Protein powders are one of the most consumed supplements.  Everywhere you turn at the gym, all you see are BlenderBottle®  filled with a multitude of different protein shakes.

Through the use of advertising, we have been taught that to lose weight, and build muscle we need to consume more protein.  We are shown a fitness model claiming that they reached their physic through protein powder.

Is it really true? Is protein powder the secret to achieving our health goals?

Health Effects of Too Much Protein

The daily recommended amount of protein is 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight.  On average that is 56 grams a day from a man and 46 grams a day for a female.

The body can only process 5 to 9 grams of protein and hour, anything beyond that is stored as fat or secreted out through the kidneys.

Consistent overconsumption of protein has serious health consequences such as kidney disease, osteoporosis, and kidney stones.  Increase protein consumption also leads to increase nitrogen consumption.  The kidneys are then forced to work harder to expel excess nitrogen out through the urine.  Animal-based protein powder can cause kidney stones, by increasing calcium build up in the kidney, leading to calcification and the painful process of expelling the kidney stone.

The human body lives in balance.  Consuming high levels of one food type throws the balance off and other areas of the body are forced to compensate.

High Levels of Toxins

In a report published by Consumer Reports, protein powders were found to contain high levels of arsenic, cadmium, and lead.

Cadmium, if consumed in large quantities can cause damage to the kidneys.  As stated above, the kidneys are already stressed with the increased protein consumption, adding elevated toxins to the mix leads to a greater chance of kidney disease.

“When these toxic heavy metals are combined in a product that is marketed for daily use, that raises serious public health concerns, especially for pregnant women, children, and young adults.” – Consumer Reports

Lack of Federal Regulation

Protein powders (and other supplements) often go unregulated.

“Federal law does not require dietary supplements to be proven safe to FDA’s satisfaction before they are marketed.” – U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Lack of regulation can lead to incorrect or misleading serving sizes, traces of pesticides, and unchecked levels of metal contaminate.

Alternative Ways To Get Protein

While most supplements and protein powders are safe, consult with a medical professional before beginning a new supplement.  Oftentimes, there are other things that you can do to reach your health goals.

Protein is an important part of the diet.  Consuming protein does have to be limited to just meat.  Plant based protein is just as beneficial and can prevent getting into a food rut.  Beans, nuts, vegetable and whole wheat grains are a great source of non-meat based protein.

Contact at 425-903-3141, to schedule an appointment today to discuss your health goals.