High protein diets for weight loss
Is the RDA of protein enough?
The average American diet consists of approximately 10-20% protein with fat and carbohydrates consuming the vast majority of daily intake, and; while there's absolutely nothing wrong with this macronutrient split for the regular Joe, is it really optimal for those aiming for fat loss? lets find out.
What does the Science say?
A few large randomized trials and several small trials conducted over the years have compared the effect of high-protein diets (20–35% of calories from protein; 1.2–1.9 g/kg∙day) to normal-protein diets (10–20% of calories from protein; 0.8–1.3 g/kg∙day), consumed after clinically significant weight loss. Most of these studies indicate that weight regain in the short term (3–12 months) is lower by 1–2 kg with high-protein diets than low-protein diets.
Several other clinical trials have found that consuming more protein than the recommended dietary allowance not only reduces body weight (BW), but also enhances body composition by decreasing fat mass while preserving fat-free mass (FFM) in both low-calorie and standard-calorie diets.
Thus the general consensus shows that consuming higher than recommended levels of protein is beneficial when it comes to fat loss, weight loss and maintenance following loss in the long term.
Need help creating your own perfect Protein/Carbohydrate/Fat ratio?
Is the 20-35% range safe for my long term health?
HPD (high protein diet) has not been reported to have adverse effects on health in terms of bone density or renal function in healthy adults.
How HPD increases energy
expenditure involves two aspects: first, proteins have a higher thermogenic effect (DIT: dietary intake thermogenesis) than carbohydrates and fats meaning it takes more energy to break down proteins. Second, protein intake prevents a decrease in fat free mass, which helps maintain resting energy expenditure despite weight loss.
In conclusion, HPD is an effective and safe tool for weight reduction that can prevent obesity and obesity-related diseases. Win Win!
Is there such a thing as too much Protein?
The short answer is yes. As with anything in life there can be too much of a good thing.
Very high protein diets can leave you more susceptible to kidney stones. Too much red meat and high saturated fats can increase the risk of heart disease or colon cancer. It is recommended that even if consuming a HPD not to consume more then 2gm/kg of bodyfat.
Bottom line, eat your protein peeps. you don't have to rigidly track every macro, micro and food morsel that enters your mouth to achieve your goals. In fact for sustainable weight loss I wouldn't even recommend it. what I would recommend however is educating yourself on what foods are great sources of lean protein and incorporate more of those foods into your meals spread out throughout your eating window.
Want to Learn more about how the right macronutrient percentages can help you reach your fat loss/body composition goals?
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