To calculate your daily protein need (the easy way):
Desired body weight _______, in kilos times 0.8-1.2 grams; in pounds times 0.36-0.6 grams; equals _______ grams per day.
Use the lower figure if you are in perfect health and physically fit. Use a higher number if you are under stress, emotional or physical.
The highest number, 1.2 grams per kilo or 0.6 grams per pound, is used pre- and post-surgery, during pregnancy, after illness and for weight training.
Example: A healthy man, 175 lbs./79.54 kilos, exercising regularly with no health problems would need 72 (71.59) grams of protein per day. That works out to about 24 grams per meal. If stressed or ill the calculation might go as high as 95 grams per day.
Points to remember about protein:
1. The RDA of protein for a 79kg (174 lb.) adult male is about 63 Grams. Women (calculated for a 63kg or 138 lb. woman) need about 50 grams. (0.8 Grams protein per Kilogram of body weight.) Pregnant and nursing women require about 30% more. Children need as much as adults because they are growing. A rapidly growing child can require 2 to 3 times more protein than an adult by weight.
2. A safety factor was built into the RDA for protein and actually represents a little over twice as much as our bodies actually need.
3. Our body gets all but 1/6 of the protein it needs from recycling old body tissue. This amounts to 100-300 grams. The 1/6 we don't recycle must come from essential amino acids we eat.
4. Hard work does not require more protein!
5. Protein is required for growing, body repair, and maintenance. A person with serious physical injuries or illness requires much more protein.
6. If we do not get enough protein, our bodies will steal it from our muscles. This is also true when we are ill. We need more protein, but often can't eat it.
7. North Americans generally eat 3 to 5 times more protein than they need. The protein not needed is broken down further and most of it is used to make energy. However there is some left over product from this process which is not good for our bodies.
8. We can only absorb about 25 grams of protein at one time. The rest is broken down and burned or stored as fat.
"All things are lawful; but not all things are advantageous."