Beginner Guide to Protein

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Beginner Guide to Protein

Proteins are the building blocks to a lot of objects in your body. Here is a small list of things made of protein in your body:

  • Neurotransmitters in your brain
  • Muscles (muscle burns more calories than fat)
  • Antibodies (Protect the body from viruses and bacteria)
  • Keratin is a protein that helps out with your hair, skin and nails
  • Hemoglobin (blood protein that carries oxygen)
  • Proteins make up a large portion of hormones in the body
  • Enzymes are made of proteins (catalyst for chemical reactions in the body)
  • Collagen and elastin are proteins that make up bones, tendons and ligaments

As we age, we need more protein to prevent muscle loss. If we workout or are very active, we need more protein to recover and repair.  

Here are some recommendations for protein intake for individuals: 

  • Sedentary lifestyle is 0.8 grams of protein per 1kg of body weight.
  • 40-50 years old are 1-1.2 grams of protein per 1kg of body weight.
  • People who regularly exercise are 1.1-1.5 grams of protein per 1kg body weight.
  • People who regularly lift weights are 1.2-1.7 grams of protein per 1kg body weight.

Protein also helps individuals with satiation (feeling full) and digests a bit slower. Because it digests slower, it helps regulate blood sugar and provides a higher thermogenic effect than carbohydrates.  This means it takes more energy (calories) to digest proteins.  It is recommended that individuals consume 15-30 grams of protein with each meal

Here are some foods that are high in protein and will help you increase your overall protein intake:

  • Meats
    • Lamb, Sirloins, Filets, Liver
  • Poultry
    • Chicken, Turkey, Eggs
  • Fish
    • Salmon, Cod, Halibut, Sardines, Tilapia
  • Beans
    • Black, Lima, Navy
  • Dairy
    • Low Fat Cottage Cheese, Low Fat Greek Yogurt, Kefir, Cheese
  • Nuts and Seeds (high in fat, in moderation)
    • Almonds, Walnuts, Sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds



There are more things to eat than this to increase your protein intake, but this is a nice start. 

~Oak Creek Fitness


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