Protein Needs

October 8, 2009

Do you remember when you were a kid and you went through growth spurts? Or, perhaps you have children or young teens that are going through a period of fast growth. Hmmm. Now that I think about it, kids grow pretty much constantly from the time they are born until they reach a stable body size. During this time of growth, about a third of their protein intake goes toward their body’s tissue growth (this tissue-building process is called anabolism).

Once we reach adulthood and a stable body size with no additional growth, we have a continual turnover of tissue protein with no net protein gain or loss. At this point we require enough protein to replace the amino acids that are continually degraded in the turnover process.

However, if you are an exerciser, your body will need additional protein to replace protein that is broken down during your training sessions. This is particularly true of endurance iStock_000004542942XSmallathletes and people that engage in regular aerobic training.  For those that want to increase their muscle mass, a bit more protein is needed for the tissue building (muscle building) process. How much is needed?

According to a study by Tarnopolsky (the study is called, “Influence of protein intake and training status on nitrogen balance and lean body mass”), sedentary people can get by on about 0.73 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. Those that want to add muscle mass need at least 0.82 grams per kg of body weight; and endurance athletes need at least 1.37 g of protein per kg of body weight per day.

Exercise physiologists recommend that those who train intensely consume between 1.2 and 1.8 g of protein per kg of body weight daily.

What is 1.2 – 1.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight, and how can we realistically get that into our diet?  We’ll tackle that tomorrow.


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17 Responses to “Protein Needs”

  1. JJ Jalopy says:

    Lots of my favorite things have protein in them.

  2. Pam Schulz says:

    Useful information on why and how protein is important.

    Expert Houston Retirement Planning & Wealth Management Services

  3. Thanks I always like information I can apply

    Jose Escalante

  4. Eating a high Protein diet makes me feel better and gives me more long term sustainable energy than eating a high cabohydrate diet. I know I’m probably eating too much protein but it seems to work for me.

    Steve Chambers, Sale Trainer Speaker

  5. Kate McKeon says:

    Excellent post Darryl, protein and water make the body go ’round. 🙂

    Getting adequate protein when training is a challenge, particularly finding a protein source that isn’t weighed down with fats or excessive carbs.

    What do recommend for those who react to soy and milk (whey) based products?


  6. Lynn Lane says:

    Some people don’t know how to find that much clean protien.

    Look forward to your next post.

    Lynn Lane

    Success Strategies For Life

  7. Keri Eagan says:

    Go the lentils and brown rice and beans!

    So important to get the protein to the young bodies. Bless ’em.

    Keri Eagan
    Anything Alternative

  8. Rob Northrup says:

    I never considered this before. Protein is a very important thing for developing bodies.

    Simple Survival Tips For Disasters and Emergencies

  9. Vicki says:

    I was glad to hear we have a continual turnover of tissue protein with no net protein gain or loss once we reach the no growth stage. Good thing yes – but keeping it there is another story I presume.

  10. Indeed growth spurts are a funny and amazing thing. I more remember my feet going straight from a 4.5 to a 6.5 when I bought my next pair of sneakers after 1 summer.

    Great health and fitness information, Darryl

    Happy Dating and Relationships,

    April Braswell

  11. Martin says:

    Interesting post, and looking forward to understanding the impact of different foods and types of protein on our bodies.

  12. Lisa says:

    I didn’t realize we used up so much protein as children to grow. Interesting thought.

  13. Mister P says:

    Thanks for the information.

    Bert (alter ego- Mister P)

  14. I remember one time when my daughter literally grew 2 inches in 2 weeks. It was the biggest and craziest growth spurt I had ever seen. She went into the bathroom one day and came back out telling me that she had bumped her head on the soap dish on the wall. She said that just the day before she was able to walk under it. The last time I had meansured her height was two weeks before that. So although I say it happened over a two week period, I almost think it happened overnight! I wonder how much protein we had for dinner that evening!

    Lisa McLellan
    Child Care Expert,
    Babysitting Services, Babysitting Tips, Babysitters, Nannies

  15. Greg says:

    1.2 grams seems like a lot. Interesting though, if I decide to bulk up, I know where to look.


  16. Looking forward to tomorrow.

    Martin O’Connor

  17. John Ho says:

    Getting enough protein for growth & body repairs is important for good health.

    Can’t wait to see how you can jam pack enough protein for those who do trainings.

    Lentils and beans have lots of protein.

    John Ho
    Numerology Expert Helps Understanding Personality for Better Influence & Persuasion



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