Most Common Protein Myths
Whether you’ve been taking protein supplements for a while or you’re new to the protein game, there are always obscure protein myths cropping up on the gym floor. Maximuscle have set the facts straight with our top 5 protein myths debunked.
MYTH #1 - PROTEIN IS ONLY FOUND IN MEAT
Although animal sources of protein such as eggs, dairy and meat are excellent sources, protein as a key nutrient can also be found in grains, legumes, nuts and even vegetables. Having said that, meat tends to offer a higher proportion of protein per 100 g compared to plant based sources, e.g. 100 g of chicken gives roughly 25 g protein, whereas 100 g of lentils gives about 9 g protein.
MYTH #2 – MORE PROTEIN = MORE MUSCLE
Some individuals believe the more protein you eat the more muscle you build. As ideal as that sounds, it takes a bit more than devouring chicken breasts throughout the day to build muscle. Appropriate strength training in combination with the delivery of amino acids from the diet is key for muscle growth and maintenance.
MYTH #3 – THE MORE PROTEIN THE BETTER
There seems to be a ceiling effect when it comes to the amount of protein that’s consumed and how much of that protein the body can use at one particular time. Studies suggest that a protein dose of around 20 g per meal or snack is optimal1. If you’re looking to bolster your daily protein intake, redistribute protein throughout the day by having a protein rich snack mid morning such as a handful of nuts or a protein bar.
MYTH #4 – ALL PROTEIN IS THE SAME
When it comes to protein, not all sources are the same. Animal proteins are known as ‘complete’ sources of protein, meaning they provide all of the essential amino acids (building blocks of protein) that we can’t make in our bodies and have to get from our food. Plant based sources of protein on the other hand are known as ‘incomplete’ sources of protein, meaning they don’t contain all of the essential amino acids required, or only contain a small proportion of them. If you’re a veggie or vegan, aim to mix and match your protein sources such as grains with beans, or nuts and legumes, to acquire the full array of essential amino acids.
MYTH #5 – PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTS ADD UNECESSARY CALORIES
To some extent the train of thought behind this myth is understandable. The more food you eat the more calories you will take on board, and an accumulation of excess calories over and above what you expend during every day activity and exercise will lead to increased body weight. For those that exercise, the amount of calories you expend will increase, as will the need for protein to support the maintenance of muscle. At Maximuscle we firmly believe that part of the winning formula is consuming the right amount of protein for you to restore muscle without adding excess calories. You should aim to consume between 1 – 1.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, depending on your training volume, type and intensity. For example an 80 kg individual will need between 80 – 144 g protein, split equally throughout the day.