This protein calculator estimates the daily protein intake that you should have according to your size and level of activity. Discover more on why we need to have proteins and on the recommended daily intake in the text below the form.
How does the protein calculator work?
This health tool determines how many proteins you need to have in order for your body to maintain its functions and you to have enough energy.
In order to integrate your conditions in the calculation you will need to provide some info regarding your weight, either in English or metric measurements, your gender and the level of activity you undergo daily.
In regard of the lifestyle component, you can choose from Sedentary, Moderately active, Active and Highly active.
The protein calculator can also take into account other special situations for instance in case of pregnancy or recovery after an injury. You can input any data you like and then make as many calculations you want with various types of situations so you can discover what suits you best.
Let’s take for instance the case of a man, weighing 220 lbs who has an active lifestyle. His protein intake is around 180 grams per day.
If he would start being less active then he would have to lower the consumption to 140 grams. Similar, if he becomes very active and does strenuous effort he will need to adapt the intake to 200 grams of protein per day.
What are proteins? Why do we need them?
Proteins are made of amino acids which are basically a chemical structure made of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen.
It is estimated there are about 50,000 different proteins in the human body. They have a major role in every cell and most of the fluids in our bodies.
Almost every process that occurs in the body is controlled by one or more of these structures.
The human body can manufacture most of the needed amino acids except nine of them that are called essential amino acids and need to be taken from food and nutriments.
Where do we get them from?
Protein sources can be divided in two categories according to the essential amino acids they provide:
A complete source, also called high quality proteins, provides all of the essential amino acids, examples: animal based foods: meat, poultry, fish, milk, eggs and cheese;
An incomplete source, also known as complementary proteins, provides only some of the essential amino acids, examples: rice, dry beans, corn, soy foods, lentils and other plant proteins.
Recommended daily intake
The answer to how much protein do you need depends on what category you belong to, on your size and which are your activity levels and goals about weight. In general, 10-35% of your calories should come from the protein intake.
The RDA (recommended daily allowance) what the value the protein calculator offers you varies with the different conditions.
For instance, the basic rule is of 0.8 grams per kilogram of lean bodyweight. This assumes that you are sedentary, uninterested in gaining muscle and free of health issues related to lean mass (in case of obesity the amount of protein needed should not be calculated in relation to bodyweight).
In case of a normally active life a person's protein intake should vary near 1.3 grams per kilogram of bodyweight.
If you are a highly active person or an athlete the protein intake should vary between 1.2 and 2.0 grams per kilogram. A recent study concluded that 1.8 grams per kilogram protein intake would maximize muscle protein synthesis. What you shouldn’t forget is that a healthy diet depends not only on proteins but also on carbohydrates and fats.
1) Protein in diet. (2009) United States National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
2) Genton L, Melzer K, Pichard C. (2010) Energy and macronutrient requirements for physical fitness in exercising subjects. Clinical Nutrition 29 (4): 413–423.29 Dec, 2014