How Much Protein You Need to Build Muscle
Protein is one of the three main macronutrients in a healthy diet, along with carbohydrates and fats. Protein is found in all of your cells and makes up about 20% of your body. According to a 2019 article in Nutrients, getting enough protein throughout one’s life is therefore essential for good health, growth and development, tissue repair, muscle building, and immune function. However, despite the fact that protein is necessary for muscle growth and in your diet, not everyone consumes enough of it.
“How much do you need to build muscle?” is a hotly debated protein-related issue. Even though there is no one-size-fits-all approach to health and fitness, following dietary guidelines will help you get enough of this macronutrient that helps build muscle. According to a 2018 article published in Nutrients, the international recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight, regardless of age or level of activity. However, you’ll need more to reach your fitness goals if you want to maximize muscle growth and recover faster from workouts.
Continue reading to find out how protein compares to carbohydrates and why it is so important for muscle growth. We’ll also talk about how much protein you should eat, which kinds of protein are best for building muscle, and whether or not timing your protein intake is important.
Here’s a quick refresher on the significance of protein for muscle growth. Your body breaks down protein into amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein, when you eat it. There are 20 amino acids in protein. The remaining nine are “essential,” meaning that they must be obtained through diet, while eleven of them are produced by your body. Amino acids are necessary for the growth and repair of new muscle fibers, according to a 2020 article in Nutrients. However, for optimal muscle protein synthesis (MPS) and body function, getting enough of each amino acid is essential.