Explained: Protein

The word protein is often thrown around as the word to know in fitness and health. However so many people ask and do not know what it is and what the benefits are for our bodies to absorb enough protein.

So what actually is it?

Protein is made up of small compounds of amino acids, the body generally needs to absorb 22 types of amino acids to function properly. The human body can create all but 9 types by itself, so it relies on gaining the rest of them from rich protein foods.

Why does our body need protein?

Protein helps to repair and maintain our bodies muscles and growth. More protein is needing by the body when growing, pregnant, injured, active or people who have undergone surgery.

How much should we have a day?

Typically we should have 60 grams of protein per day or 2 grams per 1 Kilogram of body weight. However the body can only absorb about 20-30 grams of protein at once, so the daily intake should be balanced out throughout the day to ensure all is absorbed. Protein can be found from:

  • Chicken/Turkey/other lean meats
  • Soya
  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • Peanut Butter
  • Protein powders
  • Greek yoghurt
  • Cheese (mainly Mozzerrella)
  • Nuts
  • Seafood
  • Beans

About 20/30 grams of Protein should be consumed within half an hour after exercise. This helps to build muscles by repairing them and can help the fat burning affect last a lot longer.

Are there any risks with consuming too much?

If you consume 2.5 grams of protein per 1 kilogram of body weight then you are more at risk of dehydration, fatigue, having too many calories and having higher levels of calcium in urine. However these are fairly rare.

If you consume an extremely high amount of protein of 200-400 grams in a day then you are at risk of exceeding the livers capability to convert unneeded nitrogen to urea. This can lead to nausea, diarrhea and other effects.

If you have any more questions on protein please do not hesitate to ask!

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Love Becca x