One of the main building blocks of our body is protein which makes up as much as 16% of our body weight. Our skin, hair and muscle tissues are made up of proteins – we need a good amount of protein in our diet everyday. How much protein do you need? This depends completely on our activity level, size and age. There is a standard method which is used to estimate the minimum protein requirements of our body. You need to multiply your body weight in kg by .8. The quantity derived is the requirement of protein in a day.

Most of us get this requirement quantity of protein through our diet, but remember that with age this requirement keeps changing. Proteins are needed for bones, muscles and the rest of your body.

Here are some more facts about protein requirements –

  • A baby needs around 10 grams a day.
  • Teenage boys should get 52 grams a day.
  • Teenage girls should have 46 grams a day.
  • Adult men need to have around 56 grams a day.
  • Adult women should have around 46 grams a day. If pregnant or breastfeeding this is 71gm in a day.

Athletes – How much protein do they need?
Yes, athletes certainly need more proteins than others since they engage in a lot of endurance exercises like running and also highly resistive exercises that includes body building. They need an additional dose of protein in their diet which helps in building muscles and normal functioning of the body. If you are an athlete, you need to have at least 1.7 gm of protein in a day for every kg of your body weight. Below this, it will create protein deficiency in your body.

How Much Protein Do Pregnant Women Need?
Pregnant women need to have 10 grams more than needed by a woman in a day. There are several nutritionists that quote a percentage of calories, as a basis to finding out the requirements of protein to consume in a day. This was usually in the range of 10-20% but would vary depending on activity level. People with lot more activities will need more quantity of protein.

Are you getting your required quantity of protein? What can happen if you do not have the right quantity?
Our body does not have much capacity to store protein unlike glucose and fat. If your body is not getting the right quantity of protein, it will start breaking down the muscles to meet its need. You will start feeling exhausted and weaker than before. It is important to have the adequate quantity of proteins for good and better health.

Having protein does not simply mean you can have any kind of protein – it is important to have good quality proteins. Some of the best good proteins are seafood, white meat poultry, milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs, beef, pork tenderloin, soy and lean beef.

Are you getting enough proteins everyday?