For active, working-out individuals one has to consume around 2 grams protein per kilogram of body weight for men and about 1 to 1.5 gm per kilo of body weight for women. It means that if you are a male and weigh 70 kilograms, your daily requirement would be about 140 gm of protein.
For sedentary individuals (who are least active) 0.8 gm protein per kilo of bodyweight is the recommendation, which would be about 56 grams for a male weighing 70 kilograms. Generally the big mistake lies in not understanding the difference in protein requirements between active people and sedentary people.
If one is getting the requisite quantum of protein from food then we don’t need to supplement, but if we are not (which is the case 90% of the times) then one should supplement the diet with protein supplements..
For example if one needs 50 gm of protein and the individual is getting 40 gm from food then the rest 10gm should be obtained through a supplement. It’s as simple as that.
Milk, milk powders and milk products, pulses, egg, fish, meat and its products are the major protein contributors in our diets. On taking a closer look at the daily diets, it is evident that we almost always fail to be even close to the recommended amounts. Only people making conscious efforts to mandatorily include protein rich food and supplements in meals meet the recommendations.
For example a moderately active (exercises thrice a week) housewife weighing 50 kilograms requires to consume around 50 gm of total protein (1 g protein per kilogram of bodyweight). In her daily diet she consumes four chapatis, 2 breads, 2 cups (1 cup measures 150 ml) of dal, 200 ml full fat buffalo milk, 1 cup curds, 1 fruit, two to three helpings of vegetables.
4 chapatis gives around 9 gm protein, 2 medium size white breads gives around 3.3 g protein, 2 cups dal gives around 14 gm protein, 200ml buffalo milk gives around 8.6 gm protein and 1 cup curds gives around 6.5 gm protein.
This amounts to a total of 41 gm protein versus the recommended amount of 50 gm per day. Also taking into account the bioavailability and absorption losses our body actually falls short of protein. Most of us consuming 2 cups of dal and enough milk would boast of our diets being protein rich. Though the diet being nutritious, balanced and wholesome, in reality falls short of the most important macronutrient PROTEIN. Apart from bodybuilders, Protein supplements are extremely important for people whose daily needs are not met by diet alone. Children, Elderly, people who do not eat well, people who stay away from home greatly benefit from some kind of protein supplement. Even women during pregnancy or lactation have to consume extra protein. One can mix a protein supplement in milk, milkshake, juice or water. It could be had once or twice a day in between meals, with the meal or before a meal or even as a meal replacer if necessary. While it is theoretically better to stick to fresh, natural foods, protein supplements taken daily will rather benefit the body to meet its protein needs.
We can through simple means upbeat the protein intake of our diets. Below are a few simple ways to do it:
- Consuming sprouts, whole pulses in breakfast or mid meals.
- Consuming judicious amounts of zero fat milk and low fat curds.
- Addition of skim milk powder to milk, milk shakes, lassi, wheat flour.
- Mixing wheat flour with pulse flours and millet flours.
- Adding ready grain mixes or nutri mixes like saffola diabetic mix to food preparations like pancakes, idlis, dosas, dhoklas etc.
- Consuming egg whites instead of whole eggs.
- Adding readily available protein supplements like protinex, hummyl powder, resource high protein powder, amway’s nutrilite to skim milk.