Daily Protein Needs

Today is Tuesday, March 4th

The question today:

How much protein do most people need daily?

First, a quick review.  The major nutrients in foods are:  protein, carbohydrate and fat.  Proteins are made of various amino acids that are called the building blocks for proteins.  Some amino acids our bodies can synthesize and others are found in our food supply. Proteins are made into substances that make body processes work.  They are needed for growth and repair, to regulate body functions (enzymes and hormones), and needed for defense (skin, blood clotting and antibodies to keep your immune system healthy).  Protein can be used for energy if needed, but the body does not prefer it as an energy source.  Protein contains 4 calories per gram

But how much does an average person really need?  The amount will vary according to specific needs.  For example, more will be needed for wound healing, dialysis, and other medical situations.  For the average person, 15% of daily calorie needs should come from protein or 0.8 g – 1.0 g per kg per day.  15% of an 1800 calorie day would be 67.5 grams.  15% of a 1400 calorie day would be 52.5 grams.  It is always a good idea to ingest your nutrients evenly throughout the day so your body does not have to work so hard to digest and package the foods.

Examples of protein approximately found in various foods are as follows:

3 oz. chicken, fish, or meat (deck of cards) = 21 g

1 egg = 8 g

1/2 cup cottage cheese = 13 g

1 cup milk = 8 g

1 cup Greek yogurt (plain) = 23 g

1/2 cup legumes = 6-7 g

1/3-1/2 cup  rice, potatoes or 1 slice hearty bread = 2-3 g

1/2 cup non-starchy vegetables = 1-2 g

small serving of fruit = 0.5 g

Tip of the day:

To convert pounds into kilograms (kg) divide pounds by 2.2.  For example:  200 lb. divided by 2.2 = 90.9 kg.

90.9 kg x 0.8 g protein = 72.7 g protein per day.

Take action today:

*  Calculate your protein needs

*  Track your protein intake

 

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