How Much Protein Per Body Weight

How Much Protein Is Really Enough

The Science Behind My High Protein Diet (How Much Per Day For Muscle Growth & Fat Loss?)

Popular belief is that in order to build muscle you must consume up to 1.0g of protein per pound of bodyweight. That might seem high to some of you, and for others it might seem too low. So, how much protein should you eat per day to build muscle? Really, it depends.

Research shows that the average trainee looking to build muscle can benefit from getting between 0.6g to 1.1g of protein per pound of bodyweight. The exact amount thats right for you will depend on your goals, genetics, and the rest of your diet, but aiming to hit between those targets should be sufficient for most people.2

For example, a relatively fit 180lb man should aim to consume between 108g and 198g of protein daily for muscle gain.2

If you are overweight and trying to reduce your body fat, I recommend that you aim to consume your target bodyweight in grams of protein. For instance, if a 225lb man wants to reduce his bodyweight to 180lbs through proper training and nutrition, he should consume a base of 180g of protein per day.4 At the same time, lowering your carbohydrate and fat intake is extremely important as well!

The Protein Needs Of Athletes

According to the Institute of Medicine, 10 35% of our daily calories should come from protein. Thats not very helpful for us, though.

10 35% is quite a range to choose from, and even if we went with 35%, if our daily calorie intake is too low, we wont get enough protein, and if its too high, well eat more than we need.

So lets look at some of the clinical research available on protein needs, and specifically with athletes.

First, lets look at research conducted by McMaster University.

According to their paper, protein intake of 1.3 1.8 grams per kilogram of body weight is adequate for stimulating maximal protein synthesis. They note, however, that more protein might be needed in the case of frequent and/or high-intensity training, and in the case of dieting to lose fat .

A widely cited study conducted by The University of Western Ontario concluded the same: 1.6 1.8 grams per kilogram of body weight might be enough for athletes, but higher intakes may also be warranted depending on a wide variety of factors including energy intake, carbohydrate availability, exercise intensity, duration and type, dietary protein quality, training history, gender, age, timing of nutrient intake, and more.

As you can see, the topic is actually quite complex, and there may not be a one-size-fits-all solution.

Gym lore can actually lend some insight here, and it agrees with the above findings.

What Should You Do

Research on how much protein is the optimal amount to eat for good health is ongoing, and is far from settled. The value of high-protein diets for weight loss or cardiovascular health, for example, remains controversial.

Before you start ramping up your daily protein intake, there are a few important things to consider. For one, dont read get more protein as eat more meat. Beef, poultry, and pork can certainly provide high-quality protein, but so can many plant foods including whole grains, beans and other legumes, nuts, and vegetables. The table below provides some healthier sources of protein.

Its also important to consider the protein package the fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that invariably come along with protein. Aim for protein sources low in saturated fat and processed carbohydrates and rich in many nutrients.

One more thing: If you increase protein, dietary arithmetic demands that you eat less of other things to keep your daily calorie intake steady. The switches you make can affect your nutrition, for better or for worse. For example, eating more protein instead of low-quality refined carbohydrates, like white bread and sweets, is a healthy choice though how healthy the choice is also depends on the total protein package.

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So Whats The Takeaway Here Should You Go Lower Protein

If you think Im some weak fuck for cutting my protein, fine.

Im not telling you to dramatically cut your protein intake.

Your life, your rules.

Im just saying, if youre sick and tired of all this protein talk and can live with being slightly less muscular, try cutting back to the 0.6 gram range.

But make sure to keep everything else the same your workouts, training intensity, sleep, fruit/veggie intake, any vital non-protein supplements, water intake, etc

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Do it for 30 days and have an open mind about it.

If you really cant live with yourself after the 30 days because your arms shrunk by 1/4 of an inch and you lost all sense of self-worth, then you could always bump back up your protein.

But I think youll be pleasantly surprised by how little youll actually lose and how much youll gain.

How Do You Calculate How Much Protein You Need A Day

Overweight people looking to get fit: do they also need 1.8 g/kg of ...
  • How Do You Calculate How Much Protein You Need a Day? Center
  • Your daily protein requirements are mainly determined by factors, such as your weight, age, gender, height, and physical activity.

    According to the National Academy of Medicine

    • All adults must consume at least 0.8 grams of protein daily per 2.2 pounds of their body weight.
    • This is the amount of protein required for a sedentary lifestyle .
    • Thus, for an adult who weighs 132 pounds and has a sedentary lifestyle, their protein requirement will be equal to 48 grams of protein a day .

    The requirement will fluctuate if you are an athlete, pregnant, recovering from an illness, attempting weight loss, or a teenager. Certain conditions, such as kidney disease, may require you to lower your protein intake, while others may require a high protein intake.

    Calculate protein requirement by weight

    Another way to calculate your minimum daily protein requirement is by:

    • Dividing your weight into pounds by 20 and multiplying it by seven.
    • You need just a little more than seven grams of protein for every 20 pounds of your body weight.
    • Thus, for someone weighing 200 pounds, the protein requirement will be 70 grams each day.
  • You can also determine your protein requirement by multiplying your weight in pounds by 0.36.
  • Thus, for an adult weighing 150 pounds, the approximate protein requirement will be 54 grams.
  • Calculate protein requirement by calorie intake

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    Optimal Daily Protein Intake For Vegetarians And Vegans

    The protein requirements discussed so far were based on studies that used animal-based protein supplements, such as whey or egg protein supplements, or were conducted mostly in omnivores. There is no reason to believe that people who get their protein mostly or entirely from plants have inherently different protein requirements, but since plant-based proteins tend to be lower in quality than animal-based proteins, if you obtain most of your protein from plants you will need to pay attention not just to the amount of protein you eat but also to the quality of that protein.

    A proteins quality is determined by its digestibility and amino acid profile.

    Digestibility matters because if you dont digest and absorb some of the protein you eat, then it may as well not have been eaten. Animal-based proteins consistently demonstrate a digestibility rate higher than 90%, whereas proteins from the best plant-based sources show a digestibility rate of 6080%.

    Why Protein Is Important For Building Muscle

    To build muscle, your body needs to synthesise more muscle protein than it breaks down, which is why anyone looking to build muscle needs to make sure they’re getting enough protein, as well as making sure the work they’re doing in the weights room is right too.

    It’s not just us saying that, there’s a body of research that confirms the part protein plays in building muscle. A study published in the journal Nutrients, for example, found that “protein intake was shown to promote additional gains in lean body mass beyond those observed with resistance exercise alone.”

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    What Is The Maximum Amount Of Protein I Can Absorb Per Day

    As is the case with the amount of protein that can be absorbed during one meal, the maximum amount of protein that can be absorbed per day varies depending on a persons gender, age, weight, and activity level. In general, the research shows that the total daily protein intake for people attempting to maximize gains in muscle size and strength should take in approximately 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. An easy way to break up this amount into meals is to consume 0.4 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per meal and consume four meals per day.

    However, some people may be able to absorb more protein throughout the day. A meta-analysis on protein supplementation reported a 95 percent confidence interval for protein intake of 2.2 grams per kilogram of body weight in young male bodybuilders, so people should not automatically assume that they can only take in 1.6 grams per kilogram of body weight. However, the 1.6 grams per kilogram guideline is well-suited to people who have an average activity level and do not have increased protein needs.

    Other Circumstances That Can Increase Protein Needs

    How Much Protein Do We Need Per Day? Weight Loss & Muscle Building

    Regardless of muscle mass and physique goals, those who are physically active need more protein than those who are sedentary.

    If your job is physically demanding or you walk a lot, run, swim, or do any sort of exercise, you need to eat more protein.

    Endurance athletes also need significant amounts of protein about 0.50.65 grams per pound of body weight (

    This can help prevent osteoporosis and sarcopenia, both of which are significant problems among older adults.

    People recovering from injuries may likewise need more protein .


    People who are physically active, as well as older adults and those recovering from injuries, have significantly increased protein requirements.

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    How Much Protein Do You Need Per Day

    As with most things in nutrition, theres no simple answer. Your ideal intake of calories and protein depends on your health, body composition, main goal, and the type, intensity, duration, and frequency of your physical activity. And even taking all this into account, youll end up with a starting number, which youll need to adjust through self-experimentation.

    Tip: Calculating your caloric needs

    Your height, weight, age, and level of physical activity all contribute to your caloric needs. There are many calorie calculators out there, but the NIH Body Weight Planner stands out. It has been tested and validated against real-world data and can estimate the number of calories you need to reach then maintain a specific weight.

    Calorie-wise, there are only three types of diets:

    Daily protein requirements are expressed in grams, either per kilogram of body weight or per pound of body weight . Ranges in the table below reflect known individual variances.

    Maintenance: eucaloric diet | Muscle gain: eucaloric diet or hypercaloric diet | Fat loss: hypocaloric diet | * Grams per kilogram of body weight

    Also, note that

    Tip: Calculating your protein needs

    Intermediate: The Percentage Of Calories Method

    Does the Palm Method feel a little too chill for you?

    No biggie! You can also estimate your protein needs based on your target calorie intake. I recommend 25-30% of calories for active adults.

    Heres how to do it:

  • Multiply your daily calorie goal by 0.25 or 0.3
  • Divide that number by 4, as protein has 4 calories per gram.
  • The quotient is your daily protein target.
  • Want to see that in action? Lets assume youre aiming for 1600 calories per day, with 30% of calories from protein:

    1600*0.3 = 480480/4=120

    Youre aiming for 120 grams of protein per day .

    The primary upsides are that this approach promotes a balanced diet, and its also a bit more precise than the hand method.

    But, there are a couple of downsides. First, the percentage approach assumes you are eating at an appropriate calorie level for your height, weight, age, and activity level. Eating too much will result in weight gain while eating too little could result in muscle loss.

    And from a practical standpoint, the percentage method means that youll likely need to track calories and protein intake in an app like MyFitnessPal. Tracking can be very effective for weight loss, but its not for everyone. Its tedious, it can lead to food obsession, and lots of people havent mastered the basics enough to really do macros well.

    That said, the percentage method is a decent option if you have some experience manipulating your calorie and nutrient intake.

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    How Much Protein Do I Need A Day A No

    When it comes to the most-talked-about nutrient, protein, the majority of questions concern our consumption and whether were getting enough of it per day. We get it, gym culture has made large swathes of society more active than ever, fuelling peoples thirst for knowledge in all things muscle. And when it comes to muscle, protein is important.

    The macronutrient works within every cell of your body and is essential for our muscle growth, strength, and repair. It doesnt matter how much you bench press from the off, if youre not getting enough protein in your diet then youre not going to see improving results.

    Not enough protein in your diet reduces lean body mass, muscle strength, and function. It can also cause muscle cramping, weakness, and soreness. Your body will take protein from muscle tissue and use it as energy to support other vital body functions when protein is low.

    This is not good. It eventually leads to muscle wasting and atrophy. So even if youre not a regular gym bunny, it pays to make sure youre getting enough protein per day to keep your body working the way it should.

    What Is The Maximum Amount Of Protein I Can Absorb Per Meal

    Get the Most From Your Workouts

    The topic of how much protein to consume at any given meal is regularly discussed, particularly in bodybuilding circles. While it might seem like eating more protein is always better, theres only so much that your body can actively use and absorb. The most commonly referenced intake recommendation is 25 to 35 grams of protein per meal.

    However, many different variables impact the maximum amount of protein that a person can absorb per meal. Your age, gender, muscle mass, and other factors play a role in determining how much protein your body can absorb per meal, as does how the protein is consumed.

    A study published in 2015 found that muscle protein synthesis is optimally stimulated at an amount of 0.4 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per meal. However, some people may be able to optimally use more or less protein depending on their anatomy and other factors.

    Based on a recommended intake amount of 0.4 grams or protein per kilogram of body weight per meal, a person weighing 150 pounds would take in about 27 grams of protein for optimum protein synthesis at a meal, while a 200 pound individual would take in 36 grams of protein. However, a person weighing 120 pounds would take in less than 22 grams. Therefore, its important to make sure that you are eating the appropriate amount of protein for your weight and goals.

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    When To Eat Protein

    Timing your protein hits is vital to optimise your gains. Your body cant process more than 25 to 35g of protein per serving, so scoffing six steaks at dinner is a waste. Its not about having shedloads all at once, say Reid. And anyway, your most important protein hit is the one after your gym session.

    You want that immediate stimulus, says Reid. Within the 30-minute window post-workout youre looking to optimise the repair and regeneration process. Thats when you want rapidly-absorbed whey protein, either by chugging a shake or a pint of milk. Reid also recommends a skinny latte for a pre-gym boost: Youve got the caffeine kick, the protein in the milk and if you try a banana with it, a bit of carbohydrate.Pairing your protein with carbs is good sense. After exercise your body produces the stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol, which break down proteins, fats and sugars. When theyre coursing through you, youre not building muscle. When you get some recovery nutrition in it counters those stress hormones, says Reid, switching your body back into repair mode and kickstarting growth.

    Protein Intake How Much Protein Should You Eat Per Day

    Few nutrients are as important as protein. Not getting enough of it will affect your health and body composition.

    However, opinions regarding how much protein you need vary.

    Most official nutritional organizations recommend a fairly modest protein intake.

    The DRI is 0.36 grams of protein per pound of body weight.

    This amounts to:

    • 56 grams per day for the average sedentary man
    • 46 grams per day for the average sedentary woman

    This may be enough to prevent deficiency, but the amount you need depends on many factors, including your activity level, age, muscle mass, physique goals, and overall health.

    This article examines the optimal amounts of protein and how lifestyle factors like weight loss, muscle building, and activity levels factor in.

    Proteins are the main building blocks of your body. Theyre used to make muscles, tendons, organs, and skin, as well as enzymes, hormones, neurotransmitters, and various molecules that serve many important functions.

    Proteins consist of smaller molecules called amino acids, which link together like beads on a string. These linked amino acids form long protein chains, which then fold into complex shapes.

    Your body produces some of these amino acids, but you must obtain others known as essential amino acids via your diet.

    Protein is not only about quantity but also quality.

    If youre eating animal products like meat, fish, eggs, or dairy every day, youre likely getting enough protein.

    Protein is important when it comes to losing weight.

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