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Q: I want to step up my exercise routine in 2015. Does this mean I need to be using protein powders and supplements?

Posted December 31, 2014 in Advice Column, Johnston


A: Absolutely not. Protein powders are excellent for the convenience factor, but the amount of protein our bodies require can definitely be met through diet. There is no scientific evidence that supplements offer an advantage over protein-dense foods. The Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) for protein are as follows:

  • Women ages 19+ = 46 grams of protein needed each day
  • Men ages 19+ = 56 grams of protein needed each day

Those with special dietary instructions related to disease may require more or less protein based on individual needs. As far as increasing your exercise routine, more protein in your diet may be necessary based on your current diet, and time as well as intensity of your physical activity. It may be beneficial to visit with a dietitian to attain in-depth calculations of your nutrient requirements.

Be sure to keep in mind that it is still important to incorporate carbohydrates and lean fat along with protein in your diet. When carbohydrate reserves are low in our bodies, a body turns to protein as an energy source when protein is needed elsewhere in the body. Sources of protein include lean meat, seafood and dairy, eggs, legumes and tofu.

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