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How Much Protein?
(Calorie Method)

This is how to calculate your protein requirements if you have a daily calorie limit. If you are at or near your ideal weight, you can calculate using the WEIGHT METHOD by clicking HERE.

Enter your calorie requirements in the field below and we'll calculate how many grams of protein you need daily, based on your lifestyle. A full explanation of each number is provided below the calculator.

How many calories should you eat?

Please click ALL that apply:

If you are trying to LOSE WEIGHT
   

If you engage in ENDURANCE TRAINING (cardio)
   

If you engage in STRENGTH TRAINING (weights)
   

Total Choices         



USDA Grams of Protein
Grams of Protein
Minimum
Maximum
According to the USDA this is how many grams of protein to eat daily.
Vegetarian numbers.

Grams of Protein based on YOUR choices.
Grams of Protein
Minimum
Maximum
Total grams of protein daily:
Total grams of protein daily vegetarian:

About the Numbers

ENDURANCE TRAINING (running, jogging, swimming, biking, etc.) can dramatically increase the required amounts. .55 to .64 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. So now that 180 pound person should take in 99 to 115 grams of protein every day.

STRENGTH TRAINING (moving weights) bumps it up even further. .73 to .78 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. In this category that 180 pound person would need 131 to 140 grams of protein each day.

ENDURANCE &TRENGTH TRAINING is the same as strength training. .73 to .78 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. In this category that 180 pound person would need 131 to 140 grams of protein each day.

If you're a VEGETARIAN it is suggested you increase your protein intake above suggested levels by another 10%. The increase is because plant proteins are considered lower quality and they don't have as many of the essential amino acids that animal proteins do. The 10% increase is to make up for those deficiencies. (There is one exception. Soy protein does contain all the essential amino acids.)

PREGNANT WOMEN generally need an extra 10 grams of protein per day above suggested levels.

WOMEN WHO ARE NURSING typically need 15 grams a day extra the first 6 months, dropping to 12 grams a day extra the second six months.

Supplement companies suggest much higher levels of protein consumption, from 1 to 2 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. Unfortunately, these higher levels are based on anecdotal evidence and not controlled clinical trials.

How much protein is too much?

The Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine suggest that if more than 35% of you total daily calories are protein, you're probably eating too much. Excess protein can't be stored in the body (like fat and carbs) so eating too much may put a strain on the kidneys and liver.