We’re Not Eating Enough Protein

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The old advice to restrict the amount of fat and meat you consume (mostly because meat also contained fat) is slowly but surely being challenged by an ever-increasing amount of research.

We’re already seeing recommendations to the USDA to remove the limits on dietary fat in order to reverse the damaging health trends this ban has caused. A new study published in Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism is also confirming that the recommended daily amounts of protein are also too low. Aside from the fact that most sources of quality protein (which you can find in last week’s article) also contain important vitamins and minerals, the study found that increasing the amount of protein consumed at each meal:

  • Helped preserve muscle loss in aging populations
  • Increased protein synthesis (building muscle and tissue) for 24 hours
  • Prevented muscle loss and improved fat loss during diets (as we’ve previously mentioned with the Clean Protein Weight Loss Formula).

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How much protein should you eat?

The old recommendation was about 46 grams of protein a day for women and about 56 grams per day for men. This study concluded that 25 to 35 grams per meal was an ideal amount for most people, so as you can see, it’s not a huge increase (so don’t go overboard), but it is about a 50 percent increase. The study also found that while dieting, at least 25 percent of your daily calories should come from protein in order to stimulate fat loss and preserve muscle mass.

I’ve also seen recommendations as high 1 gram of protein for every pound of lean bodyweight (don’t count your body fat in that total). The one thing that all of these recommendations agree on, is that this extra protein is most beneficial in the presence of exercise. Increasing your protein intake alone will help, but in this most current study, they found that a diet composed of at least 25 percent protein increased weight loss by 6 pounds when combined with exercise.

If you want to see how to best incorporate protein into your workout routine, you can check out the Fueling Workouts series to learn that when you eat can be just as important as what you eat. You can also check out the Clean Protein Weight Loss Formula to learn that you can eat more than just meat and diary in order to get high-quality protein into your diet.

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