How Much Protein Do You Need?
What does this result mean?
Your result takes into consideration your body type and activity level so that it is specific for you. It does not account for any health conditions that may affect your protein needs. Your result is an estimation of the amount of protein you would need to meet your body's protein needs with your current physical activity routine. If your activity level changes, please come back and recalculate your needs.
Why is the result a range?
It represents the percentage of daily calories coming from protein, ranging from 20% to 30%. This target can vary depending on your personal goals. According to the Intentional Society of Sports Nutrition, individuals who participate in general exercise should be able to meet their protein needs with 15-20% of their daily calories from protein. Athletes involved in moderate to high-intensity exercise training or who have specific fitness goals may want to consider a higher % coming from protein. Consider chatting with a registered dietician to make sure your intake is adequate.
What is the RDA?
Great question! There is a bare minimum amount that healthy adults should hit every day and that's approximately 1 gram of protein per kilogram of bodyweight. This is the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) needed to keep you from wasting muscle mass. But, that number does not take into consideration things like age or activity.
What should I do next?
- If you've never tracked your daily protein intake before, we'd recommend starting there. You can track with simple free apps like My Fitness Pal or pen and paper.
- Once you have an idea of where your current protein levels are at, you can start adjusting as needed to meet your needs. Increasing to meet your goal may be easier to do gradually in daily 10-15 gram increments to prevent feeling too full or overwhelmed.
- How do I add more protein to my day? We all know that food is fuel for the body so we want to start there with food first, but we also know that busy schedules, meal planning, and just "eating more" isn't always that easy.
- That's where OnUp water shines! With 22 grams of grassfed whey protein and only 90 calories, it can take you from a protein deficit to protein adequate within minutes. Shop now and try it for yourself.
- Check out the sample menu from Anywhere Nutrition for ideas to help you hit your targets (see top left corner of screen and sign up for it to be emailed to you).
- Post Workout Timing is Important: It is important to get protein within 30-60 minutes post workout to repair your muscles. Whey protein is a fast-digesting protein. See our Why Protein blog for more info.
- Amount of Protein Post Workout Matters: Initiating muscle repair, through a process called muscle protein synthesis, requires hitting a threshold of 2.5g of leucine (the critical BCAA responsible for repairing our muscles) to trigger the process. OnUp is formulated with 22g of whey protein to hit this leucine threshold. See our Why 22g blog for more details.
- Not All Protein is Created Equal: We need protein that is high quality and complete, meaning it contains all the essential amino acids. Dairy proteins, such as whey, lead the pack on protein quality scores. This means that if you're drinking lower quality protein like soy or pea protein, you'll need to increase your target amounts and find complimentary protein sources to get everything your body needs. Whey checks ALL the protein boxes on its own. See our Why Whey blog for more details.
- Time of Day Matters: Your body can't store protein for the future so make sure to spread your protein intake out throughout the day. The Anywhere Nutrition menu has some great examples.
- OnUp Protein Water is an efficient source of protein so you can hit your protein macros with minimal calories.
Emily Niswanger, MS, RDN, LD, IFNCP; Anywhere Nutrition, Minneapolis, MN
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- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 51, Issue 2, February 1990, Pages 241– 247, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/51.2.241
Kersick et al. ISSN exercise & sports nutrition review update: research & recommendations. 2018. https://jissn.