Protein Made Simple

How much protein?
The rule of thumb is at least 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. For example, a 100 pound person would take at least 100 grams of protein. This is a unisex rule. It doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman. It is still 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. You are going to use your current weight, not your goal weight! It’s that simple. Don’t worry. I will give you an easy way to measure your protein out in a minute.

If you are trying to add muscle and/or lose fat, you need more protein. Let me explain. One gram of protein per pound of body weight is the bare minimum. I suggest that most people start off with this amount for the first month or two and then increase it from there. If, however, you are trying to put on muscle or burn fat, you’ll need to up it to 1.25 – 1.5 grams. Once you are doing this for a while, you’ll begin to “know” your body. You’ll know how much you need and can adjust up or down to meet your goals.

Okay I can hear you now. I don’t know how nor do I want to go around measuring my protein every time I eat. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be meticulously exact. It is very easy, in fact I will show you an old bodybuilding trick and give you a chart to make it simple. 20 grams of protein is a serving. A 20 gram serving of meat is approximately the size of a deck of cards. Usually one scoop of protein powder will be approximately 20 grams of protein, but read the label. You can get that information from the protein container. In fact I use a good bit of protein powder to supplement my protein intake and I am a big fan of Labrada Nutrition.  I have known Lee for years and he has a deep commitment to supplying the best products on the market.  In addition I make sure I always have Chobani Greek Yogurt in the house which is very high in protein & probiotics.  We will get into some tips on how to make eating interesting in a future blog.

So let’s go back to our examples. A 100 pound person would need at least 5 portions of protein during the day. 100 pounds = 100 grams of protein, divided by 20 grams of protein = 5 portions. Now just divide these serving among the meals you are eating. This 100 lb person would have one serving of protein with every meal if she was eating 5 meals a day.

Below is a simple chart that will help you. You don’t need to go crazy counting your protein intake, just use this as a guide and do the best you can. Making this easy for you will allow you to focus more time on the passions that God has put in your life.

Body Weight # of Servings for 1 gram/lb # of Servings for 1.25 gram/lb # of Servings for 1.5 gram/lb
100 5 6 8
110 6 7 8
120 6 8 9
130 7 8 10
140 7 9 11
150 8 9 11
160 8 10 12
170 9 11 13
180 9 11 14
190 10 12 14
200 10 13 15
210 11 13 16
220 11 14 17
230 12 14 17
240 12 15 18
250 13 16 19
260 13 16 20
270 14 17 20
280 14 18 21
290 15 18 22
300 15 19 23
310 16 19 23
320 16 20 24
330 17 21 25
340 17 21 26
350 18 22 26

The above portions are based on body-weight. For many years, I told people to throw their scales away because body weight is not an accurate portrayal of your fitness level. Since muscle is heavier than fat, you could be getting in better shape, but be heavier. Now, I tell them to get out their scales but to use it as a tool. A scale is necessary to help figure out your protein requirements and to help in the measuring of progress.

I hope this clears up the confusion on how much protein you need and has given you a simply way to figure it out how much protein you are eating.  Let me know if this was useful!

4 Responses for Protein Made Simple

  1. January 25, 2011 8:20 pm

    Damn – just actually calculated my daily protein intake, seems I’m only getting 90g … I need to find another 110g! Break out the protein bars!

  2. January 25, 2011 8:25 pm

    Thats funny Darrin. Don’t feel bad everyone has the same problem if they aren’t paying attention. The protein chart makes it easy. Between the ProV 60 and some bars you are there. I personally use the ProV 60 three times a day. I love all the flavors but the strawberry is incredible. 🙂 Happy eating!!

  3. Darrin Searancke


    February 4, 2011 10:55 am

    Hey John. I have been eating “clean” and really up’ed my Protein intake. Weighed in today at the gym – I’ve gained just over 2lbs in the past 7-10 days! Yes!

  4. February 4, 2011 11:09 am

    Terrific Darrin!!! Keep up the good work and keep me in the loop!!