing carbs too much might kick you out of ketosis, your main option is to increase fat.

Consider eating more low-carb nuts, like pecans or macadamia nuts. Coconut products can also be added to bump up your calories from fat, without adding too much protein.

Alternatively, you can opt for a vegetarian-based keto diet, which will decrease your protein consumption but may increase your carbs.

Unless you have a serious reason for limiting your protein intake while on keto, you would probably actually benefit from eating more protein, not less.

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My Protein Is Higher Than My Fat Recommendation What Should I Do

You may notice that the percentage of grams of protein you have to eat is much higher and fat is a lot lower than the percentages that are typically recommended for keto. This can happen for two reasons:

  • You didnt convert grams to calories. You must convert the grams of fat and protein to calories and then calculate your macronutrient percentages. Calorie percentages, not gram percentages, are what the recommended keto percentages are based on. Usually, once you account for the fact that one gram of fat has five more calories than one gram of protein the calorie percentages will end up being what you expect from a typical keto diet.
  • Your goals and activity levels require you to eat more protein. Even after you convert grams to calories, you may find that your suggested protein intake is high and fat is a bit low for keto . This commonly happens for keto dieters who lift weights and wont impair your progress with the keto diet.
  • The only problem that high protein intake can cause, however, is lower levels of ketone production. If this is the case for you and you want to maintain a higher level of ketosis, then try decreasing your protein intake to the lower end of the recommended range or restricting carbs a bit more.

    Protein Requirements For Weight Loss On A Ketogenic Diet

    How Much Protein Should You Eat To Stay in Ketosis

    While on keto, upping your protein intake can help with weight loss as protein is the most satiating macronutrient.

    A 2005 study put subjects on a weight maintenance diet that was either low in protein or high in protein . Those on the high protein diet spontaneously ate around 441 calories less with no real effort to reduce calories.

    Researchers believe that the calorie reduction may be related to the impact that a high protein diet has on leptin a hormone that inhibits hunger.

    Although it is understood that protein helps with weight loss, the exact amount needed to optimize weight loss is still up for debate and depends on a variety of factors.

    Active people may benefit from eating between 1.8 – 2.7 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight when trying to lose weight.

    For people who are sedentary and overweight, 1.2 – 1.5 g/kg may be more appropriate to promote weight loss while keeping calories under control.

    If a person weighs 250 lbs, this translates to 135-170 grams of protein per day. If your goal with keto is weight loss, a focus on protein intake will make achieving that goal much more accessible.

    If your main goal is weight loss, you still need to watch your calorie intake, even if the calories are coming from protein. Excess calories will lead to weight gain, no matter what the source.

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    How Long Should You Be On Keto Diet Before Doing Carb Cycling

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    People Looking To Maintain Muscles Mass While Losing Weight

    If you’re aiming to lose weight healthily, ideally you want to reduce your body fat percentage while preserving as much lean muscle mass as possible.

    Protein intake could play an important role here, as research suggest that diets containing 18%-25% protein can result in greater muscle maintenance when compared to lower protein diets .

    Another study demonstrated that a moderate to high protein intake at 1.2 g/kg of body weight was shown to prevent muscle loss over a 4-week period when combined with calorie-restriction and resistance training .

    Interestingly, research also demonstrated that people who consumed 2.4 g/kg protein per day again combined with resistance training and a calorie-restricted diet, saw an INCREASE in muscle mass over a 4-week period .

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    What Does Protein Do In Your Body

    Protein is a major component of every cell in your body. After you eat protein, it is broken down into individual amino acids, which are incorporated into your muscles and other tissues.

    These are just a few of proteins important functions:

    • Muscle repair and growth. The protein in your muscles is normally broken down and rebuilt on a daily basis, and a fresh supply of amino acids is needed for muscle protein synthesis, the creation of new muscle. Consuming adequate dietary protein helps prevent muscle loss, and when coupled with resistance training promotes muscle growth.4
    • Maintaining healthy skin, hair, nails, and bones as well as our internal organs. Although the protein turnover in these structures occurs more slowly than in muscle, new amino acids are required to replace those that become old and damaged over time.
    • Creation of hormones and enzymes. Many of the hormones necessary for life including insulin and growth hormone are also proteins. Likewise, most enzymes in the human body are proteins. Your body depends on a continuous supply of amino acids to make these vital compounds.

    In addition, both clinical experience and scientific studies suggest that getting enough protein can help make weight control easier. This might be because protein can reduce appetite and prevent overeating by triggering hormones that promote feelings of fullness and satisfaction.5 Your body also burns more calories digesting protein compared to fat or carbs.6

    Putting It All Together Calorie Counting Keto And Weight Loss

    How Much Protein Should You Eat on a Keto Diet?

    Though the key to weight loss is maintaining a calorie deficit, this doesnt mean

    that you should always track what you eat for optimal weight loss.

    In reality, one of the most successful strategies for sustainable results is eating highly-satiating foods that keep you satisfied as you lose weight.

    Does this mean you can eat as much as you want and never gain weight on a ketogenic diet? Of course not. Even on a zero-carb diet, overeating calories will cause you to gain weight.

    If cutting carbs isnt working as expected, your overall calorie intake may be the reason why. This is when tracking what you eat for 2-3 weeks can be a helpful tool.

    To get started, follow these three steps:

  • Order and use a food scale to measure what you eat.
  • Download and configure a keto-friendly tracking app.
  • Personalize your macro targets and meals using our keto calculator.
  • Alternatively, if tracking becomes too stressful and time-consuming, we also offer a personalized keto meal planning app that will do most of the work for you.

    P.S. Have a look at the Keto Academy, our foolproof 30-day keto meal planner. It has all the tools, information, and recipes needed for you to succeed.

    + The food will always fit to your macros and cooking preferences!

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    Essential Keto Diet Tips For Beginners

    So you dont throw in the towel after the first few days, here are essential tips to help you avoid the biggest beginner mistakes.

    1. Stay Hydrated

    When you start on a ketogenic diet, your body is slowly but surely forced to empty its glycogen stores.

    Since there are 2-3 grams of water attached to every single gram of carbohydrate in the form of glycogen, you will inevitably lose lots of fluid.

    If you dont drink enough on keto, you will experience the following symptoms, also known as the keto flu, especially in the beginning:

    • Headache

    But its not just fluid loss that can trigger physical symptoms.

    2. Do Not Fear the Shaker

    Once you deplete glycogen stores, electrolytes are flushed out with the water. The most essential of these is salt , so its deficiency is also responsible for 90% of all physical ailments.

    In particular, headaches and dizziness, the main symptoms of keto flu, are a clear sign of too little salt consumption.

    Unjustly, an unhealthy image has been attached to sugars white counterpart.

    While sugar consumption promotes insulin resistance and body fat storage, salt increases insulin sensitivity and aids weight loss .

    Contrary to popular belief, countries with the highest salt consumption yield the lowest cardiovascular disease rates .

    In addition, salt takes the bitter taste out of food and acts against cravings. Since it also has a positive feedback loop, unlike sugar, your body will tell you when youve had enough salt.

    3. Embrace Healthy Fats

    Why Do Calories Matter Isnt A Keto Macronutrient Calculator Useless If I Am Already Limiting Carbs

    After hearing about the keto diet and how it helps you burn fat, you may be wondering why we even have a keto calculator. According to many low carb diet proponents, all that really matters when it comes to losing fat is cutting the carbs Isnt this true?

    High-quality research studies have been published on this specific topic, and the data clearly shows that regardless if you are on a high carb or low carb diet you will lose weight if you are in a calorie deficit and gain weight if you are in a calorie surplus. For a closer look at the research and why calories matter, check out this article.

    Due to the irrefutable importance of calorie consumption for weight loss and weight gain, a keto macro calculator is one of the most valuable tools that you can use to increase your chances of diet success.

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    How To Get Your Protein Intake On Track

    If youre unsure whether your keto diet is actually too high in protein, youll first need to get a clearer picture of your intake. To do so, Long recommends tracking your food in an app for at least a few days. If youre eating more than about 20 percent of your daily calories from protein, youll need to adjust your meals and snacks to tone it down.

    Another surefire way to test whether your keto diet is actually achieving its purpose: Test your ketone levels. Using at-home strips, you can tune into the amount of ketones present in your urine, and make sure levels are in the true ketosis range. Many test stripslike Finaflexs Ketone Test Stripsstart off beige in color, and take on a pink or purple hue, depending on the amount of ketones detected. If you dont fall into the optimal range, take a look at your protein intake and adjust as needed.

    Pin this handy infographic for quick reference:

    Diggin Whats Good? For more essential health facts, tips, and inspiration, join our Facebook communities, Eating Healthy and Staying Fit, today!

    How Much Protein Will You Eat On The Keto Diet

    How many carbs on keto can you eat per day to achieve (and ...

    A typical keto diet may include 20 to 25 percent of calories coming from protein, says Keene. One common misconception is that this is a high-protein diet, when in reality, its moderate in protein. Too much protein can be converted and broken down as sugar to be utilized as an energy source, she says.

    That said, you dont want to go too low in protein. You want to be able to stay in ketosis without sacrificing lean body mass if you lose weight, says Whitmire. This can loosely equate to 1.2 to 1.5 g of protein per kilogram of body weight. Therefore, a 140-lb woman may aim for 76 to 95 g per day. For reference, one 3.5-ounce skinless chicken breast offers 31 g of protein.

    One of the best on a keto diet is fatty fish , says Keene, as it offers a source of heart-healthy protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Eggs are another good choice one large egg contains 6 g of protein and 5 g of fat.

    While a keto diet may focus on fat, that doesnt mean you have to eat bacon and sausages all day. There is room for leaner proteins, like chicken or cod just remember to add fat to these lower-in-fat sources, she says. Many cuts of beef are also considered lean or extra lean, as they contain 10 g or less of total fat, as well as a modest amount of saturated fat . These include eye of round roast and steak, sirloin tip side steak, top round roast and steak, bottom round roast and steak, and top sirloin steak, notes the Mayo Clinic.

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    High Protein Keto Diet

    As a general overview, the ketogenic diet is low in carbs, high in fat, and moderate in protein however, your protein intake will depend on your goals.

    To sum up our earlier points, dont be afraid to increase your protein intake. Protein consumption may help with weight loss by helping you feel full for longer and may increase lean mass by helping repair and build new muscle tissues.

    Planning a keto high protein diet starts with a general understanding of your individual protein needs.

    A keto calculator can help you get started. The calculator will determine your macronutrient distribution based on your goals, age, weight, and activity level for each day.

    Once you know how much of each macronutrient you need, start planning your protein sources first.

    Choose high-quality proteins source, sticking with organic and hormone-free sources, when possible. Select a combination of high fat and leaner protein choices, like those listed below, for variety and flavor. Fill in the rest of your diet with added fats and low-carb veggies.

    After a week or two, you should begin to feel less hungry once you enter ketosis. If youre still starving all the time, you may not be eating enough protein, or youre eating too many carbs.

    Consider tracking your intake for a few days to monitor how many calories, protein, carbs, and fat youre eating Adjust any macronutrient intake that needs tweaking.

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