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PROTEIN


To get the proper health benefits of protein, most people need about 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight each day and if you are looking to increase the muscular definition on your body you need to eat at least 1.4grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight.

When additional demands are made on the body, such as working out or while recovering from an injury, more protein is needed to help the body.

Proteins are considered incomplete or complete proteins.

Complete proteins contain all the essential amino acids, while incomplete proteins don’t. Good sources of complete proteins come from animals. For instance, eggs, milk, chicken and fish all contain complete proteins.

Healthy food choices for incomplete proteins include, nuts, such as almonds, beans and whole grains, but due to busy schedules and people not being able to eat protein in one go, the additional needed can be achieved through protein shakes and bars that are available.

Will taking protein make me fat?

No - in fact it may help you if you are on a diet. You see the amino acids in protein may help keep your blood sugar levels stabile. This is important because it keeps you feeling good all day and stops your craving for food that occurs when your blood sugar level drops.

If your diet is too high in carbohydrates your blood sugar levels go though peaks and valleys. You go from a burst of energy and feeling full to a lull and being hungry. In addition, if you are dieting, getting 17 grams of protein from a protein shake that has only 90 calories is better than getting your protein from a big meal which may have hundreds of calories.

When is the best time to take a protein supplement?

This depends on your diet and when you are eating foods rich in protein. Here are a few points when it is best to take a protein supplement:

1. Right after a workout - this is when your body goes into a stage of recovery and growth. Having the amino acids that make up the protein is key at this point.

2. First thing in the morning - because your body has just gone though 8 hours (or however long you sleep for) of not having food - so the protein levels are way down.

3. Before you go to sleep - this helps prevent the protein breakdown that naturally occurs when we sleep. If you are not trying to build muscle mass then this protein breakdown is fine. But if you are working out - you want to try to minimize any losses you suffer when you sleep and your protein metabolism slows down.

Are there any dangers of taking too much protein?

Yes. As with basically anything - too much of a good thing can be bad. If you take too much protein, say you weigh 150 pounds and take 300 grams of protein a day - your body will not be able to process all the protein into amino acids. What your body can not use will have to be excreted as a waste product. This means your kidney and liver will be doing a lot of work just to get the excess protein out of your body. While this will not cause any major problems over a short period of time - you would not want to be overworking your kidney and liver over the course of several years. Protein supplementation is very safe if you stay within the dosage guidelines.


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