How Much Protein is Enough?
Written by Fritz Nugent
We only need ENOUGH protein, and that amount is debatable. 0.7-1.0 grams per pound of body weight is an estimate for a person who resistance trains. So for a 125-175 lb female, that’s 90-175 grams of protein/day. For a 150-220 lb male, that’s 105-220 grams a day. Notice the large ranges! Will you gain more muscle if you eat more than 1 gram of protein per pound? Not really. So stay within YOUR range.
Moving forward from this math, let’s take a look at how the amount of protein that you eat influences your intake of energy dense calories. Your body prefers to fuel working muscles during exercise with glycogen and fatty acids. Glycogen is a long chain of glucose that is stored in muscles and the liver, and gets replenished by consuming carbohydrates. Fatty acids are obtained through eating fat in our diet.
Now let’s assume that you want to stay the same weight and get leaner (more muscle, less fat, you know the drill…). If you are eating too much protein in your diet, then that decreases the amount of calories that you can obtain from preferred energy sources (fats and carbs). You will have plenty of building blocks to repair damaged tissue and create proteins for body functions, however you will be low on energy. You may experience this as a sluggish feeling, low energy during the day or during training, crankiness, or a lack of willingness to tackle the big things in your life that are challenging.
One more fun fact – by weight, protein is the most expensive nutrient. So overeating here is not going to get you more muscle and can take away valuable energy from your caloric load. So eat just enough and not too much to increase your energy AND decrease your receipts at the grocery store (and save on cooking time, too!).
If you feel like your energy is waning, message me and I can take a look at your nutrition. The details matter, and it’s not too challenging to tweak the details of your specific nutritional approach to optimize your training and life. Invictus Nutrition is here to help you navigate this and more!