Are You Eating Too Much Protein?
Aug 10, 2020 06:18 AM EDT | By Dana C.
Too much protein may not be as great as it seems.
Protein is one of the three macronutrients that you need to have daily in order to survive, alongside fat and carbohydrates, but there really is such a thing as too much protein.
While protein in itself is important in sustaining and increasing muscle mass and plays a vital role in transporting oxygen throughout the body, you can still get too much of it.
Liz Weinandy, RD from The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center broke down exactly how much protein you need every day in an Eat This, Not That article.
She also detailed some indicators that could mean you have too much protein in your diet.
How much protein do I need?
The amount of protein you need every day can vary depending on your level of activity. "Most people need around 1 gram of protein for each kilogram of ideal body weight," says Weinandy.
Some body weight equations can be used to tell how much proteins a person needs based on their height. But, just like the BMI, this equation fails to take muscle mass into account.
For those trying to build muscle mass, 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram is a good start. Athletes are likely to need more than those who don't exercise as regularly.
No matter what, you have to consume at least 30 grams of protein per meal.
What warning signs are there for too much protein?
Weinandy said too much protein can be problematic for many reasons. Here are some things that will happen to a person's body when they are eating too much protein than they should be.
Weight Gain: Proteins really can satisfy a person's hunger, but if taken too far, it can tip over scales too, reported The Healthy. This is most especially true with animal protein and protein shakes.
Meat will mean more fat and calories, leading to weight gain. Kaleigh McMordie, a registered dietitian nutritionist said people have to aim for balanced meals that include lean protein, whole grains, vegetables and fruits.
Constipation: Healthline reported that a study of 44 participants experienced constipation due to high-protein diets. These kinds of diets restrict carbohydrates that are usually low in fiber.
Fiber is important for digestion and bowel regularity so you have to increase your water and fiber intake to prevent feeling constipated. Eating naturally probiotic-rich food will also help in digestion.
Bad Breath: This is most common among people who are following a ketogenic diet. But that doesn't mean it isn't try for those in protein-heave diets as well.
Bacteria that grow on the tongue breaks down protein and it can emit smelly gases the cause bad breath. Restricting carbohydrate won't help with this as well, since eating large amounts of protein will only add to the bacteria.
Brushing and flossing won't get rid of the small, but doubling water intake and more often brush may help. Chewing gum might also counter some of this effect.
Dehydration: A small study in 2002 involving athletes in high-protein diets showed lower hydration levels. But it did note that consuming more protein only had little impact to hydration.
If you're an active person, drinking more water should help with this effect, and this doesn't just apply for high protein intake but also important for any diet.
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