Protein Power

Whether you are wanting to gain weight, lose weight or maintain muscle mass, protein is essential in every diet.

Weight loss

Those trying to lose weight often decrease their protein intake due to fat often being associated with higher protein foods(we will get to fat in a later blog!). Decreasing your intake of protein too much can actually hinder your weight loss efforts and can cause your body to hold onto fat cells. This is because your body thinks it is starving and it then slows your metabolism down to prevent weight loss. Conversely, too much protein can cause weight gain and can be counterproductive. Protein is essential to weight management and lean muscle mass but too much protein can be stored as fat. This is a very delicate balance and if you feel like you need more guidance, contact me. 

Weight Gain

Protein is essential to increasing lean muscle mass. If you are looking to increase muscle mass, protein is a must in your diet. The trouble is, too much protein can be stored as fat but can also put a strain on your kidneys. When increasing your protein intake, ensure you get plenty of water to keep your kidneys healthy. 

Maintaining Muscle Mass

As we age, it can be more difficult to maintain muscle mass so it is extra important to keep protein intake a priority. When combined with an appropriate exercise regimen, adequate protein intake can prevent muscles from atrophy. Maintenance of muscle mass can decrease risk of injuries and shorten recover time from exercise, stress, and even surgery. 

Protein Tips and Tricks

  1. An easy way to make sure you get enough protein everyday is to make sure you have a source of protein at every meal.
  2. Make sure you eat a variety of protein sources to make eating it interesting and to keep your metabolism from stalling out.
  3. As a general rule, one serving of protein specific for your body is about the size of your palm.

 Check out the different sources of protein below

Protein at every meal may help preserve muscle strength as you age. Harvard Women's Health Watch [serial online]. November 2017;25(3):8. Available from: Alt HealthWatch, Ipswich, MA. 
Holwerda A, Kouw I, van Loon L, et al. Physical Activity Performed in the Evening Increases the Overnight Muscle Protein Synthetic Response to Presleep Protein Ingestion in Older Men. Journal Of Nutrition [serial online]. July 2016;146(7):1307. Available from: Complementary Index, Ipswich, MA. 
Weinert D. Nutrition and muscle protein synthesis: a descriptive review. Journal Of The Canadian Chiropractic Association [serial online]. September 2009;53(3):186-193. Available from: Alt HealthWatch, Ipswich, MA
Mei-En C, Shang-Jyh H, Meng-Chuan H, et al. Correlations of dietary energy and protein intakes with renal function impairment in chronic kidney disease patients with or without diabetes. Kaohsiung Journal Of Medical Sciences, Vol 33, Iss 5, Pp 252-259 (2017) [serial online]. 2017;(5):252. Available from: Directory of Open Access Journals, Ipswich, MA.