Evidently carbs are out and protein is king! While I agree, laying off starchy carbs will help to trim the waistline, and increasing protein consumption will likely promote muscle gains, how do you know when you’re overdoing it?
The majority of us consume far more protein on a daily basis than necessary. Estimating adequate protein needs requires converting one’s weight from pounds to kilograms and multiplying that number by the RDA for protein. Assuming the average (non-athlete) man weighs 75 kg (165lbs) and the average woman, 65kg (143lbs). Their protein requirements are respectively 60 and 52g per day.
Just so we’re clear, My Fitness Pal clocks a 6oz chicken breast at 44g of protein- that’s over half the daily requirement of the average man or woman!
How can you tell if you’re consuming more protein than necessary without doing the math?
1. You’re eating healthy + still gaining weight– Excess calories from protein overload is stored as, you guessed it: body fat!
2. By analyzing your poo– Feces offer direct insight into our gastrointestional tract. For the most part, healthy poo is light and buoyant. Solid sinkers are a sure sign you’re ingesting too much protein.
3. You’re backed up– If there’s no poo to analyze. If you’re suffering from constipation, it may be wise to lay off the protein bars and reach for some fast acting fiber. Protein requires a considerable amount of water in order to break down. Insufficient water intake leads to dehydration and invariably, constipation.
4. If you’re consuming a protein portion larger than the palm of your hand (at every meal)– As a rough rule of thumb, the palm of your hand serves as a measurement tool in determining how much protein to consume per sitting. Any more is rather unnecessary and likely converting to fat.
5. Frothy or bubbly urine– yikes! Frothy or excessively bubbly urine may be an indication that your kidneys need some love and affection. Kidneys serve as a filtration system and occasionally that filter needs cleaning. Excessive protein can clog the filter and in sever cases, lead to infection.
And one more thing. If you suffer from a tapeworm (an insatiable appetite) occasionally swapping animal protein with plant based protein (beans, lentils, chia, spirulina, quinoa etc.) may be a wise decision. Plant based options are, for the most part, lower in protein count than most animal sources- allowing you to consume more in quantity with less of the residual effects.