Why is Protein Important?

For my first edition of “Let’s Talk Nutrition” with Coach Sara, we are going to cover Protein.

First, why is protein important?

Well, for starters every cell in the human body contains protein. You need protein in your diet to help your body repair cells and make new ones. Protein is also important for growth and development, so for athlete’s protein plays an important role in an athlete’s ability to repair and recover from soreness, as well as, strengthen and build muscle tissue.

Second, how much protein do we need?

Although the amount can vary from person to person depending on body type and goals, a rule of thumb is 1 to 1.2 grams of protein, per pound of body weight, per day. So, does this mean that you need to go buy a food scale and weigh and measure your food every day for the rest of your life?

Short answer, NO.

But the long answer, for a few days at least, YES.

Knowing how much we are currently eating is the only way to know if we are getting too much or not enough protein in our diets. There is a free app called Myfitnesspal that you can download on your phone and log everything in throughout your day. It is one of the best tools available out there, and as you get to know how much protein is in the foods you eat you can learn to intuitively reach your goals on your own.

There are many different ways for us to get protein into our meals and it is recommended to break your protein up throughout the day, specifically at each meal, to help you reach your personal goals. I, usually, have about 3-5 meals a day and rarely have any problem hitting my protein goals.

Here are some options of protein sources to help you get there:

Eggs, cottage cheese, yogurt, chickpeas, black beans, chicken, turkey, tuna, beef, pork, tofu, and edamame to name a few.

The goal is to get the majority of our protein from real food sources but that isn’t always possible so a protein supplement can help. The best time to add those protein supplements in is post workout and before bedtime. For more information on different protein supplements click here.

Remember this is just a baseline. If you want to dive deeper into nutrition with me or have a more specific goal setup a “no snack intro.”

Also, if you have more questions you would like me to answer let me know. I would love to send out more “Let’s Talk Nutrition” emails to help cover all those questions I know you all have.

Have great days Fitfam and see you all soon!

Coach Sara

[email protected]

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