It is important to know how much protein a day is good amount to consume. It doesn’t matter do you want to gain muscle or lose weight, this information is something everybody usually want to know. I have considered that myself. Which is the right amount? What is too much or little?
I’m glad that you have arrived here because everybody should know how to eat correctly and that way stay healthy.
Sometimes it is difficult to eat right amounts of everything. Let me tell you that nobody’s perfect and even if you would start using a meal plan it is impossible to follow them strictly every day.
So it will be up to you to choose between strict meal plans and counting exact amount calories every day or estimate the right amounts and eat more freely. Both of them are acceptable and it is your choice. Of course faster results will be seen with more strict one.
Before talking about the right amount, there is some information about proteins overall. I hope you read the whole text. There might be something totally new and interesting for you.
What proteins are and what they do
First it is very important to understand proteins. Proteins are molecules and also main building blocks of human body. Your body uses them to make muscles, organs, hormones and different types of molecules, just to name a few. So they really are crucial for us to have.
Like almost everything in the world, proteins are made out of something smaller, amino acids. Amino acids form protein chains. Your body produces some of amino acids on its own but most of them we need from food. This is where foods containing protein come in.
We need protein like a house needs bricks. Without getting enough protein our body starts to malfunction.
Here’s an example. If you try to build muscle without getting enough protein, your body starts to break down your own muscle tissue in order to create new. Doesn’t sound very efficient, does it?
And that is just a tiny problem compared to more terrifying things if you really wouldn’t be getting enough protein.
Getting enough protein has been linked beside gaining muscle to losing weight. Eating protein affects the amount of calories lost and it also reduces your appetite. This has been discovered in many studies.
So what kind of food you should eat.
Right types of foods to eat
There are many great foods rich in protein to eat. But it is always important not only to think about amount but the quality.
There are bad foods rich in wrong kind of fat or carbohydrates. Protein doesn’t make an exception.
Eating meat is basically the easiest way to get proteins because animal meat of course equals muscles and they also provide all amino acids we can’t produce ourselves. But as you might know, red meat isn’t really an optimal choice. It isn’t wrong to eat red meat but I recommend reducing using it for the sake of your health and our globe.
Great foods for meat eater to use are for example chicken, fish, eggs and dairy. But there are many other foods to eat also and I’m going to talk about them too.
If you don’t eat meat or if you do, it doesn’t matter because next ones are really good foods to eat.
Basically all kinds of nuts are included. Beans, green peas, lentils, seitan, tofu and oats are great options. Also, many kinds of vegetables contain high amounts of protein. Broccoli, potatoes, spinach, asparagus.
Fruits and berries also contain protein but usually not as much as vegetables. But don’t forget to eat them.
Do I need supplements or not?
Supplements are usually a big question mark for many. The right thing to remember in mind is that never replace a warm meal with supplements.
Main source of your energy including protein comes from food. Reminder, consuming supplements in the place of eating proper meals is not healthy for you. Protein bars and drinks can sometimes be good replacement in a rush but you should never make that a habit.
Usually it is not necessary for most of the people to use protein supplements because you already often get enough of it from food. But if you are very determined in build muscle and it isn’t just twice a week thing for you, I recommend considering them. I myself favor recovery drinks. But again, cocoa is a good one too. Supplements are not necessary for average person.
After starting to use supplements make sure that they don’t contain too much sugar for example. Recovery drinks tend to have sugar a lot. So choose right products.
There are enormous amounts of different supplements. They can be used before, during or after workout. Protein powders are also popular but I don’t use them. Again consider if you really need to use them.
The right amount – does it exist?
There are actually pretty precise estimates about how much protein is good for you.
The amount depends on your body weight and how active you are in your daily life. For example, male who has big body and he is active at work and goes to gym needs much more protein than lighter female who doesn’t exercise at all. That is pretty obvious.
As an average person who exercises normally and hasn’t physically demanding job you should aim for 2 grams of protein per kilogram of your body weight approximately. Or about 1 gram per pound. In practice if you weigh 70 kilograms then you should consume approximately 150 grams of protein a day. It is better to raise the amount a little than to lower it.
For muscle builders it is estimated to consume 2.5-3 grams of protein per kilogram.
For losing weight, approximately 30 % of your overall calories should be coming from proteins. This equals 150 grams per day with a 2000-calorie diet. This is also a good amount for an average person or if you don’t want to count your exact amount of proteins every day.
Just a reminder, these numbers are suggestions and many studies have different results about the right amounts. But these are good estimates that should be usable.
It is also more useful to eat a bit more proteins than too little. Proteins don’t really have the same downsides of over consuming compared to fat for example. But remember, too much is too much.