How Much Protein In Bodybuilding Diets?
For any fitness athlete and bodybuilding hopeful, diet is, undoubtedly, the most important factor in their success. What is not so clear, however, is exactly how much protein in the diet is considered optimal for the best results.
While it is true that bodybuilders need to keep their protein intake consistent, in order to build the largest amounts of muscle mass, which is so important to their sport, the exact amount which is to be consumed has been subjected to rigorous scrutiny, by magazines, athletes and governmental agencies. No matter what publications you read, or which "experts" you follow, there are a dozen recommended amounts, depending on the source.
High protein intakes, classified over 1 gram per pound of body weight, have shown benefits in muscle building. However, the drawback of a high-protein diet is that it does tax the kidneys, which work to eliminate the excess from the body. These have routinely been adhered to by professional bodybuilders, throughout the last few decades.
Lower protein intakes, classified as less that 1 gram of protein, have often been thought of as insufficient in bodybuilding diets, as the high protein standard has long been considered the "norm." Optimally, lower protein consumption is the best for both bodybuilding and general health, as long as it is done in accordance to specific guidelines.
While it can be detrimental to consume too little protein, ingesting approximately .5 to .75 grams of protein, per pound of body weight, is the new staple of bodybuilding and general health diets. This amount seems to be ideal for facilitating muscular growth and body maintenance. There have been several case studies in which the end results of muscle mass from lower protein consumption were comparable to those of higher protein diets. As an added benefit, the side effects of kidney damage were virtually non-existent.
While the controversy over how much protein is optimal for bodybuilding success is bound to continue for ages, one thing is certain to remain a truth. Protein will remain the most important factor in the diet of anyone looking to promote gains in muscle mass and healthy bodybuilding results.