Your diet needs to contain protein for your muscles to stay strong. And strong muscles are necessary for avoiding falls and building strong bones.
This might suggest that by adding more protein to your diet, you can develop stronger muscles to strengthen your bones. However, a new study has found that this is not so.
Once you've consumed the amount of protein your body needs, more protein doesn't provide additional benefits or allow you to build additional muscle mass. The Save Institute's approach of moderation and balance has been proven correct once again.
Today we'll take a close look at that study and you'll learn how much and what kind of protein you should be consuming. Then you'll get a delicious protein-rich recipe that's easy to make and ready in minutes.
More Protein Doesn't Always Mean More Muscle
Researchers conducted a new study on the impacts of protein consumption on muscle strength and development. Fifty overweight middle-aged men and women enrolled in a resistance training program for 10 weeks.
They were divided into two groups. One group consumed a moderate amount of protein (0.8-1 gram per kg of body weight per day) and the second group ate a large amount of protein (1.6 – 1.8 gram per kg of body weight per day).
After each exercise session, the moderate intake group ate three ounces of beef and the high intake group ate six ounces. Before bed, each participant drank a protein shake containing either 15 or 30 grams of protein, respectively.
The two groups did the same exercise routine, but they consumed different amounts of protein.
Before and after the ten weeks, the researchers measured the participants’ muscle strength, performance, and body composition. At the end of the ten weeks, researchers discovered that the moderate protein intake group had the same gains in muscle strength and performance as the high intake group. Differences in body mass change between the groups were insignificant.1
The consumption of double the protein did not result in increased muscle mass, nor strength.1
Fifty overweight men and women participated in a ten-week resistance training program and were divided into two groups. One was assigned a moderate protein intake level and the other a high protein intake level. After the ten weeks, the researchers found that the difference in protein intake levels didn't result in a difference in muscle strength or mass change between the groups.
How Much Protein Do You Need
The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of protein for adults is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight per day. However, that recommendation may not be sufficient for older people- especially those with active lifestyles.
The Journal of Gerontology published a study recommending a protein intake between 1.2 and 2.0 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day or more for elderly adults. 2
Ultimately, the Save Institute doesn't recommend counting grams of protein. If each of your meals contains a healthy source of protein then you're on the right track. Not only will this help you to ensure you're getting enough protein, but studies have found that spreading out your protein intake across your day maximizes new muscle synthesis. 3
The RDA for protein is 0.8 grams per kg of body weight per day. But one study recommends between 1.2 and 2 grams per kg of body weight per day for elderly adults. Instead of weighing and counting grams of protein, simply make sure that you're including a healthy source of protein in each meal of the day.
What Kind Of Protein Do You Need?
You may have noticed that the study above specifically used beef as a protein source. That's because the study was funded by the beef industry. While a small amount of lean organic grass-fed beef can be part of a bone-healthy diet, based on the 80/20 pH-balance principle, you should also consume protein from plant sources because animal proteins are acidifying.
Fortunately, there are plenty of protein-rich plant foods to enjoy. Check out this list of plant protein options, all of which are also bone-building Foundation Foods:
- Pumpkin seeds*
- Plain Yogurt*
- Mustard greens*
- Crimini mushrooms*
- Collard greens*
- Green peas*
- Kidney beans*
- Pinto beans*
- Garbanzo beans*
- Black Beans *
Since animal protein is acidifying, make sure you consume enough protein from plant sources. See the list above for protein-rich plant foods that are also bone-building Foundation Foods.
Alkalizing No-Bake Protein Balls
This alkalizing recipe provides a delectable protein boost and is a great on-the-go snack that will keep you energized and provide your body with the protein it needs. It doubles as a tasty treat and a great way to ensure you're spreading out your protein consumption over the course of the day. It contains whey, an alkalizing protein that's found in the liquid leftover from the process of making cheese and yogurt. Whey is an excellent source of bone-healthy lactoferrin. The latter promotes osteoblast differentiation and proliferation and inhibits the production of osteoclasts, the cells that tear down bone.
Perfect Protein Balls
Servings: 15 balls
- 1 cup whey protein powder
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice seasoning
- 3/4 tsp of stevia extract (adjust to desired sweetness)
- Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl and combine well.
- Roll 15 balls and place them on a tray.
- Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
What This Means To You
Follow the Osteoporosis Reversal Program's 80/20 pH-balanced diet, and be sure to include a healthy source of protein in every meal.3 It's really that simple.
Planning, preparing, and eating your meals should be unstressful and enjoyable. Otherwise, you won't be able to build healthy dietary habits that last.
Food should be a highlight of your day, not a source of anxiety. Keep trying new recipes, experimenting with ingredients, and taking pleasure in nourishing your body and your bones.