If you attend a gym we’re sure you’ve heard everyone talk about protein or may have noticed people sipping on shakes after they finish their work out. So why are people doing this, and is it something you should also be doing?
The NZ Nutrition guidelines state on average for a female you need 0.8g protein per kg of body weight for your daily protein intake. This means for a 70kg female you would be looking at 56g protein per day, for a 90kg male this would be 72g.
To give you an idea of what this looks like, a 1/2c dry serving of oats, with 1/2 cup non-dairy milk would be ~15g protein. To up the protein even further you could add a serving of peanut butter (1-2 Tbsp) or 1-2 Tbsp chia or hemp seeds, or nuts, which can add an additional 5-10g protein. That means you could be looking at a possible 20g protein just from one meal!
If you are eating a range of foods and a balanced diet (Plant Based Bag or Veggie Bag for dinner definitely takes care of some of this!) then you should be quite easily able to reach your daily protein requirements. If you are going to use a protein powder to supplement then you want to be looking for something that has no added sugar and is ideally 100% pea, brown rice or hemp protein to avoid any unnecessary added nasties.
If you are a morning exerciser then using a protein powder in a breakfast smoothie or a protein shake on top of your regular breakfast may be useful whereas if you are an evening exerciser, your dinner should cover your protein needs. Protein powder can be a great way to make your morning smoothie much more satiating and keep you fuelled for longer.
You don’t necessarily need to be consuming protein shakes every day to reach your protein requirements, as a healthy balanced vegetarian or plant based diet is sufficient to meet your daily requirements. However, protein powder is a handy thing to have particularly for your morning meals, and may help some of you reach your daily protein intake more easily.