Too Much Protein?
Today was my formal training according to the 10-8-6-15 program. I felt great, and I'm planning to go with it for about 4 weeks.
As you recommended I'm checking my diet. I learned that I should take 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day. In that case I should consume 126 grams protein per day. Isn't that too much for me?
I have my protein from chicken, pork, fish, beans, beef, skim milk, and whey protein (just after training). Some of my friends told me that consume too much protein will do harm to our liver and kidneys, because nitride compounds are removed by them.
But I think that if I train appropriately and hard enough, the protein can all be used to build muscle. Is that right?
Should I count exactly what I have consumed of protein to match 126 grams? If so, could you tell me how?
All three of my meals contain protein, and my snacks will be skim milk for casein and with bread. Could you give some advice on how to distribute them? And should it be different when it comes to training day and off days?
Thanks so much for your help
All the best,
My Answer: The notion that a lot of protein will harm your kidneys and liver was perpetuated by studies on people who already had damaged kidneys. If you're a normal healthy human being, then your body can handle quite a lot of protein. BUT it's still a good idea to cycle your protein intake.
What normally happens is that when you increase your protein intake, you gain muscle. Over time, however, your body will become used to the protein intake and you have to increase the amount you ingest. You make some gains at first, but guess what? Your body again becomes accustomed to eating that amount of protein, just to maintain its size. It's a never ending cycle. This is why a lot of bodybuilders ingest 200-300 grams of protein a day.
Your body is meant to deal with the scarcity of food: scarce protein, scarce calories, scarce fat. It is meant to survive in times of famine, and to load up when food is plentiful.
What you have to do is to shoot for 126-130 grams of protein everyday. Over time your body will become accustomed to eating that amount, so you must reset your metabolism by dropping your protein intake periodically. Choose one or two days (preferably non-training) out of the week where you avoid protein powders. Eat as many carbs as you want, but don't worry about hitting your 126 gram target. Then go back to eating 100+ grams daily. 5-6 days of high protein, 1-2 days of low protein.
A great way to figure out your protein intake is to open a free account with Fitday.com. This service will help keep track of your protein intake, as well as carbs, fat and calories.