What is Protein? How is it important for a human body?
The human body requires a lot of nutrients and other vital sources for healthy functioning. Protein is the most versatile molecule and the key to all the biological processes inside a human body. As per the dieticians and medical professionals, the average dietary allowance of Protein that is recommended to a person is always calculated according to their body weight. In other words, 1 gram of protein can be taken for every 1 kilogram of weight that the person has on a general basis.
On average, an adult can be advised to take 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of their body weight. Now, the questions arise, how much Protein is too much that can cause the problem to your body. The dietary allowance or RDA for the recommendation of Protein varies from person to person. It mainly depends upon the following factors –
- Activity and workout
- Metabolic rate
- Other medical issues
Along with this, if a woman who is pregnant or breastfeeding her child, she will be recommended individually. It is always better to consult a dietician first before you start with a proper protein diet.
What happens if you eat too much Protein?
Many people who start taking Protein to build up good physic; they do not know how much Protein is too much for them. As a result of it, they end up causing trouble to their health and the whole body functioning.
There are people who consume 2 grams of Protein for the per kg of their body weight for a long time, and yet they do not develop any signs of side effects. And, some athletes may even take 3.5k gram of Protein for their per kg body weight. However, the researchers say that taking more than 2 grams of Protein for a prolonged time can cause severe health problems.
These are the symptoms that are associated with taking too much of Protein –
- Indigestion and intestinal discomfort
- Unexplained exhaustion
- Headache and nausea
The daily RDA for Protein that can be taken as per the IOM (Institute of Medicine) is as follows –
- Infants between the age of 0 to 6 months – 9.1 grams/day.
- Infants between the age of 6 to 12 months – 11 grams/day.
- Children between the age of 1 to 3 years – 13 grams/day.
- Children between the age of 4 to 8 years – 19 grams/day.
- Males between the age of 9 to 14 years – 35 grams/day.
- Males between the age of 15 to 20 years – 52 grams/day.
- Males above the age of 20 – 56 grams/day.
- Females between the age of 9 to 15 years – 34 grams/day.
- Females above the age of 15 – 46 grams/day.
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women of all age – 70 grams/day.
Remember that being physically active plays an important role in the intake of Protein. It may increase over time as you keep on pushing yourself for more stamina build-up.
Is too much protein bad?
The intake of any nutrient in a high amount for a long time comes with risk, and so is in the case with Protein. In simple words, consumption of anything in excess amount will certainly result into health issues and other complications. Though there are potential benefits of taking high-protein diet, it’s important to know about the health concerns that comes along with it.
- Increase in body weight – It is true that high-protein diets will help in weight loss, but it will be seen for a short time. When you eat excess Protein, it will get stored as fat, and the amino acids are excreted out of the system. It will eventually result into weight gain over time.
- Develop a bad breath – Many people are seen to develop bad breath due to a large amount of protein intake. It mainly happens to occur when you restrict your diet and stop taking carbohydrates.
- Kidney damage – As per the reports, people who suffer from kidney disease are at a higher risk of Kidney damage. It is because of the nitrogen found in the amino acids of Protein. Thus, if your kidney is damaged, then it has to work hard to get rid of the nitrogen from the body. Furthermore, it will result in kidney damage.
- Dehydration – When you are continuously taking the high-protein diet, your body will function more actively. As a result of this, it will flush out the excess nitrogen and, along with it, other fluids and water. Though you may not feel thirsty, you will get dehydrated every now and then.
- Constipation – In a recent study, more than 44% of people who are on a high-protein diet have reported constipation. It is because these diets restrict the consumption of carbohydrates that contain fiber.