How Much Protein Should You Eat?

This question gets asked frequently and often times it’s not even considered. Most athletes we do consults with are getting around 50% of what we would recommend to regular class attendees.

If one were to type in the title above into a search engine there would be a variety of different recommendations. Needs vary due to sex, age, exercise frequency, and goals.

We recommend athletes aim for a gram of protein/lb of body-weight to build and maintain muscle. We measure athletes skeletal muscle using an in-body composition machine and adjust protein in-take accordingly.

The typical recommended amount for athletes or the average person is around .7-.8 grams/kg of body-weight. We find this to be inadequate for athletes and anyone looking to lose weight.

One great thing about protein is that it helps to make you feel full. There are 4 calories/gram of protein, 4 calories for carbs, and 9 for fats. Carbs tend to drive further hunger, while protein and fats lead to satiety.

So where to start? Aim for 1 gram/lb of body-weight if you are training 4-6x/week. If you are in the 2-3x/week you should be good at .8+-/lb of body-weight. The best way to determine your needs is to meet with a qualified coach and test/re-test over the course of 6-8 weeks using a diagnostics tool such as the In-Body Scanner we use at CrossFit HSE.

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