Protein should you eat per Day depends on many factors, including activity level, age, muscle mass, and overall health.
Protein Intake — How Much Protein Should You Eat per Day?
Protein is one of three essential macronutrients, alongside carbohydrates and fats. These are nutrients that the human body needs in relatively large quantities to function properly.
Most official nutritional organizations recommend a fairly modest protein intake. However, opinions regarding how much protein you need vary.
The Food and Drug Administration suggests that most US adults require around 50 grams (g) of protein daily. However, this total depends of your age, sex, health status, and activity levels.
This article examines the optimal amounts of protein and how lifestyle factors like weight loss, muscle building, and activity levels factor in.
What is Protein Should You Eat per Day, and why is it important?
Proteins are the main building blocks of your body. They’re used to make muscles, tendons, organs, and skin, as well as enzymes, hormones, neurotransmitters, and various molecules that serve many important functions
Proteins consist of smaller molecules called amino acids, which link together like beads on a string. Your body produces some of these amino acids, but you must obtain others known as essential amino acids via your diet.
Different dietary sources of protein have different amino acid compositions. Many lean meats and dairy products contain all the ‘essential’ amino acids, while these are less abundant in a plant-based diet
However, with a small amount of research and nutritional consideration, it is perfectly possible to get all the essential protein elements in good quantities on a plant-based diet. For example, complete vegan protein powders and other supplements are a helpful way to reach protein targets.
Protein is a structural molecule comprising amino acids, many of which your body can’t produce on its own. Animal foods are usually high in protein, providing all essential amino acids
Can aid in weight loss
Protein is important when it comes to losing weight. As you may know, you need to consume fewer calories than you burn to lose weight.
Evidence suggests that eating protein can increase the number of calories you burn by boosting your metabolic rate (calories out) and reducing your appetite (calories in)
A 2020 review and meta-analysis concluded that a long-term high protein diet could increase weight loss, reduce the risk of gaining weight back, and help prevent obesity and obesity-related diseases
A protein intake at around 30% of calories seems to be optimal for weight loss. It boosts your metabolic rate and causes a spontaneous reduction in calorie intake.
Can help you gain muscle and strength
As with most body tissues, muscles are dynamic and constantly being broken down and rebuilt. To gain muscle, your body must synthesize more muscle protein than it breaks down.
As such, people who want to build muscle often eat more protein, as well as exercise. A higher protein intake can help build muscle and strength
For example, a 2018 meta-analysis concluded that dietary protein supplementation significantly increased muscle strength and size following a weight training program in healthy adults.
The authors of the above analysis found that protein intakes of 1.6 g/kg/day were adequate to support muscle building and improve performance.
It’s important to eat enough protein if you want to gain and/or maintain muscle. Most studies suggest that 0.7–1 gram per pound (1.6–2.2 grams per kg) of lean mass are sufficient.