Protein Needs by Dr. Sara Detox Toronto Naturopath
Blog Fitness + Nutrition

Higher Protein … What’s The Big Deal?

January 20, 2016

 

Are you overworked, exhausted, and ready to call it a day by 3pm?

If you don’t have a medical condition that causes fatigue, the answer to more energy may be as simple as higher protein.

Energy comes in the form of food. If you lack macronutrients like protein, fatigue is one of the first symptoms to present.

My suggestion?

Increase good quality protein sources with every meal and snack – choose hemp or vegan/whey protein shakes, organic chicken, wild fish, detoxifying mung beans, cage-free eggs, Greek yoghurt, or tofu.

Higher protein provides the basic building blocks for tissue growth.

If you’re not re-fueling with enough protein throughout the day, your system will not function optimally.

How much protein should you consume daily?

The answer to this question is complex and a number of factors should be considered when calculating your daily requirements. You must consider individual energy needs and level of daily activity.

For example, if you are training for a fitness competition, you have higher protein requirements than the recommendations outlined below.

It really isn’t brain science, just common sense.

Greater energy demands mean significantly higher protein requirements.

For the average adult who engages in light to moderate physical activity daily, the recommended daily allowance (RDA) is based on a simple calculation.

Take your weight in pounds and multiply it by 0.36.

This is a general guideline and most ND’s agree that this isn’t enough.

My suggestion to my patients is to multiply their weight in pounds by 0.8 rather than 0.36.

Now we’re talking.

When it comes to breakfast, protein is key.

There are healthier breakfast options than granola.

If you are starting your day with granola, you are probably only getting about 6 grams of protein. This is equivalent to the amount of protein found in one hard-boiled egg.

Starting your day with granola will likely leave you feeling fatigued shortly after breakfast.

Try replacing your morning granola with 2 eggs, 1/2 cup of berries, and Greek yoghurt.

This gives you higher protein and less sugar than granola. Most importantly, it will keep you feeling fuller longer.

With small adjustments to daily protein intake, many people notice a significant difference in their energy levels.

I commonly hear things like, “I can’t believe how much energy I have now that I’m eating more protein.”

Can you eat too much protein?

Yes, you can have too much protein and this can negatively impact your health.

Many weight loss diets encourage high protein consumption with very little carbohydrates. What many people do not realize is that too much protein may actually harm them.

It is important to speak with a health care professional about individual protein requirements and how to go about meeting them daily.

Besides being difficult to digest, too much protein can lead to kidney and liver stress and excessive mineral loss.

I have been working in the fitness industry for over 20 years and I usually discourage the fashionable high protein diets.

It is better to consume a well-balanced diet and increase protein intake only when necessary and in the right amounts.

 

Dr.Sara Celik
Dr. Sara Celik is a board-certified Naturopathic Doctor and is the Spokesperson for Renew Life Canada. She is a leader in the health and wellness industry and is regularly featured as a sought-after expert on television programs and in health publications. Dr. Sara carries over 15 years experience and her private practice and work in the community is focused on digestive health, detoxification, and clinical nutrition.
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