Keep calm and Love Protein
It’s Monday so I’m bringing you some more info on our favorite topic other than CrossFit…NUTRITION.
Any athlete no matter their sport would agree that protein is crucial for muscle growth. It actually may just be a little more important than your realize.
Why is protein such a wonder macronutrient?
Lets break it down from the beginning. Protein in a MACROnutrient…meaning that our body needs large amounts of it daily. It is imperative not only to athletes for strength and mass building, but for every human with a desire for their body to function. Protein is essential to our immune system, ph balance, structure, movement, and transfer of nutrients in our body.
I’m going to lay out some boring stuff, but I need to give you some background on this…
When your body is exposed to the bad stuff such as bacteria or a virus your immune system sends out proteins called antibodies. These antibodies attack the bad stuff in an attempt to kill the suckers and stop the virus from kicking you down.
It’s not often that we think well I hope my pH says on track today, luckily protein blast that worry out of our brains. Protein helps to keep our pH balance in check. When the food we eat and the air we breathe is not ideal for our bodies, protein steps in as a buffer. When our bodies are not at a neutral pH it can lead to a lot of unwanted health problems and chronic disease.
Structure and Movement
There is protein in every single cell in your body – from your hair to your nails to your muscles and organs. These proteins are known as structural proteins: they literally provide the structure for your body. Without them you could not CrossFit, run, or even stand.
Proteins transport nutrients in our body. They keep our electrolytes in check by carrying sodium and potassium into and out of cells. Proteins carry vitamins from our organs to our cells. Hemoglobin is a specific protein in your red blood cells that carry’s oxygen from your lungs to your cells.
Now that I have protein ingrained in your brains, let’s chat about how much.
The MINIMUM amount of protein for athletes should be at least .55 grams/pound/day. Depending on your sport or training, the daily requirement can go as high as .9 to 1 grams/pound.
If you’re an avid athlete/crossfitter, with goals of muscle gain, increased performance, and fat loss I would shoot for .8-1 grams/pound per day. (Personally I take my clients body weight or goal weight and set that as there protein intake)
Let’s talk timing. Is there a right and wrong time to eat protein?
Best rule of thumb is to just get it in. EASY ENOUGH.
Many recent research studies now say to forget what has been drilled into your brain about pounding protein post workout. Your anabolic window may last up to 6 hours after a workout or it may not exist at all. Just try and distribute your protein throughout your day. That way your body can more effectively absorb what you’re putting in.
For those of you who haven’t been in the game so long, here is a breakdown of what type of protein to consider when you’re fueling your body.
I recommend trying to get your protein through nutritional food sources first and then if you’re having a hard time fitting in the rest you can look to high quality protein powder and other such supplements.
Seafood is an excellent source of protein because it’s usually low in fat. Fish such as salmon is a little higher in fat, but it is the heart-healthy kind: it has omega-3 fatty acids.
Stick to the white meat of poultry for excellent, lean protein. Dark meat is a little higher in fat. The skin is loaded with saturated fat, so remove skin before cooking.
Milk, Cheese, and Yogurt
Not only are dairy foods like milk, cheese, and yogurt excellent sources of protein, but they also contain valuable calcium, and many are fortified with vitamin D. Choose skim or low-fat dairy to keep bones and teeth strong and help prevent osteoporosis.
Eggs are one of the least expensive forms of protein. Stick with one egg and a few whites and you got high protein without the added sodium and cholesterol.
One-half cup of beans contains as much protein as an ounce of broiled steak. Plus, these nutritious nuggets are loaded with fiber to keep you feeling full for hours.
This great and versatile white meat is 31% leaner than it was 20 years ago.
Occasionally subbing soy protein instead of sources of higher-fat protein
Lean beef has only one more gram of saturated fat than a skinless chicken breast. Lean beef is also an excellent source of zinc, iron, and vitamin B12.
Don’t forget if you have questions just find me at the gym!
Now go get your protein on!