How much protein do you really need per day?
Protein is an essential macronutrient. Without protein, no organism could survive or even be built, because amino acids, among other things, form the basis for all your cells. That's why we rely on a daily intake through food and nutritional supplements.
Do you pay attention to your protein consumption every day? If so, great – that puts you ahead of many people.
But are you actually consuming enough protein to meet your needs?
How much is “enough protein” for your individual needs and circumstances?
If you don't know this or are still in doubt, you've come to the right place to find out how much protein you need per day. In this post we will help you calculate your daily recommended protein consumption. This means you are on the safe side and can benefit from all the unique benefits of proteins and stay healthy for a long time.
Lack of amino acids - the consequences
A deficiency of amino acids is not only dangerous, but unfortunately also not uncommon, depending on your individual circumstances. Your daily need for high-quality proteins can range from 0.8 g to 2.7 g per kg of body weight .
When consuming proteins, you should consider a few points in order to not only achieve your visual goals, but also to achieve a stable immune system, a good hormonal balance and the best possible performance in everyday life.
If you know the benefits and benefits of amino acids in your body, you probably understand that a daily lack of protein can lead to these symptoms:
Possible consequences of a permanent amino acid deficiency:
- Slump in muscular performance
- Loss of muscle mass
- Constant feeling of hunger & cravings
- Tiredness, fatigue, headaches
- Lack of motivation
- Concentration problems
- Hormonal imbalances
- Slowed cell production or cell renewal
- Brittle toenails and toenails
- Signs of aging on the skin
- Brittle hair
- Circulation and blood clotting disorders
- and more…
A long and serious list. Many symptoms that cannot be traced back to a clear chronic or acute clinical picture can be the consequences of an unbalanced diet with too little protein.
A healthy diet begins with an optimized composition of macronutrients, which include proteins (proteins / amino acids), fats and carbohydrates. You can understand these as raw materials for your body, from which it renews itself every day and draws its energy.
Imagine your body as a car engine that requires diesel. And you fill up with gas. This is exactly what happens when you don't get your macronutrients adequately or from inferior sources.
You certainly want to have oil, fuel and brake fluid in high-quality and sufficient quantities to avoid engine damage. Because we know: it will be expensive!
An incorrect or inadequate diet will sooner or later lead to various diseases that could easily have been prevented with a healthy lifestyle.
While many people swear by expensive care products or miracle cures, you can get many of the symptoms mentioned under control by adjusting your protein intake and easily integrate preventative health care into your everyday diet.
How much protein a day makes sense for you?
Unfortunately, there is no general answer to this question because there are many factors that influence your daily protein requirements.
- Mainly the body weight,
- sporting stress,
- possible clinical pictures and the
- Foods or protein sources from which you get your amino acids .
Your daily protein intake can be determined based on these influencing factors .
How much protein per day for women and men?
When we talk about proteins per day, we are always talking about the intake of the indispensable or essential amino acids .
The DGE (German Society for Nutrition) recommends 0.8 g of protein from essential amino acids per kg of body weight per day for adults aged 19 and over . This is an initial value that ensures that there are no shortages.
55 kg woman: 55 x 0.8 g = 44 g protein per day
80 kg man: 80 x 0.8 g = 64 g protein per day
Determine your weight (without clothing) and multiply it by a factor of 0.8. This will help you calculate your daily protein requirement.
Do you achieve at least this value every day ?
How much protein in old age?
Various studies show that protein consumption becomes more important as we age. As we get older, the externally supplied amino acids can no longer be metabolized properly, which results in an increased supply.
This is where meeting daily needs is particularly important due to limited regenerative abilities and to protect the immune system.
The DGE recommends that people over 65 consume 1 g of protein per kg of body weight per day . This value is given as an estimate. But it serves as a good reminder for us not to fall below this limit.
55 kg woman: 55 x 1 g = 55 g protein per day
80 kg man: 80 x 1 g = 80 g protein per day
For people aged 65 and over, it is important to ensure a protein consumption in grams that is at least equivalent to your body weight in kilograms.
In summary, it can be said that an intake of 1.0-1.3 g of protein per kg of body weight can be recommended for people aged 60-65 and over . Most studies recommend this area.
How much protein to build muscle?
How much daily protein is effective for building muscle can be meaningfully illustrated based on current studies. Even if the DGE still recommends 0.8 g for athletes, it is clear that this amount is not enough for optimal muscle building. This recommendation is outdated.
A variety of different study results from the past two decades calculate two to four times the amount of high-quality proteins that should be taken throughout the day without side effects.
Especially during diet phases, it is recommended that a healthy person significantly increase their protein requirements. In diets, the body is even more dependent on proteins from the diet so that it breaks down body fat rather than muscle.
The following table should help you classify your daily protein requirements based on your situation and your goals.
General basic intake for men and women aged 19 and over
People aged 60-65 years and over
Goal muscle building, hobby athlete (man or woman)
Goal of maintaining muscle in a diet phase (man or woman)
Goal muscle building strength athlete / bodybuilder (man or woman)
Goal muscle maintenance strength athlete / bodybuilder (man or woman)
0.8 g per kg of body weight
1-1.3 g per kg of body weight
1.5-1.8 g per kg of body weight
1.8-2.4 g per kg body weight
1.8-2.4 g per kg body weight
2.1-2.7 g per kg of body weight
The values in the table refer to high-quality protein sources. That means on the essential amino acids . The topic of the biological value can help you with this as a guide.
It's important to understand that you don't let the terms "muscle builder", "strength athlete" or "bodybuilder" scare you away. You won't build muscle if you eat more protein. This only happens in conjunction with optimized, long-term and extreme strength training , in which the targeted aim is to build muscle. And even then, many exercisers fail to achieve sustained muscle growth. So don't be afraid to increase your protein consumption. The advantages of protein are out of all proportion to the possible disadvantages.
Basically, it can be said that every type of exercise and exercise benefits from well-trained muscles. In general, this means that if you regularly do some form of physical activity, an increased amount of protein will reliably support you.
Conclusion: How much protein should you consume now?
If you exercise and your muscles are important to you, you can increase your protein consumption. This supports your sporting performance, your ability to regenerate, but also your general performance in everyday life. In this case , ranges of 1.4 – 2 g of protein can be classified as harmless.
If your goal is to lose weight, increasing your protein intake will also help you achieve this. Nobody wants to lose hard-earned muscle, but preferably fat. We are not just talking about the aesthetic aspect, but primarily also about the functional aspect. We don't mean Arnold Schwarzenegger when we talk about muscles. Don't forget that your muscles control your every movement in everyday life. More muscle mass means more performance - in every situation - as well as increased passive fat burning throughout the day. Each kg of muscle tissue burns five times the number of calories per day compared to body fat. In a diet, your intake should therefore be increased and be between 1.8 - 2.7 g per kg of body weight (depending on your individual body composition and requirements).
Since proteins have many other health benefits and consumption in the range of 2 g per kg of body weight per day is proven to be harmless, we recommend that you experiment. Determine a suitable value for yourself between 0.8 - 2.7 g per kg of body weight per day - every day. You can find out how and when to best consume proteins and protein shakes here. (Post will come on February 26, 2023)
Always make sure that you consume the proteins throughout the day, as our bodies do not have full protein stores. Simplified: Eat a protein-rich food source with every meal . If this is not possible, you can confidently turn to healthy, high-quality protein powders , as they have a very high biological value and no other side effects. Many expensive and high-quality foods cannot come close to these values. The fewer additives there are in your protein powder or protein powder, the more likely you are to benefit from the essential amino acids.
You can use protein powder in recipes at any time . Be creative and develop your own recipes or swap existing components with protein powders to meet needs. For example, we have developed our protein porridge, the Protein Goatmeal , to provide a low-calorie, but at the same time protein-rich meal for morning, lunch, evening or in between.
Are you not a fan of porridge but want to ensure your protein supply? Incorporate Weide Whey or A2 Casein into your day. Our protein powders are popular as a creamy protein shake before or after training. Because of their consistency, these are particularly suitable as additions to recipes. Lots of high-quality protein that you can rely on.
The lower limit is that you should never go below 0.8 g per day . In the practice of a nutritionist, I recommend that clients who already do occasional physical activity consume amounts of around 1.5 g of protein from high-quality sources as a starting point.
These values are often increased by clients, as they regularly report a significant decrease in the feeling of hunger and a general better well-being , as well as positive changes in body shape and clearly see the connection in protein intake .
Feel free to try it out and let us know how it works for you.
Would you like to find out more about protein?
- Lykaia Protein Guide for 2023
- Protein shakes before or after training
- Vegan protein - what should you pay attention to?
We look forward to hearing your experiences!
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Your Lykaia team