One of the most frequent questions we receive at Jax Nutrition regarding diet and nutrition is, "How much protein do I need each day?"
Unfortunately, there isn't just one answer that can cover this question single-handedly. There are several factorsthat can greatly affect the perfect amount of protein for you to consume each day. And, even when taking each of these factors into account, the answer you receive is more likely to be a range for the amount of protein, not one specific number.
If you're wondering what some of the factors are that can affect the amount of protein that you should have in your diet, the most common ones are:
Your level of activity. Generally speaking, the more active you are, the more protein is recommended.
The current status of your health. It's always extremely important to keep your health status in mind if you're considering any major dietary changes.
Any pre-existing medical conditions you may have. Problems such as renal disease have an impact on the amount of protein intake that's considered healthy for your specific needs.
Certain lifestyle choices. If you are a vegetarian, vegan, etc; this can influence your recommended daily intake of protein.
General Recommendations for Protein Intake
But with all of these things to keep in mind, when it comes to determining how much is right for you, where do you begin? The answer to that question is much easier, because we can give you a general guide to help you determine the amount of protein that you should eat each day. Placing yourself into one of the following categories will give you a range for the amount of protein you need.
If you're highly athletic, very active, trying to lose some extra body fat, and/or want to preserve the amount of lean muscle mass you have already acquired: the recommended target range for your daily protein intake is 1.5-2.2 g/kg, or 0.68-1 g/lb, body weight.
If you're not quite so active and you're not trying to change your body composition very much, then the recommended target for your daily protein intake is a minimum of .08 g/kg, or 0.50 g/lb, body weight.
Protein During Weight Loss
For those of you who are focused on weight loss, you should know that the amount of protein you consume in your diet every day can play a major role in reaching your health goals. Athletes as well as people who are overweight have shown a great improvement in the overall composition of their bodies while consuming a high protein diet, while also preserving lean muscle mass. If you're interested in increasing the amount of protein in your diet to assist with your weight loss, keep in mind that the amount most commonly recommended is approximately two times the amount recommended for the general public. To preserve your lean body mass during lowered calorie intakes that result from dieting, the recommended target for your daily protein intake is 1.8 g/kg.
We hope that this article has helped you understand how to begin determining the healthiest amount of daily protein intake for you, and also reminded you of a few important factors to keep in mind on your road to health and happiness. At Jax Nutrition, we strive to always maintain an atmosphere of inspiration and information to help you reach all of your fitness and wellness goals.