How To Measure How Much Protein You Need

How Much Protein Do You Need To Survive

How Much Protein Do I Need To Build Muscle? | Nutritionist Explains… | Myprotein

In order to merely survive and keep your bodys insides functioning, you need approximately 0.37 grams of protein per pound of body weight. For the metric system people, thats 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight.

This means a woman weighing 150 pounds, or 68kg, needs approximately 55g of protein.

Consider that the bare minimum. If you want to think clearly, move around, or build up immunity, you need more.

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.

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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Can Too Much Protein Make You Fat

Weight Gain

When we consume excessive amounts of protein, depending on the ease of access to other forms of energy, the body could convert the protein into sugar, stored as fat. When people attempt to increase their protein intake, they often raise their overall calorie intake, which leads to weight gain.

How To Actually Calculate Your Protein Needs

How Much Protein Should I Eat Per Day: The Fitness Guide ...

Perhaps, then, the best way to measure how much protein you need to consume daily is based on lean body mass, or everything in your body that isnt fat. This could provide a more accurate figure than focusing on just your total weight.

Of course, if youre a fitness model sitting comfortably at four per cent body fat, then theres obviously not going to be much difference whether protein intake is expressed relative to your weight or lean body mass. For the average guy, however, it’s a considerably different story. They’re likely to be carrying more weight around their midriff and have a higher body-fat percentage.

On the flipside, let’s look at an obese man who weighs 135kg. In this case, it would be unwise to base his protein intake on his total bodyweight. Using the 2g of protein per kg, he’ll be eating a whopping 270g protein on a daily basis.

Needless to say, our hypothetical overweight man definitely doesnt need to be eating the equivalent of 10 chicken breasts a day, even if he’s looking to build muscle. In fact, most research shows little benefit to consuming more than 2.2g of protein per kg of lean body mass.

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Are You Eating Too Much Protein

While we want you to get enough protein in you diet, you can also have too much of a good thing, and if you eat too much protein, you may be doing more harm than good. People that eat very high protein diets have a higher risk of kidney stones, while a high protein diet that contains lots of red meat and higher amounts of saturated fat has been linked to a higher risk of heart disease and colon cancer.

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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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Quick Nutrition Check For Protein

Protein is found in many foods and is needed to keep you healthy. Your body uses protein to:

  • Provide building blocks for growth and for repairing cells like those in your muscles, skin, and nails.
  • Make enzymes and hormones, which carry out key body functions.

Protein is found in peas, beans and lentils, nuts and seeds and their butters, soy products like tofu and soy beverage, meats, fish, poultry, eggs, milk, cheese, and yogurt. Grains, vegetables, and fruit also add small amounts of protein to your diet. Eating protein from a wide variety of food sources will help you meet your needs for nutrients like iron, zinc, vitamin B12 and calcium.

Plan your meals based on Canadas Food Guide

  • Include protein at all your meals.

  • Fill ¼ of your plate with protein foods
  • Choose plant-based protein foods more often
  • This resource will help you to check if you get enough protein in your diet.

    How Much Protein Per Day To Lose Weight

    How much protein do you need per day?

    If you want to lose weight, aim for a daily protein intake between 1.6 and 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight . Athletes and heavy exercisers should consume 2.2-3.4 grams of protein per kilogram if aiming for weight loss.

    My practical recommendation to people is that if you carry a BMI of over 30 or a body fat percentage above 25-30% it makes more sense to base your protein recommendations off of your goal weight.

    For the correct amount of protein to gain muscle, check this resource out.

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    How Do You Calculate How Much Protein You Need A Day

  • 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

    How Much Protein Do I Need 3 Easy Ways To Calculate

      Kim Yawitz, RD

      Have you ever noticed how fitness enthusiasts are so gung ho about protein shakes, egg whites, and ground turkey? Its because dietary protein is really important for building muscle and losing fat! Now, I do think some meatheads take the protein fixation a bit too far, but I can also tell you that lots of people dont get enough protein. If youre wondering, How much protein do I need in a day? youve come to the right place.

      In this post, Im going to share three easy ways to know how much protein you need and share the pros and cons of each approach so that you can better determine how to estimate your own protein needs.

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      Protein Helps You Feel Full Longer

      One of the biggest things that impedes weight loss is hunger.

      People are far less likely to stick with a nutrition or diet plan if they experience high levels of hunger.

      Protein is the most satiating of all the macronutrients .

      Several different lines of research have all pointed to the same thing: higher protein intakes tend to provide more satiety and less hunger.

      For example, in one study, high protein snacks allowed people to go longer between eating and also caused them to eat less at subsequent meals .

      Another study showed that including protein into a glass of water decreased hunger compared to water alone .

      Depending on the source of protein, there does appear to be minor differences in the exact amount of satiety that protein provides, however these differences are minor and dont really make a meaningful impact for most people .

      Currently, there is no consensus on the optimal level of daily protein intake in ones diet with regard to stay full. However, roughly 1.8 – 2.9 grams of protein per kilogram daily appears to provide substantial benefit on satiety .

      Protein Preserves Lean Body Mass

      How Much Protein A Day To Build Muscle Transparent Labs

      In addition, protein has another benefit on weight loss: it helps preserve lean body mass during periods of caloric restriction.

      One study compared the effect of low protein intake to high protein intake on lean body mass over a short term caloric deficit. On average, the low protein group lost about 1.6 kilograms of muscle mass while the high protein group only lost 0.3 kg of muscle mass .

      Another similar study compared 0.8 g/kg per day against 1.6 g/kg per day and 2.4 g/kg per day and found that the two higher intakes spared more lean body mass than the 0.8 g/kg per day diet. They also found that there was no real benefit to 2.4 g/kg per day over 1.6 g/kg per day .

      Currently, most evidence suggests that ~1.6 grams of protein per kilogram, or .73 grams of protein per pound is a recommended daily target for protein intake to spare lean body mass loss during periods of weight loss.

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      Here’s How To Calculate How Much Protein You Need Each Day

      including a perfect day of protein on a plate.

      How much protein is too much? Image: iStock

      Breaking down nutritional info can feel like rocket science, but this excerpt from the CSIRO Women’s Health & Nutrition Guide will show you exactly how to decode it.

      Our body’s requirement for protein varies at different life stages. For women, protein needs are highest during childhood and adolescence, as well as during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The Australian recommended dietary intakes for protein are a daily average of 0.75 grams of protein for each kilogram of body weight for women 19-70 years of age.

      However, recent research and expert committees conclude that healthy adults might benefit from a higher daily average protein intake of between 1.2 to 1.6 grams of protein for each kilogram of body weight.

      Like what you see? Sign up to our newsletter for more stories like this.

      Let’s take a look at an example. Samara weighs 70 kg. What does 1.2-1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight look like for her?

      • Samara’s lowest calculation: 1.2g of protein X 70kg body weight = 84 grams of protein
      • Samara’s highest calculation: 1.6g of protein X 70kg body weight = 112 grams of protein

      So Samara should aim for approximately 84-112 grams of protein per day.

      Yoghurt has LOTS of protein. Photo: iStock

      How Much Protein Is Too Much Find Out Here

      How much protein a day do I need? Often, its because were trying to lose weight or trying out vegetarian or vegan options that this important question pops into our mind. But sometimes, its because of a food allergy or a challenging chronic illness. Or, maybe we just want to exercise our options. We are constantly trying to improve our lives and our health by learning more about the food we eat, and understanding the amount of protein we need is one way to do that.

      So, is there an optimal amount? How much protein is too much, if there is such a thing? If so, what is it? And are there better proteins than others? We are going to help you answer those questions and many others. We have done scientific research to help take the guesswork out of these questions, so you can enjoy your diet, make adjustments, and live a healthier life.

      Page Contents…

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        How Much Protein You Need In Order To Lose Weight And Gain Muscle According To Dietitians

        • Dietitians recommend eating 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight or 0.35 grams per pound.

        • Up your protein intake to 1.2-2 grams per kilogram of bodyweight if you want to build muscle.

        • Protein should make up at least 10% to 20% of your calories if you are looking to lose weight.

        Protein is a nutrient that’s essential for maintaining and building muscle.

        How much protein you need to eat each day depends on several factors, like your age, weight, and level of physical activity.

        Here’s how to calculate how much protein you need and which foods contain the most.

        How Much Protein For Weight Loss

        How Much Protein Do You Need?

        If you’re on a weight-loss diet that aims to increase your daily protein intake, you may need to define your needs differently, especially if exercise is part of your weight loss plan. ACSM suggests increasing your daily protein intake during exercise to a few grams of protein per pound of body weight.

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        How To Get Enough Protein

        Now that you have an estimate of the amount of protein you need, the last question to answer is: how do I eat all this protein?

        Our #1 recommendation is to get protein from whole foods whenever possible. This will ensure you get plenty of vitamins and minerals.

        A serving of protein is about the size and thickness of your palm:

        Protein can come from any number of sources, including:

        • Meat .
        • Fish and shellfish .
        • Legumes .

        Not a meat-eater? Read our massive plant-based guide!

        However, if youre aiming for the higher ranges of protein intake you might need to supplement.

        Personally, I drink a protein shake daily to help me reach my goals.

        Some protein supplements to consider:

      • Whey protein powder, a milk byproduct widely used as a protein supplement.
      • Egg-based protein powders
      • Pea protein powder, a popular supplement in the plant-based community.
      • Check out The Ultimate Protein Shake Guide for more protein powder recommendations and recipes on how to make delicious smoothies.

        Whether through whole foods or supplements, protein should be a main part of every meal you eat. Its one of our top recommendations for being a healthy nerd.

        Calculate your protein needs, determine the proper portion sizes to reach your target, and see how you feel!

        You can always adjust up or down based on your results.

        If you need any help along the way, we got you.

        Here are three ways to continue your journey with Nerd Fitness.

        Try your free trial right here:

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        Percentage Of Total Calories

        Another way to calculate how much protein you need is by using daily calorie intake and the percentage of calories that will come from protein.

        First, determine how many calories your body needs each day to maintain your current weight:

        Next, decide what percentage of your diet will come from protein. The percentage you choose will be based on your goals, fitness level, age, body type, and metabolic rate. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-202 recommend that protein account for somewhere between 10% and 35% for adults.

        Multiply that percentage by the total number of calories your body needs for the day to determine total daily calories from protein.

        Finally, divide that number by 4.

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