…continued – Protein
The first question that most will ask is, “How much protein should I be consuming each day?”. This is important and over the years I have refined what has shown to be the most effective protein intake levels for building muscle.
Your daily protein intake should account for no less than 53% of your total caloric intake. This caloric intake percentage is important as it will also effect the protein intake level depending on the individual and their specific caloric needs. Everyone is different and although two people may have the same physical build and weight, they could differ drastically in the amount of calories they require to maintain a steady bodyweight.
So if you are 200 pounds and eat 4000 calories per day then your protein intake will be 530 grams per day (4000 x 53% / 4 = 530). If you are 200 pounds and eat 3100 calories per day then your protein intake will be 411 grams per day (3100 x 53% / 4 = 411).
There are individuals who have ultra-slow metabolisms and eat fewer calories per day. Less total calories will mean less total protein intake. When trying to gain muscle mass you never want to go below 2 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. If you weigh 200 pounds and you’re trying to gain muscle mass you want to make sure you are getting at least 400 grams of protein per day.
To some of you this may sound excessive, but believe me it’s not. If you need to consume 4000 calories per day in order to fuel muscle growth, you need to realize that the calories have to come from somewhere. If you lower your protein intake or don’t meet the 53% level, but you are still taking in 4000 calories, then those other calories are coming from somewhere else – either carbohydrates or fat. And let me tell you, carbohydrates don’t build muscle and fat certainly does not build muscle. Only protein builds muscle.
To put this protein level into perspective, 400 grams of protein is only 1600 calories. So though the total number may seem large it’s really not.
Remember, only protein builds muscle.
No other anabolic stimulus can build muscle without protein to supply the building material.
The more efficient the protein and the higher the quality, the more effectively it will contribute to muscle growth.
quality of the protein is of utmost importance.
If you’re consuming 400 grams of a cheap, low quality whey protein, you’ll still be cheating your body out of the muscle-building material it needs to grow optimally. It’s like using a cheap paint to paint your house. You might initially save money, but before the job is done you will have spent more money and much more time and effort applying the extra coats of paint just to get the desired results.