Do you keep track of your protein intake?
I don’t and who want’s to track it anyway!? Protein intake seems to be a widely debated topic among many health “experts” in the field. Everyone is different depending on their training regimen and/or overall lifestyle goals.
So let me give you some basic guidelines to keep in mind when it comes to how much daily protein to intake:
- The Recommended Daily Allowance for a sedentary adult is 0.8 g/kg per day (0.36g/lb). 1
- For a 155 lbs man, this is about 56 grams of protein. For reference, this would be about 3 ounces of chicken, 3 ounces of tuna, a glass of milk and 1/2 cup of beans. That would be the protein needed for the entire day!
- If you’re of healthy weight, active, and wish to keep your weight, aim for 1.4–2.2 g/kg (0.64–1.00 g/lb). 2
- If you’re of healthy weight, active, and wish to build muscle, aim for 1.4–3.3 g/kg (0.64–1.50 g/lb). 2
- If you’re overweight or obese, aim for 1.2–1.5 g/kg (0.54–0.68 g/lb).
*If you are pregnant or breast feeding or a child still growing, then protein requirements are higher because you are trying to add protein to your body.
The main thing you want to keep in mind regarding protein is that we have 9 essential amino acids that we must get from our diet!
Benefits of these amino acids are the following…
- Enhance Weight Loss 3
- Preserve Muscle Mass 4
- Improve Exercise Performance 5
- Boost Mood 6
- Promote Better Sleep 7
10 Foods High in Essential Amino Acids (grass fed/organic if possible)
- Fermented Soy (Natto and Tempeh)
Another way to get these essential amino acids is collagen, opt for hydrolyzed collagen products like collagen peptides to optimize the bio-availability and digestion of your supplement. Also, bone broth is another great way to get amino acids as well.
Bottom line – Unless you are training for something specific I don’t believe you need to track your protein intake. Just make sure you are getting a good variety of amino acids in your diet to maintain overall health. A deficiency in any of the key essential amino acids can cause serious side effects that affect nearly every aspect of health, including:
- Dry skin
- Splitting hair
- Hair loss
- Brittle nails
- Thinning hair
- Decreased muscle mass
- Impaired growth in children
- Increased appetite
- Decreased immune function
- Bone loss
- Puffiness and swelling
Hope this gives you a better understanding of protein intake and essential amino acids.
Feel free to reply regarding any questions!
Have a great day!
P.S. Has your weight loss efforts plateaued? Check out The Simple Intermittent Fasting Journal to get you back on track!!