Protein Busters: Building Muscle Mass

Protein Busters: Building Muscle Mass

Author Katie Mazzia MS RD CDE is a nutritionist at Vail Valley Medical Center.

MYTH: You need large amounts of protein to build muscle mass.

TRUTH: Any excess protein beyond what the body needs is burned for energy or stored as body fat.

The amount of protein required by a healthy individual is based on the type and frequency of exercise. As a general guide select the type of activity below that best describes you and calculate your protein requirements. Choose a mix of proteins from real food and reserve nutrition bars and powders for convenience or that quick fix right after a hard workout.

TYPE OF ACTIVITY*PROTEIN REQUIRED PER EACH POUND OF BODY WEIGHT
Sedentary.4-.5 gm/day
Endurance Sports.55-.7 gm/day
Weight Training.6-.9 gm/day

*The protein requirements vary because this information is based on separate studies from different researchers.

Example: 150 lb. per person endurance activities = 83 gm-105 gm (.55-.7 gm) protein per day.

FOOD SOURCES OF PROTEINSERVING SIZEPROTEIN (gm)
Quinoa1 cup22
Fish/shellfish poultry lean red meat pork bison wild game3 oz.21
Tofu regular1 cup (1/2 block)20
Greek yogurt6-8 oz.15-20
Kidney lentil black edamame beans1 cup13-16
Eggs16
Low fat milk or yogurt8 oz.10
Cheese1 oz.7
Soy milk1 cup6
Nuts shelled or 2T nut butter1/4 cup7
Brown rice or pasta cooked1 cup5
Vegetables cooked1 cup5
Whole wheat bread1 slice3-5
Fruits1 serving/piece1