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How much protein do you actually need?

Discussion in 'Health & Body' started by SField, Aug 9, 2011.

  1. SField

    SField Senior member

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    In america they seem to recommend incredible amounts of protein, like at least 1g per lb of lean body mass... even in a really lean individual that could easily be like 120-170g... how the fuck do you get that much protein without resorting to shakes? I mean, this is for day to day life not any sort of nutrion plan for weight gain/loss.
     
  2. HomerJ

    HomerJ Senior member

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    In America? Who, American Gladiators? I'm 5'9 150lb, America* recommends 55g.

    *USDA
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2011
  3. fuji

    fuji Senior member

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    I usually do about 1.5g per lb. My breakfast was a pound of steak and tomatoes and my lunch was a pound of stake and 300ml of greek yoghurt and my dinner is gonna be a roast chicken and potatoes. Its not that hard to do, just have to eat a lot of meat and very little of anything else really.
     
  4. Kajak

    Kajak Senior member

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    It's pretty easy on an isocaloric diet. (ie: 33% for each macro)

    Real meat with every meal, and a non-baby proportion of it, should do the trick, or at least get you close enough that one periworkout shake will do the rest.

    Now, the USDA/CDA/etc recommend like .8g/kg or something (.36g/lb), and nitrogen balance studies support this number for sedentary people, up to .7g/lb. However, most strength coaches see better success with numbers higher than this - like 1g/lb to 1.5g/lb. So: test which uses a proxy, or results?
     
  5. SField

    SField Senior member

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    Are you trying to gain a massive amount of weight?

    I had a similar crisis a couple of years ago when I realized that at least if I counted my calories, I was probably way under eating. I like meat a lot but often I'll go many days only eating vegetables and a few fats like cheese and olive oil. I just took stock of what I've been eating again recently and it's definitely under 2000 calories. People told me more protein but jesus I can't just be shoving meat into my face all the time.
     
  6. APK

    APK Senior member

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    Fuji tends to err on the more extreme side since he's an ectomorph trying to put on slabs of mass.

    Even if you're not trying to add some lean mass, though, the recommended amount of protein (50 grams) is ridiculously low. People who actually adhere to that are likely getting the rest of their calories from junk. That doesn't mean you have to go a gram of protein per pound of body weight (assuming you're just trying to maintain a decent looking body). Find a middle ground.

    Another positive for eating more protein is that it's more satiating than carbs and most fats. A thousand calories in a lean meat is going to fill you up a lot more than a 1,000 calories of bread.
     
  7. SField

    SField Senior member

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    Yeah, the part about satiety I understand, but I just don't want to be eating meat all the time. Also, as much as I like beans, if I were to eat them in sufficient quantities that I'd meet even .8/lb I'd be farting all fucking day.
     
  8. APK

    APK Senior member

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    Beans are an overrated source of protein, anyway.
     
  9. Cool The Kid

    Cool The Kid Senior member

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    .7g/lb seems about right for civilians.
     
  10. kilgore

    kilgore Well-Known Member

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    if you live in a developed country and are not vegan, you shouldn't ever have to worry about how much protein you need.
     
  11. TACO_FLAVORED_KISSES

    TACO_FLAVORED_KISSES Senior member

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    Seriosuly, eating too much meat (crappy chicken, red meat) makes me feel like shit. I rather do shakes. Chicken Breast/Seafood are perfectly fine, but pretty expensive.
     
  12. APK

    APK Senior member

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    Chicken breasts aren't expensive. Couple bucks a pound at the most around here.
     
  13. jarude

    jarude Senior member

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    Chicken, beef, cottage cheese, eggs/egg whites. Make friends with your butcher or stock up when the deals come around. Whey shakes are pretty crapulent outside of PWO, and powders (casein or w/e) in general may not agree with people + are expensive + not sustainable. For an average 150lb guy getting 200+g of protein daily to support the demands of lifting and growing is not that hard if you alter what you eat. Considering most people eat at or above maintenance anyways, taking out bad food sources and adding in protein can do great things. Even if you aren't lifting, protein is good.

    Sure, you don't "need" excess protein, just like you don't "need" excess carbs. I hate to quote studies, but

    http://www.jacn.org/content/23/5/373.abstract

    Not a slam dunk but uhh yeah there isn't really a good reason to eat less protein if you are at all concerned with body comp, athletic performance, general well-being or anything past complete apathy towards your body.

    My own daily intake not counting dinner:
    4 eggs, 1 cup cottage cheese, 8oz any given meat, 2 scoops casein totals roughly 150g of protein, and thats not even counting "coincidental" protein from other food sources ie. cheese, bread, rice etc. throw in a PWO shake and more meat for dinner and you're well over 200g.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2011
  14. theom-

    theom- Senior member

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    Greek yogurt man, ~23g of protein per cup. Soooo tasty.
     
  15. HgaleK

    HgaleK Senior member

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    Quick note: protein gives shit satiation. Protein is filling but not satiating, and fat (especially saturated fats) fill and satiate.
     
  16. aheverL

    aheverL Member

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    That would be great!
     
  17. gateslion

    gateslion Well-Known Member

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    +1 on that. If you really want to save on the chicken thing (and you don't care about fresh or frozen) you can go the store and get these 10 or 20 lb bags from the frozen section. Super cheap and easy.

    I think the FDA recommendation or protein is definitely too low. Of course this depends on your goals obviously. Even when they factor in the extra requirements for people doing intense workouts, its still too low, because that number is based on their idea of the requirement to maintain your weight. What BBr wants to just "maintain"? What if you want to grow?

    What I find works out pretty well is to forget the idea of "how much protein do I need" and just go off total calorie requirement. Take you total daily caloric requirement (there are online calculators you can use) then do the math to split it into 40% carb calories, 40% pro calories 20% fat, and the rest just works out. Incidentally, when I did do the math that way, the daily requirement did work out to about 1.5 gram per lb.
     

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