Protein is one of the macronutrients essential for building muscles. There are three macronutrients required to sustain life namely; protein, fats, and carbohydrates. However, we will be protein in this article as to how much proteins we should be consuming to supply the body’s needs.
The most common sources of proteins include animal meats and plant-based such as nuts and legumes.
How Much Proteins The Body Need?
However, there are studies that say high protein intake is bad. In fact, one recent study1 links high protein intake to heart failure.
In this study, the researchers are concern about the potential danger on diets with a high amount of protein. Jyrki Virtanen, Ph.D., the lead researcher says that diets high in protein increase risk of type 2 diabetes, or even death.
So, how much safe amount of protein we should be eating without compromising the body’s requirements? In the study, the findings say that men consuming 109 grams per day have a high risk of heart failure.
The calculator also considers the amount of protein based on how active or sedentary the person is. However, most of the time, protein intake base on the calculator is similar whether you are active or sedentary.
Protein Intake and Weight Loss
When it comes to weight loss, a high metabolism matters. And, protein intake, as mentioned, can boost the body’s metabolism. In fact, there are studies that backed the importance of protein for weight loss purposes2 3 4.
Moreover, protein is the primary requirement for muscle building. This is not to be confused about muscle building with those bodybuilders. However, the more lean muscles mean better and higher metabolism.
And, protein intake is valuable for strength training5 in order to build muscles, which in turn boosts the weight loss results.
Focus on Eating Plant-Based Proteins
There are many sources of proteins but all can be summed up into two categories; animal and plant proteins. Although many experts recommend getting your protein from meat, others prefer plant-based.
For instance, Dr. Andrew Weil, a holistic doctor recommends eating the bulk of your proteins from plants such as whole grains, seeds and nuts, and beans.
Including these plant-based sources not only provide proteins. They also provide the body with dietary fibers, healthy fats, and phyto-compounds that are all helpful in preventing diseases.
Of course, it won’t hurt consuming meat occasionally. While red meats are among the best source of protein, too much of it can be bad5.
Hence, better focus on eating proteins from plant sources. You’ll find a lot of them especially if you focus on eating fresh whole foods produce. Of course, always prefer organic produce. And, always keep in mind that before eating them, wash them well with baking soda.
Even if the fresh produce is labeled organic, some chemicals or pesticides may be used. Baking soda is effective at neutralizing or reducing harmful chemicals. Of course, because baking soda is alkaline, it has many health benefits, as well.
Is It OK To Skip Meat and Only Eat Plant-Based Protein?
This question leads to more questions rather than a direct answer. When you ask a paleo advocate, protein from meat is preferable. On the other hand, asking a vegan, of course, plant-based is preferable.
For us who are just looking for something we can follow, it is somewhat confusing. Both sides have their own argument and the debate goes on. In reality, as long as you are eating healthy and clean while engaging in an active lifestyle, combining both works.
But keep a balance and the balance is not really of an equal amount between meat and plant sources. Dr. Weil is right, favor plant sources for protein while not totally skipping meat as a source of protein.
And speaking of meat, make sure you get the right kind and source. It’s unfortunate that today’s meat production is not as healthy as decades ago. So, look for meat like beef that comes from cows that are grass-fed.
When it comes to chicken, make sure they’re free-range including eggs produce by free-range chickens.