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WaveHunter

How much protein do you REALLY need?

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I've been doing a lot of thinking and reading on this subject lately.  In the past I've always subscribed to the notion that at least 1 gram per pound of lean mass (2.2 grams per kg) was the acceptable rule of thumb if you are physically active, and more if you are trying to build muscle (i.e.: body building) but now I'm beginning to think this just may be a myth, and actual needs are less.

 

[Note:  I'm talking about grams of dietary protein per Lean Body Mass (LBM), not total body weight.] 

 

Here are some studies that are making me re-think all of this.  BTW, I'm not saying these studies prove my point; only that they give credence to the idea.

 

•    Tarnopolsky et al. (1992) observed no differences in whole body protein synthesis or indexes of lean body mass in strength athletes consuming either 0.64g/lb or 1.10g/lb over a 2 week period. Protein oxidation did increase in the high protein group, indicating a nutrient overload.

 

•    Walberg et al. (1988) found that 0.73g/lb was sufficient to maintain positive nitrogen balance in cutting weightlifters over a 7 day time period.

 

•    Tarnopolsky et al. (1988) found that only 0.37g/lb was required to maintain positive nitrogen balance in elite bodybuilders (over 5 years of experience, possible previous use of androgens) over a 10 day period. 0.45g/lb was sufficient to maintain lean body mass in bodybuilders over a 2 week period. The authors suggested that 0.55g/lb was sufficient for bodybuilders.

 

•    Lemon et al. (1992) found no differences in muscle mass or strength gains in novice bodybuilders consuming either 0.61g/lb or 1.19g/lb over a 4 week period. Based on nitrogen balance data, the authors recommended 0.75g/lb.

 

•    Hoffman et al. (2006) found no differences in body composition, strength or resting hormonal concentrations in strength athletes consuming either 0.77g/lb or >0.91g/lb over a 3 month period.

 

•    The short-term effect of high versus moderate protein intake on recovery after strength training in resistance-trained individuals.  

Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition2017

 

Based on sound research, many scientific reviews have concluded 0.82g/lb is the upper limit at which protein intake benefits body composition (Phillips & Van Loon, 2011). This recommendation often includes a double 95% confidence level, meaning they took the highest mean intake at which benefits were still observed and then added two standard deviations to that level to make absolutely sure all possible benefits from additional protein intake are utilized. As such, this is already overdoing it and consuming 1g/lb ‘to be safe’ doesn’t make any sense. 0.82g/lb is already very safe.

 

optimal-protein-intake.png.69b4ea04e3c0ad183610ff572c0a44ee.png

(from Phillips & Van Loon, 2011)

 

From everything I've read so far, there appears to be no advantage to consuming more than 0.82g/lb (1.8g/kg) of protein per day to preserve or build muscle (for a strength athlete).  This already includes a mark-up (as noted above), since most research finds no more benefits after 0.64g/lb.

 

Furthermore, for those into body building, optimal protein intake decreases with training age, because your body becomes more efficient at preventing protein breakdown resulting from training and less protein is needed for the increasingly smaller amount of muscle that is built after each training session.

 

Just food for thought 🙂  What do you think?


 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by WaveHunter

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Must simplify: Without "animal-protein's" our distant ancestors would not have been able to expand their "brain-volume" from 600ccm to currently 1200ccm. Making it possible for us to land on the moon (in the final analisys).
Protein power made it possible, not "carrot-power".
Protein is good for you. What protein? Possibly 200 years from now, "Nutrionalists" will have figured it out. "With plenty of fine print", of course.


Enjoy your steak! And above all: Keep it simple!

 

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I just keep it at 1.6 per kg of body-weight and i sometimes struggle to get there at 94 kg its a lot of protein. But the protein powders help.

 

Steroid users of course can use more as 1.6 as the protein syntheses lies higher. 

 

To be honest I don't worry too much about it as long as i get over a 100 gram in my body.

 

But truth be told I never seen any difference between eating more or less protein (with the exception of being in a caloric deficit then recovery just goes slower). But as we build muscle at such a slow rate its not realistic to see it myself. So I just keep proteins high. 

 

I feel its a good thing to do as it keeps my carbs lower and fats not too high. Fats above a certain level are just empty calories. Its not like fat has much going for it vitamin / mineral wise unlike some carbs.  We do need fats of course but above a certain level its no longer useful. 

 

So high protein allows me to keep the other two , fat and carbs lower. Now if its not effective so be it but its not damaging either unless you got damaged kidneys. 

 

It is hardest for the body to burn protein so that is an added benefit and its not fat but protein that keeps us feeling full. So its a useful nutrient.

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1 hour ago, robblok said:

I just keep it at 1.6 per kg of body-weight and i sometimes struggle to get there at 94 kg its a lot of protein. But the protein powders help.

 

Steroid users of course can use more as 1.6 as the protein syntheses lies higher. 

 

To be honest I don't worry too much about it as long as i get over a 100 gram in my body.

 

But truth be told I never seen any difference between eating more or less protein (with the exception of being in a caloric deficit then recovery just goes slower). But as we build muscle at such a slow rate its not realistic to see it myself. So I just keep proteins high. 

 

I feel its a good thing to do as it keeps my carbs lower and fats not too high. Fats above a certain level are just empty calories. Its not like fat has much going for it vitamin / mineral wise unlike some carbs.  We do need fats of course but above a certain level its no longer useful. 

 

So high protein allows me to keep the other two , fat and carbs lower. Now if its not effective so be it but its not damaging either unless you got damaged kidneys. 

 

It is hardest for the body to burn protein so that is an added benefit and its not fat but protein that keeps us feeling full. So its a useful nutrient.

I see it a little different, though it sounds like your stated protein intake is proper according to the research I mentioned. 

 

The latest research I’ve seen from multiple sources shows that, even in body builders, 0.82g/lb is the upper limit at which protein intake benefits body composition.  

 

I think that the graph I included is pretty revealing.  At least it surprised me for showing much lower values than I previously believed.

 

You have to keep in mind that there’s a penalty for over-consuming protein because the excess will be converted to sugar, and likely be stored as body fat.

 

Also, at least from everything I’ve read, dietary fat induces a far higher level of satiety than protein, and certainly higher than carbs.  It also causes the lowest insulin response of all macronutrients, so, for someone with a weight problem, these are serious things to consider.

Edited by WaveHunter
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5 minutes ago, WaveHunter said:

I see it a little different, though it sounds like your stated protein intake is proper according to the research I mentioned. 

 

The latest research I’ve seen from multiple sources shows that, even in body builders, 0.82g/lb is the upper limit at which protein intake benefits body composition.  

 

I think that the graph I included is pretty revealing.  At least it surprised me for showing much lower values than I previously believed.

 

You have to keep in mind that there’s a penalty for over-consuming protein because the excess will be converted to sugar, and likely be stored as body fat.

 

Also, at least from everything I’ve read, dietary fat induces a far higher level of satiety than protein.  It also causes the lowest insulin response of all macronutrients, so, for someone with a weight problem, these are serious things to consider.

You read keto sites, i read bodybuilder sites. Guess what they both have their agenda on what fills the most protein or fat. But be honest fat is empty calories as there are few minerals or vitamins that go into them (or at least  not that many unless your consuming fatty fish)

 

Converted to sugar just means more carbs not a problem at all for an active individual. You still fear carbs too much. Not good for obese people, but they would not be looking to consume high amounts of protein to gain muscle.

 

I doubt that people with a weight problem would ponder about how much protein to eat. The ones who do that are usually bodybuilder. 

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1 hour ago, robblok said:

You read keto sites, i read bodybuilder sites. Guess what they both have their agenda on what fills the most protein or fat. But be honest fat is empty calories as there are few minerals or vitamins that go into them (or at least  not that many unless your consuming fatty fish)

 

Converted to sugar just means more carbs not a problem at all for an active individual. You still fear carbs too much. Not good for obese people, but they would not be looking to consume high amounts of protein to gain muscle.

 

I doubt that people with a weight problem would ponder about how much protein to eat. The ones who do that are usually bodybuilder. 

FYI, I rarely read sites dedicated to keto (or any general interest websites, YouTube, or Vlogs/Blogs) anymore for the very reasons you state.  Obviously, such sites are going to have a biased view or hidden agenda.

 

When I research something such as this, I do dedicated Google "scholar" searches for scholarly and unbiased research, not general searches, and the very first thing I do before I even read a research study is to be sure it is not sponsored by someone or some company that might have a hidden agenda.  

 

Fats are valuable nutritionally if you are trying to control carb intake.  With lowered carb intake, fats provide the energy needed to avoid a metabolic slowdown, and there is no question that they are far more satiating, and has a lower insulin response than any other macro.  That's a scientific fact and not even open to debate so they are far from being unimportant, if your goal is to optimize metabolic health.

 

As I say, over and over to you, I do not fear carbs.  I respect them.  True, if you are quite active, carbs are less of an issue, but no matter how active you are, excessive carb intake has a negative impact on metabolic health no matter how active you are.

 

My comments on protein are aimed at people who have no idea that excessive protein gets converted to sugar, and are deceived into believing that with protein, "more is better".  That's the prevailing attitude with the public, and especially with the gym crowd, and as heavily promoted by the protein supplement industry.

 

Rather, I am interested in keeping my metabolic health as optimized as possible, and everything I've learned through BOTH study and practice, indicates that controlling carb intake, and balancing fats and protein is key to achieving this goal.  Pure and simple!

 

I don't do this because I read somewhere that this is a good thing.  I do it because, after trying all sorts of nutritional guidelines (Vegan, Paleo, Keto, Etc) I've discovered that carb control is the common thread that's the key to my optimal metabolic health.

 

If it works for me, then there's a good chance it will work for a lot of other people.  I am not advocating it, only suggesting it as an option for people who have failed with other protocols, and feel confident doing that because there is indeed a lot of genuine science to back it up, not just outdated or myth-based pseudo-science.

 

Bottom line, I like to view everything with an open mind, and discover things for myself, rather than just blindly follow time-worn, myth based health dogma.  If I'm guilty of anything, it's simply advocating that others take a similar approach to finding what works best for them.

 

Edited by WaveHunter
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1 hour ago, WaveHunter said:

FYI, I rarely read sites dedicated to keto (or any general interest websites, YouTube, or Vlogs/Blogs) anymore for the very reasons you state.  Obviously, such sites are going to have a biased view or hidden agenda.

 

When I research something such as this, I do dedicated Google "scholar" searches for scholarly and unbiased research, not general searches, and the very first thing I do before I even read a research study is to be sure it is not sponsored by someone or some company that might have a hidden agenda.  

 

Fats are valuable nutritionally if you are trying to control carb intake.  With lowered carb intake, fats provide the energy needed to avoid a metabolic slowdown, and there is no question that they are far more satiating, and has a lower insulin response than any other macro.  That's a scientific fact and not even open to debate so they are far from being unimportant, if your goal is to optimize metabolic health.

 

As I say, over and over to you, I do not fear carbs.  I respect them.  True, if you are quite active, carbs are less of an issue, but no matter how active you are, excessive carb intake has a negative impact on metabolic health no matter how active you are.

 

My comments on protein are aimed at people who have no idea that excessive protein gets converted to sugar, and are deceived into believing that with protein, "more is better".  That's the prevailing attitude with the public, and especially with the gym crowd, and as heavily promoted by the protein supplement industry.

 

Rather, I am interested in keeping my metabolic health as optimized as possible, and everything I've learned through BOTH study and practice, indicates that controlling carb intake, and balancing fats and protein is key to achieving this goal.  Pure and simple!

 

I don't do this because I read somewhere that this is a good thing.  I do it because, after trying all sorts of nutritional guidelines (Vegan, Paleo, Keto, Etc) I've discovered that carb control is the common thread that's the key to my optimal metabolic health.

 

If it works for me, then there's a good chance it will work for a lot of other people.  I am not advocating it, only suggesting it as an option for people who have failed with other protocols, and feel confident doing that because there is indeed a lot of genuine science to back it up, not just outdated or myth-based pseudo-science.

 

Bottom line, I like to view everything with an open mind, and discover things for myself, rather than just blindly follow time-worn, myth based health dogma.  If I'm guilty of anything, it's simply advocating that others take a similar approach to finding what works best for them.

 

I been looking and so far there is no proof that i found that fat is more satiating as protein. So please show me some studies if you can.

 

The people who think more is better are bodybuilders by definition are active so they won't have much of a problem with the conversion to sugars it will even give them more boost during training. So your worries are not justified. I read plenty of bodybuilding sites but most seem to go with the 1.6g per kg of body-weight some go to two but havent seen much more. So a 100 kg individual would eat a whopping 40 grams of protein more then what is usable (wow 160 calories that get turned into sugars do you really think that is something to worry about). I think you often get too caught up in your thinking to convert it to practical matters.

 

I prefer to have 160 calories too much from protein then from carbs or fats as its a fact that fats cost almost nothing to burn while it cost up to 30% to burn protein. But again I am for the 1.6 and probably some days that I don't even get there. 

 

Fats are important but once your above a certain level they are just useless valueless calories better to have some oats then that have at least fibers / minerals / vitamins and so on. I guess we both see things differently (minor differences as I am not one to promote too much carbs). Guess what it works for me and countless bodybuilders so it works. 

 

But so much depends on the state of the individual and what he is doing the requirements for a couch potato are different then those of an active individual. Also how much body-fat one has is important as the less you have the better your insulin response is. For obese and inactive people i would always advise go low carb. But for healthy active people looking to shed 5-10 kg I would not worry too much if they eat a normal amount of unprocessed carbs and eat a bit of protein too much.

 

https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/82/1/1/4863302   (here it says protein is more satiating but there are other studies that show nothing) so its not a sure thing at all. I can only say for ME protein is far more satiating. 

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0924224414002386  (also says protein and fiber more important than fat)

 

Edited by robblok
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22 hours ago, robblok said:

I been looking and so far there is no proof that i found that fat is more satiating as protein. So please show me some studies if you can.

 

The people who think more is better are bodybuilders by definition are active so they won't have much of a problem with the conversion to sugars it will even give them more boost during training. So your worries are not justified. I read plenty of bodybuilding sites but most seem to go with the 1.6g per kg of body-weight some go to two but havent seen much more. So a 100 kg individual would eat a whopping 40 grams of protein more then what is usable (wow 160 calories that get turned into sugars do you really think that is something to worry about). I think you often get too caught up in your thinking to convert it to practical matters.

 

I prefer to have 160 calories too much from protein then from carbs or fats as its a fact that fats cost almost nothing to burn while it cost up to 30% to burn protein. But again I am for the 1.6 and probably some days that I don't even get there. 

 

Fats are important but once your above a certain level they are just useless valueless calories better to have some oats then that have at least fibers / minerals / vitamins and so on. I guess we both see things differently (minor differences as I am not one to promote too much carbs). Guess what it works for me and countless bodybuilders so it works. 

 

But so much depends on the state of the individual and what he is doing the requirements for a couch potato are different then those of an active individual. Also how much body-fat one has is important as the less you have the better your insulin response is. For obese and inactive people i would always advise go low carb. But for healthy active people looking to shed 5-10 kg I would not worry too much if they eat a normal amount of unprocessed carbs and eat a bit of protein too much.

 

https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/82/1/1/4863302   (here it says protein is more satiating but there are other studies that show nothing) so its not a sure thing at all. I can only say for ME protein is far more satiating. 

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0924224414002386  (also says protein and fiber more important than fat)

 

Perhaps it’s not wise to discuss satiety of fat vs protein since it is very subjective.  However, the argument that protein is more satiating than carbohydrate or fat has passed as fact so often many people don’t question it anymore, even in evidence-based fitness circles.

 

Like I said, this is a subjective thing so it's not really worth debating, but since you asked, here is a random sampling of studies that find no acute effect of various levels of protein intake within a meal on satiety.

 

 

How about we just agree that protein and fat are BOTH significantly more satiating over time than carbohydrates, since, to me, that's the real message here?

 

For me, I find fats to be highly satiating because I am “keto-adapted”.  That is, I am more adapted to efficiently using fat as a fuel source than you may be. For you, perhaps proteins are more satiating because you are not similarly adapted.

 

What i strongly disagree with you on is the actual role fats and lipids play in optimal metabolic health.  Their role is not limited to delivering calories or micronutrients, and beyond which, they are simply "useless valueless calories" as you imply.  

 

The main function of Lipids and fats is to govern metabolic, hormonal and structural processes, and in that regard they play just as critical a role to metabolic hormonal balance (i.e.: insulin / leptin), as proteins play in providing the building blocks of our organism.  BOTH proteins and fats are critical for optimal health.  Carbs are not, and that was my original contention in the first place.

 

I'm not saying I am right and you are wrong anymore than I assume you are saying that of me.  There's far too many gray areas in current understanding of these things.  It's all really just personal opinion, I guess is the best way to put it.

Edited by WaveHunter

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18 hours ago, WaveHunter said:

Perhaps it’s not wise to discuss satiety of fat vs protein since it is very subjective.  However, the argument that protein is more satiating than carbohydrate or fat has passed as fact so often many people don’t question it anymore, even in evidence-based fitness circles.

 

Like I said, this is a subjective thing so it's not really worth debating, but since you asked, here is a random sampling of studies that find no acute effect of various levels of protein intake within a meal on satiety.

 

 

How about we just agree that protein and fat are BOTH significantly more satiating over time than carbohydrates, since, to me, that's the real message here?

 

For me, I find fats to be highly satiating because I am “keto-adapted”.  That is, I am more adapted to efficiently using fat as a fuel source than you may be. For you, perhaps proteins are more satiating because you are not similarly adapted.

 

What i strongly disagree with you on is the actual role fats and lipids play in optimal metabolic health.  Their role is not limited to delivering calories or micronutrients, and beyond which, they are simply "useless valueless calories" as you imply.  

 

The main function of Lipids and fats is to govern metabolic, hormonal and structural processes, and in that regard they play just as critical a role to metabolic hormonal balance (i.e.: insulin / leptin), as proteins play in providing the building blocks of our organism.  BOTH proteins and fats are critical for optimal health.  Carbs are not, and that was my original contention in the first place.

 

I'm not saying I am right and you are wrong anymore than I assume you are saying that of me.  There's far too many gray areas in current understanding of these things.  It's all really just personal opinion, I guess is the best way to put it.

Yes lets forget about what is more satiating as the studies go both ways.

 

For me fat (in the form of MCT oil) does not do a thing for me but a casein shake does.

 

You keep saying carbs are not essential and its true but there are a lot of healthy carbs with vitamins and minerals unlike fats they offer more benefits. For instance fruits not essential.. but how about their vitamins. 

 

Anyway there are more ways to skin a cat. 

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7 hours ago, robblok said:

Yes lets forget about what is more satiating as the studies go both ways.

 

For me fat (in the form of MCT oil) does not do a thing for me but a casein shake does.

 

You keep saying carbs are not essential and its true but there are a lot of healthy carbs with vitamins and minerals unlike fats they offer more benefits. For instance fruits not essential.. but how about their vitamins. 

 

Anyway there are more ways to skin a cat. 

Yes I agree that carbs are important especially as a source of vitamins and minerals, provided they are naturally sourced (i.e.: fruits and vegetables), but not processed (i.e.: fruit juices).  The goal should simply be to limit them as a way to control insulin response, which doesn't mean they have to be eliminated.

 

As for fats, I consider them important, especially if you are trying to control carb intake.  You must increase fat consumption if you limit carb consumption in order to maintain energy balance, otherwise the body will respond with metabolic slowdown. 

 

Fats provide the energy you need when lowering carb intake and do so without the typically high insulin response that carbs cause.  MCT oil is particularly effective in the way it can directly fuel the brain since it easily passes the blood brain barrier, and it is optimal at promoting lipolysis through production of ketone bodies. 

 

You can overcome the energy deficit of lowered carbs by increasing dietary protein but additional protein beyond what the body needs for building blocks and protein synthesis will simply be converted to sugar.  That defeats the purposes of cutting carbs since the same insulin response that carbs cause will occur.

 

It is a scientifically proven fact that carbs create the highest insulin response, proteins elicit a moderate response, but fats elicit almost no response.  Therein is the value of fats as I see it; it provides the most metabolically efficient form of energy for the body and brain.

 

 

Edited by WaveHunter
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just experiment with it. every single one of us is different. Me personally grow my best when i hit the 3.5 gr/kg. To some this is on the higher end.

As i said, trial and error, track your progress and you should find that sweetspot

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On 7/29/2019 at 1:32 AM, Alex9191 said:

just experiment with it. every single one of us is different. Me personally grow my best when i hit the 3.5 gr/kg. To some this is on the higher end.

 As i said, trial and error, track your progress and you should find that sweetspot

As a natural or enhanced lifter ? Steroids can enhance protein synthesis so you can use more of it. Personally I have never really seen much difference in my years as lifting and working out. Does not mean there is none just never really seen a difference.  

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On 7/28/2019 at 2:45 PM, WaveHunter said:

Yes I agree that carbs are important especially as a source of vitamins and minerals, provided they are naturally sourced (i.e.: fruits and vegetables), but not processed (i.e.: fruit juices).  The goal should simply be to limit them as a way to control insulin response, which doesn't mean they have to be eliminated.

 

As for fats, I consider them important, especially if you are trying to control carb intake.  You must increase fat consumption if you limit carb consumption in order to maintain energy balance, otherwise the body will respond with metabolic slowdown. 

 

Fats provide the energy you need when lowering carb intake and do so without the typically high insulin response that carbs cause.  MCT oil is particularly effective in the way it can directly fuel the brain since it easily passes the blood brain barrier, and it is optimal at promoting lipolysis through production of ketone bodies. 

 

You can overcome the energy deficit of lowered carbs by increasing dietary protein but additional protein beyond what the body needs for building blocks and protein synthesis will simply be converted to sugar.  That defeats the purposes of cutting carbs since the same insulin response that carbs cause will occur.

 

It is a scientifically proven fact that carbs create the highest insulin response, proteins elicit a moderate response, but fats elicit almost no response.  Therein is the value of fats as I see it; it provides the most metabolically efficient form of energy for the body and brain.

 

 

IF the body worked best on fats, there would not be 2 systems who both seem to respond to different levels of intensity of exercise. Our body is made to make use of 2 systems not sure why some seem to think we need to switch to one system.

 

As for your fear of insulin, that might be justified in the more obese people but the more fat you lose the less problem insulin is (leaner means better response). So I will say this for real obese people cutting out carbs is great. For healthy people who got a let less to lose no need at all as long as you cut out processed carbs. Especially if you combine your weight loss with weight training (some say weight training is the best way to enhance fat loss and change body compositions better than aerobic exercise)

 

 

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On 7/29/2019 at 1:32 AM, Alex9191 said:

just experiment with it. every single one of us is different. Me personally grow my best when i hit the 3.5 gr/kg. To some this is on the higher end.

As i said, trial and error, track your progress and you should find that sweetspot

That's super high! I would check your BUN levels, then you will see how well you are processing all that protein

 

Furthermore, the more muscle you carry the less you need to maintain.....

 

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