The Importance of Protein and Exercise in Your Lifestyle

The Importance of Protein and Exercise in Your Lifestyle
Photo by Sam Owoyemi on Unsplash

Written by Dr. Millie Lytle

If you have not thought of your protein consumption when you plan to exercise, here’s some great advice from Mille Lytle, ND. She explains how you can strengthen and build your muscles along with managing your protein intake.

When you exercise your body tears muscle cells. Protein repairs those cells and also rebuilds them. Protein in your diet will cause the muscle cells to become even bigger and more numerous to provide that definition you may seek. Consuming some protein, with a small amount of carbohydrate, within 20-90 minutes after exercise will help you build lean body mass.

As summer approaches, you may be one of many people conscious of your body weight; wanting less body mass from fat and more from muscle is attractive and healthy after all. Building lean body mass not only looks better but improves your metabolism so you burn more calories while at rest. A strong body improves stability, bone strength and endurance. Strength training is the use of resistance exercises such as weights, weight machines, pilates, yoga and calisthenics (push-ups, sit-ups and squats) to build lean body mass and burn fat. It is recommended a minimum of 2 times per week. 

Recommendations for daily protein intake range from 10-35% of daily caloric intake depending on your level of activity. The average sedentary woman should consume 46 grams per day and 56 grams for men. Endurance athletes may require 50% more protein while body builders may require twice as much protein as people who don’t exercise. Adequate protein is crucial but too much animal protein, as too much protein may increase insulin-like growth factors setting you up for chronic illness such as cancer. The average American man is over-consuming meat by two to three times.

Protein can be consumed from vegetarian sources, animal sources and dietary powders:

1) in order to meet dietary requirements

2) if you have higher demand and

3) if you are trying to gain muscle mass post workout.

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