How Much Protein Per Day Should I Eat?
Are you wondering how much protein per day you should eat? Although you have obviously heard about protein, do you actually know what it does or why it is important for health? On the nutrition labels on food you can see the amount of protein it has, but to many people it is unimportant, because they don’t understand why protein is such an important part of a persons diet. Along with how many calories should i eat and how much carbs should I eat, this question gets asked a lot.
What Is Protein?
Protein, carbohydrates and fat are the 3 micro nutrients that make up the food we eat. Protein is extremely important because it is an important part of each cell in the human body.
When you think of your hair and nails you may not think of protien, but they are made from them. When skin tissue is broken down your body uses protein to build it back again, protien is also responsible for making many chemicals which play a big role in the function of your body and your mind.
It is an extremely important builder of healthy bones, cartilage, skin, blood and also muscles. If you lack protein in your diet there is going to be problems.
How Much Protein Per Day?
The amount of protein you will need on a daily basis is going to depend on a number of things.
Firstly, are you male or female? Males usually need more protein than females.
Secondly, what is your age? Children and the elderly will require less protein than adults.
Thirdly, how active are you? People who exercise regularly will need more protein, because muscle tissue is broken down during exercise and protein is required to rebuild it.
The best possible way to find out the exact amount you require is to consult a doctor or a nutritionist, but if you want a ball park figure here are some averages which will give you an idea.
Infants = 10 plus grams per day
Teenage males = 52 plus grams per day
Teenage females = 46 plus grams per day
Adult males = 56 grams per day
Adult females = 46 grams per day
**(Remember these are just estimates!)
What Are Good Sources Of Protein?
Some foods are richer than others in protein, here is a good list to start with:
Meats- Chicken, beef, pork etc. The whiter and leaner the better, chicken breast is very healthy and high in protein.
Fish- Salmon, tuna etc. Fish is very healthy and high in protein. Fish oil also protects against heart disease.
Eggs- They are high in protein but also high in cholesterol. If you are going to eat them regularly, try eating only the egg whites.
Vegetarian-choices such as beans, nuts, tofu etc. are also high in protein.
When calculating how much protein per day you will eat, you should take into account what type of protein food you will be eating most, try and choose something healthy.