Thanks to the work of Trish Fine, our Live Healthy MD nutritionist, she has put together a quick reference about protein and where it comes from.
Protein Goal: 60-80 grams per day
¼ cup protein= ~10 grams protein
½ cup protein= ~20 grams protein
¾ cup protein= ~30 grams protein
1 cup protein= ~40 grams protein
0-2 weeks post op: 3 shakes TOTAL = 60+ g
2-6 weeks post op: 5-6 meals of ¼ cup = 50-60 g
1 protein shake= 20+ g
TOTAL = 70-80+g
6 weeks-6 months: 3-4 meals of ¼ – ½ cup= 30-80 g
1 protein shake= 20+ g
TOTAL = 50-100+g
6 months-1 year: 3 meal of ½ cup+ = 60+ g
1 protein shake (If needed only!) = 20+g
TOTAL= 80 + g
After 1 year: 3 meals of ½- ¾ cup= TOTAL= 60-90g
No protein shake needed
What is Protein?
Proteins are part of every cell, tissue, and organ in our bodies. These body proteins are constantly being broken down and replaced. The protein in the foods we eat is digested into amino acids that are later used to replace these proteins in our bodies.
What are the types of protein?
Proteins are made up of amino acids. Think of amino acids as the building blocks. There are 20 different amino acids that join together to make all types of protein. Some of these amino acids can’t be made by our bodies, so these are known as essential amino acids. It’s essential that our diet provide these.
In the diet, protein sources are labeled according to how many of the essential amino acids they provide:
•A complete protein source is one that provides all of the essential amino acids. You may also hear these sources called high quality proteins. Animal-based foods; for example, meat, poultry, fish, milk, eggs, and cheese are considered complete protein sources.
•An incomplete protein source is one that is low in one or more of the essential amino acids. Complementary proteins are two or more incomplete protein sources that together provide adequate amounts of all the essential amino acids.
Why do we need Protein every day?
We have a tremendous capacity to store fat in fat cells and a very limited capacity to store glucose (as glycogen in our muscles and liver) but unfortunately, we have no way to store amino acids (protein)because we must either use them to synthesize proteins, burn them for energy, convert them to glucose, or (very rarely, and if all else fails) excrete them.
Therefore, humans have a daily requirement for each one of the amino acids necessary to life, in the quantities required by whatever proteins the trillions of cells in our bodies are making (minus our ability to synthesize some of them).
The best choice for a protein shake would be one with a complete protein. The most common type available is whey protein. Whey protein is a milk protein that comes in many different forms (isolate, concentrate, blend). The difference in the forms is in the purity, quality and absorption of the protein. These differences affect the price and taste of the products but are generally insignificant in affecting the protein status in someone drinking the shake.
What do we want you to eat?
High quality protein foods, a.k.a. dense foods. Beef, chicken, pork, fish, turkey, eggs, cheese, game. If it runs, walks, swims, crawls, flies, slithers, is a mother or has a mother you can eat it.
Live Healthy MD