Yes, you need protein, but how much?
26 September, 2019
If you want to build muscle, you need to train smart, and 20PerFit’s innovate EMS training system is a great way to get leaner and stronger fast. To build muscle, you need protein, but your body needs it for so much more than that!
Protein is also needed to build skin, hair, repair tissues and to provide essential amino acids that are used for many different chemical processes – including the production of hormones, antibodies and enzymes, as well as the transportation of oxygen. As your body doesn’t use protein as its primary fuel source, it is digested after carbs and can help make you feel fuller and more satisfied.
Sounds good, right? Yes! Protein is essential for good health and strong muscles, but just like any other macronutrient, consuming too much won’t do you any favours.
So what about high protein diets?
There’s no doubt that high protein diets are really trendy right now, and there is some basis behind their popularity: high protein diets like the paleo diet or the keto diet can help with weight loss. But like any other “diet”, the benefits are really only short term. Over the long term, a high protein diet can increase your risk of high cholesterol, heart disease and certain types of cancer. It can also cause bad breath (ew!) as well as constipation or diarrhoea. Not fun.
Many people on high protein diets will also try to avoid carbs altogether. However, this is not ideal to implement over extended periods as your body and brain need carbs to function effectively. So if you avoid carbs, you’ll eventually find yourself with less energy and poor concentration.
More than meat and shakes!
Another reason why high protein diets can be a bad idea is that many people will simply focus on eating lots of meat or try to pound loads of shakes made with whey protein powder to increase their protein intake. Red meat is indeed a fantastic source of protein, but basing your diet around it will mean that you will be missing out on other key nutrients found in foods as well as increase your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Whey is an extremely fast-absorbing, high-quality protein, but consuming too much can upset your stomach and lead to bloating, gas or discomfort. Anyone with existing kidney issues should also check with their doctor before consuming protein shakes regularly.
If you do want to try a high protein diet, try to include other animal sources like lean poultry, fish and eggs, as well as a wide variety of plant-based proteins including nuts, seeds, legumes, quinoa and soy products like tofu or tempeh.
How much protein do I need?
The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend you eat 1-3 servings of protein each day, making up around 15 to 25% of your overall daily energy intake. If you want a more in-depth measurement, women should aim for approximately 0.75g of protein per kilo of body weight, while men should aim for approximately 0.84g of protein per kilo of bodyweight.
Your body can’t store protein, so if you eat too much in one sitting it won’t make your muscles grow any faster – your body will just excrete the protein and store the excess energy you’ve eaten as fat. This means it’s best to spread your protein into smaller servings throughout the day.
Keep reading our blog for more nutritional advice, as well as info on all the benefits that you can enjoy when you train with 20PerFit.