How much protein do I need when reducing my caloric intake?

How much protein do I need when reducing my caloric intake?

Calocurb can be an essential tool used as part of a comprehensive diet plan to manage the restriction of calories during a weight-loss regime. To attain healthy weight loss, the body must have available fuel to coordinate its usual day to day tasks. This blog will explore the main recommendations for effectively managing your diet macros during your weight loss journey.

Healthy calorie restriction depends on decreasing calorie intake without depriving your body of essential nutrients and building blocks.  It is essential that your body needs fuel to be broken down from these three main macronutrients found in your diet: carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. 

Protein is a macronutrient that plays an important role in every part of your body. It serves as the building block for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, blood, enzymes, hormones, and vitamins. Proteins are considered essential to feeling fuller for longer and promoting weight loss while maintaining your lean muscle mass!

Average recommendations range from 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight with a sedentary lifestyle. This protein intake is expected to be increased to 1.8–2.7g/ kg  when there is the intention of weight training and caloric restriction for a weight-loss diet or caloric restriction above 15%. 

A 2018 study showed that weight loss through a 20% caloric restriction leads to a decrease in lean muscle tissue. One of the proven ways to increase or maintain your metabolism, is to increase or maintain your lean muscle mass. To offset this decrease in lean muscle tissue and reduce the overall visceral fat (this is the type of fat that leads to metabolic risk), it is recommended to increase protein intake by as much as 30% of your daily diet. Protein intake aids in satiety, prevents overeating, helps increase fat burn, and helps regulate body weight. 

For a 65 kg woman who is looking to restrict caloric intake and increase  training, an increase in protein intake should be considered to be between 104 and 143 grams of protein a day. For an average sized male of 85 kg, up to 187 g of protein per day seems to be a good level to aim for.

Meat, eggs, and dairy products contain the highest amount of protein per serving. But vegetables, especially legumes and soybeans, can be a good source of protein, as well. Other plant-based protein sources include whole grains, seeds, and nuts.

We want to have a fist-sized portion of a protein food at every meal, as that amount supplies between 25 and 30g of protein. Supplementing with protein powder on days when you're doing heavier muscle-building exercise will increase your overall intake by at least 20 g of protein per serving. 

Try to add these high-protein foods at each of your meal-times. You can use the calculations below:

  • Eggs (6 g each)
  • Dairy (a 250ml glass of milk or 2 slices of cheese  will provide you with around 8-10g protein)
  • Whole Grain bread (13 g per slice)
  • Peanut butter (16 g per tablespoon)
  • Chia seeds (4.6 g per tablespoon)
  • Lentils (18 g for one cup)
  • Chickpeas (14.5 g per cup)
  • Beans (up to 15 g per cup)
  • Lean fish (20 g per 100 g serving)
  • Skinless grilled chicken (25 g per 100 g serving)
  • Beef, lamb, veal (up to 26 g per 100 g serving)
  • Tofu  (10g protein in 1/2 cup)
  • Mushroom (4g of protein per cup)

In conclusion, we can say that increasing the protein intake during a time of restricted calorie restriction will maintain lean muscle mass while reducing overall fat. 

Calocurb is a key tool in stimulating the release of key appetite suppressing gut peptides (GLP-1, CCK and PYY) contributing to increased feelings of fullness during times of calorie restriction by up to 20%. At Calocurb, we recommend increasing your protein intake by at least 1.6 g/kg of body weight in females and at least 1.8 g/kg for males when undergoing a daily caloric restriction of 20%. 

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