REASONS YOU SHOULD EAT MORE PROTEIN
- It’s good for your bones. Contrary to the myth, animal protein isn’t bad for your bones.
- People who eat more protein tend to keep more bone mass as they age, and have a lower risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
- This is super important for ladies, as we are more likely to encounter osteoporosis after menopause. Eating enough protein and lifting weights are a good way to keep that from happening.
- Dietary protein boosts your metabolism.
- Your body uses calories to digest and use the nutrients in our food, this is called the thermic effect of food.
- Protein has a higher thermic effect than fat or carbs, so this can help boost your metabolism and make your body burn more calories… on average, that number could increase by 80-100 calories per day
- Eating protein will help decrease cravings.
- Cravings suck. The best way to deal with them is by keeping them from happening in the first place.
- One study in men showed that increasing protein to 25% of daily intake reduced cravings for late night snacks by 60%.
- Having a high protein breakfast has the same effect, and will keep you full until lunch.
- Your body repairs more efficiently when you feed it enough protein.
- Protein is the main building block of our tissues and organs. Numerous studies have said that eating more protein after injury can help speed up your recovery.
- It helps lower your blood pressure.
- High blood pressure causes heart attacks, strokes, and kidney disease… higher protein intake has been linked to lower blood pressure.
- Increased protein lowered systolic and diastolic blood pressure, according to one study. It also lowered LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, according to another.
- Won’t hurt your kidneys.
- The rumor that high protein intake hurts your kidneys isn’t true, it’s pretty well documented that as long as you don’t have kidney disease, a high protein diet won’t harm you.
- If you eat too much, it will just exit your body via urine.
PROTEIN PROMOTING MUSCLE GROWTH
- It’s well documented that protein helps you gain muscle, we could quote you a million different studies.
- Protein repairs muscle tissue – when muscle tissue is torn then repaired, it becomes stronger.
- When muscles are exercised to the point of momentary fatigue, which means you can’t do another rep, protein comes in to save the day. Transporting cells, serving as enzymes to perform various physiological processes, and acting as hormones.
- Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and they do a lot of heavy lifting when it comes to your body chemistry.
- We covered this briefly in “WTF is a Macro,” but there are 20 amino acids… four are non-essential, nine are essential, and eight are conditional.
- Taking amino acids with training and eating enough protein can increase muscle protein synthesis, which is a good thing.
- While protein’s main role is to repair tissue, it can also be used to produce energy for your muscles when other sources of ATP like fats and carbs aren’t available.
- Gluco-neo-genesis is the term that is used when protein is converted to glycogen for ATP… this only happens as the result of moderate-to-high intensity activity for a long period of time.
- Sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade have sugar and sodium to help keep gluco-neo-genesis from happening… because you’d rather have that protein be used for muscle building, and not as fuel.
HOW MUCH PROTEIN YOU NEED A DAY
- 15-30% of your daily intake should be protein. Depending on your activity level, you’ll fall somewhere in that range.
- Eat your protein in smaller portions throughout the day, it will keep you feeling full.
- A good rule of thumb is three meals and two snacks, each with a proportionate serving of protein, depending on your daily requirements.
- Almost half of the protein in your body is in muscle tissue.
- The rest of it is in skin, bone, and organs including your kidneys and liver.
- If you’re chasing gains; lean meat, eggs, chicken, fish, and cheese are your friends.
- Don’t worry, vegetarian and vegan friends! Soy is the only plant based protein that has all eight essential amino acids.
- Try to get your protein from whole foods when possible, don’t make shakes your main source of protein.
Protein: filling, useful, tasty, and won’t wreck your kidneys. If you’ve got any questions about protein, carbs, fat, or anything else… hit us up – hello at meathead test kitchen dot com. Find us on social media – meathead sadie and meathead sausha on IG… and find the show on IG and FB at meathead test kitchen, and on twitter, @MTKstaff.