Whether it's your goal to gain muscle mass, or lose fat, you need a good amount of protein.
You know it's essential, you probably know the best foods to get it, but do you know how much protein you need to eat every day?
This is the question you should be able to answer, and depending on your goal, your protein intake may vary.
The article is intended for healthy people looking to gain muscle mass, or lose fat, and focuses above all on gym goers.
Let's start with fat loss.
Protein in fat loss
It's not just to gain muscle mass that you need protein, it's also essential for those who want to lose fat.
If you don't use enough protein, you run the risk of losing too much lean mass, and with that, the results in the mirror will be lower, but not only.
The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn, so progress in fat burning will also be faster.
In addition, it is important to recover from training and keep your appetite under control.
If you're having trouble controlling your appetite in your diet for fat loss, take a look at this article.
How much protein should you use when you want to lose fat?
When you want to lose fat, it makes sense that your protein intake is higher.
There are several reasons for this.
Although carbohydrates and fats are the body's main sources of energy, when you look to lose fat, you lower your calories and follow a low-calorie diet.
To lower your calories, you need to reduce the amount of macronutrients you eat, so you start reducing carbohydrates and fats.
By doing this, and especially in more advanced phases, or more aggressive diets, the body uses more protein as an energy source, which can lead to significant muscle mass losses.
In addition, cardio is usually used at this stage, which means more training, and greater need for recovery.
This study compared the differences between a diet for fat loss with 1g of protein per kilo of body weight, compared to a diet with 2.3g of protein/kg.
The conclusion was simple, the group that used more protein lost less lean mass.
Okay, how much protein do I use then?
A simple method of knowing how much protein you should use is to take the nearest scale and weigh yourself.
Take that number and multiply by something between 2.3g to 2.8g.
This is the amount of protein you should use to lose fat and maintain your muscle mass.
Vasco weighs 80kg and is determined to lose fat, but does not want to lose the muscle mass that so much work has given him to gain.
He took his phone and made a simple account to know how much protein to use in his diet.
80 x 2.5 = 200
Therefore, Vasco, with his 80kg, decided to multiply by 2.5g of protein, which means that he will consume 200g of protein daily to get good results.
Note. It starts at a lower value, between 2.3g to 2.5g, and if necessary, increases up to 2.8g.
Protein and muscle mass gain
If your goal is to gain muscle mass, you can reduce protein consumption compared to the fat loss phase.
yes, you read well, you can reduce the protein.
But not excessively.
This is because the body, as we mentioned earlier, uses above all carbohydrates and fats as an energy source.
To gain muscle mass you need a hypercaloric diet, rich not only in protein, but also in these two macronutrients.
Given that the body has an excess of calories, and enough carbohydrates and fats, it will depend little on the protein to give you energy.
In other words, the protein you use will be used mostly for what interests you, gain muscle mass.
How much protein should I use then?
Well, you can reduce it, but not too much.
The method doesn't change, so you need to know your body weight.
Once you know your weight, multiply by a value between 1.8g to 2.3g.
This means you will consume between 1.8g to 2.3g of protein per kilo of body weight.
Tiago, unlike Vasco, wants to gain muscle mass, is not satisfied with his 70kg and wants more muscle.
Here's your account.
70 x 2.1 = 147
By using the value of 2.1g of protein, Tiago came to the conclusion that he will need 147g of protein to get good results.
Note. It starts at the lowest values, between 1.8g and 2.1g, and if necessary, increases up to 2.3g.
Protein is undoubtedly key to achieving your goals successfully, and knowing how much protein you need per day is essential to achieve the best results.
As you may have noticed from the article, it's not too complicated to calculate your daily protein needs.
Weigh yourself and multiply your weight by a value appropriate to your goal.
These values are only general suggestions, which result in most cases, but are not sacred numbers, and you may need to adapt them.
This does not mean that 10g per kg is a good idea and will bring you extra results.
To finish, don't forget that your diet is not just protein, and you also eat enough carbohydrates and fats.