Protein is an absolutely vital macronutrient. From protein, we get amino acids which are the very building blocks of life. The very word protein comes from the Greek work “prote(ios)” meaning “primary” or “first”. This should give you an idea of how important protein is to you.
The key to protein, to keep the discussion simple, is to eat it in moderation.
Among the many benefits of protein are:
- Protein protects and repairs your body’s muscles, tissues and cells
- Increases the production of body heat (thermogenesis) which leads to an increase in your metabolism
- Protein consumption regulates your blood glucose levels; and
- Eating protein also allows you to feel full for longer periods of time.
If you focus on eating whole foods, especially animal products such as meat and dairy every day, you will have absolutely no problem consuming all of the protein that you would ever require in your diet.
If you want to get technical about it, we recommend that you eat around 1 Gram of protein per Kilogram of body weight. For example, an 80 Kilogram male can eat 80 Grams of protein a day. You cannot go wrong at this level, and if you eat more than that, say up to 1.5 Grams of protein per Kilogram of body weight (120 Grams of protein a day for our 80 Kilogram male example), that will not be a problem. Eating amounts of protein much less than this (say 0.6 Gram protein per Kilogram of body weight) runs the risk of malnutrition, and we certainly do not advise this.
Protein does cause an insulin response in the body – not as large as the consumption of carbohydrates – but still it is a macronutrient which causes a significant hormonal response when consumed.
This is why you should eat proteins moderately, especially in a weight loss phase, because you will get all of the health benefits of protein consumption without the associated weight gain of excessive protein consumption.
When eating whole foods, it is very common to find protein and natural fats together in the same ingredient. For example, you will find high amounts of protein in meat, milk, and some nuts. At the same time, these foods also contain significant amounts of natural fats. This is the perfectly correct way to eat.
We refer you to our recipe section where you will find a huge selection of food ideas, which contain a healthy balance of macronutrients for your daily consumption – plus they taste delicious too.