How Much Protein Is Too Much

Protein is an important nutrient. It supplies your body with essential amino acids that it needs to build its own proteins, which are the building blocks for most of the cells in your body. Some cells are protein-intense, and require a high amount of protein intake to be built regularly. So it’s good to get protein in your diet. However, it can be a problem if you get too much protein. Here’s how to find out the right amount of protein for your diet and what can happen if you get too much.

Recommended Protein Doses

It is generally recommended that you get 10-35% of your caloric intake in the form of protein. That’s a pretty large range, and the right amount for you depends on what your goals are and what kind of diet you want to eat. Typically, the recommended dosage for protein is about 56 grams per day for men, 46 grams per day for women.

Special Cases

Some people need more or less protein depending on their needs. Vegetarians, for example, may have to eat more proteins overall in an attempt to balance the incomplete plant proteins. However, it’s important to try not to get too much, and watch for symptoms of problems (see below).

Pregnant and nursing women need significantly more protein than other women. A pregnant woman needs about 10 grams more protein and a nursing woman needs about 20 grams more.

Watch for the Signs of Ketosis

The problem with getting too much protein is that it can lead to ketosis. When your body breaks down fats and proteins, it makes ketones, which can be used for energy, but may also be hard on your kidneys. Whether ketosis is actually harmful or not is controversial, but you should watch for the following symptoms that may indicate problems with your diet:

  • Fatigue

  • Dehydration

  • Bad breath

  • Dizziness

  • Heart palpitations

If you experience them while on a high protein diet, you should talk to your doctor.

For detailed diet guidance that is physician directed for your health and weight loss goals, please contact Med-Fit Medical Weight Loss Clinic in the Stapleton area of Denver.

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Dr. Angela Tran