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Old 11-11-2013, 01:58 PM   #1
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How much protein

Do YOU eat? Just want to do a survey of sorts. I think that because I am eating my upper level of calories, my protein might be too high. I seem to be staying at the same weight and can't get past it. I eat between 80-100 grams of protein. I'm thinking of trying a semi fat fast where I still eat around 1800 calories but lower my protein to around 25-40 grams. My carbs are always under 20 no matter what. What are your thoughts?
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Old 11-11-2013, 02:05 PM   #2
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I aim for about 120g of protein per day. That's based on the ~154 lbs of LBM I have.

Unless you have a very slight frame and almost no muscle tone, I think 25-40g of protein won't be enough. You must eat enough daily to nourish and maintain the muscle mass you already have, or you will soon lose it. I've heard that within a couple of days of inadequate protein, the body starts to degrade its muscle tissue. It's so much harder to build it back up than to keep it in the first place.
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Old 11-11-2013, 03:18 PM   #3
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I eat between 45 - 70 ish (should be 50 min) thats based on a calc i read of taking ideal weight and eating 1 to 1.5g per kg. how did you guys work out your protein requirements?

I have no idea what my LBM is, I tried the measuring criteria that the navy apparently (according to the interweb) but it seemed too low to me at the time. I'll try it again tomorrow but it put me at like 35% which i dont believe, i'm pretty sure it must be more, i'm not exactly toned and my exercise is terrible as in it doesnt exist. Perhaps i measured wrong.


Anyhoo guidance would be appreciated!
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Old 11-11-2013, 03:44 PM   #4
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I get a dunk test (hydrostatic body analysis) every four months. It tells me my body composition, how well I'm doing in maintaining my LBM, and so on. I use it as a gauge to make sure I'm on the right track in terms of keeping LBM and losing only fat.

I'm going for my next one this Wednesday, as a matter of fact.

Last edited by Ntombi; 11-11-2013 at 03:51 PM..
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:11 PM   #5
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I have looked for a place in my town that does the test you are talking about, Ntombi, and I can't seem to find one. I know we have got to have one, I just can't find it. I'm not thinking about doing the 40 grams long term, just for a few days, kind of like a fat fast but with more calories. I am just being impatient with my weight right now. I know better, but if I could just get under 200, I think I would quit obsessing over the scale. I have been at this for a long time now, and I know that there is no quick fix. I just keep thinking that because my calories are so high that my protein might be too low to lose at this point. According to the formula, I can eat up to 100 grams of protein per day. My tracker says that I can eat 2000 calories and still lose. Nothing is happening though. I did get down to 72 grams today and haven't felt deprived. I ate about 1850 calories.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:13 PM   #6
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LBM is lean body mass.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:18 PM   #7
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At one point I used to be worried about losing LBM if not eating higher protein.But then I came across some studies that were done with people fasting(no food),HFLC,and other diets and in the short term ,do not lose LBM.there is a threshold of time before we lose LBM.The people who lost most LBM were on lowfat diets.
Also I just don't know which is more dangerous,being obese and developing complications from that ,or losing a little LBM while you are in the weight loss phase.Also it is my understanding that weight lifting helps build LBM faster.
I calculate my reqts using the Optimal Diet formula and it is much lower than the online keto calculator and is helping me lose.I couldn't lose weight on higher protein.
The last time I checked, my LBM had increased slightly.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:56 PM   #8
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Well, I don't see the point in doing something that would most likely cause me to lose LBM, vs. something that would most likely help me to keep it. I don't have any doubt that losing only fat (or almost only fat) is much better than losing fat and muscle.

I'm in this for the long haul, and for my health, not to lose weight as fast as possible. I want to end up at a lean healthy weight, not as a "skinny fat" person. Google it, it's a thing, and the health risks of a thin-looking person with too-high BF% are just as bad as someone who looks as overweight as they are.
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:44 PM   #9
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Old 11-12-2013, 12:57 AM   #10
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Lowcarbella, i just double checked and the optimal diet is how i calculated my protein too, but my numbers to tend to vary but i try for a min of 50g protein. Yeah i've read where excess protein has stalled people, i guess it depends on your weight and goals. I was reading a post on another forum where a woman basically stalled out then started a slow gain because her protein was too high.

Ntombi, sorry i'm going to be really nosy here but out of interest, between your dunk tests have you lost lbm? If so what percentage of the total weight lost was muscle?

Its really interesting as i heard that the dunk test was the most accurate way to measure body fat so you probably have a better idea than most abot how lchf is affecting your body. Again sorry for being nosy! I also understand that lchf is supposed yo be muscle sparing according to studies found on the web, but you are like a proper test case!!

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Old 11-12-2013, 01:41 AM   #11
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According to the keto calculator that I use, I need 57 grams minimum and 110 grams maximum. I try and keep my protein around 85- 100 grams a day.
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Old 11-12-2013, 06:31 AM   #12
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I'm happy to answer, ask away! Between February and July, I lost right at half a pound of LBM, and about 30 lbs of fat. That amount of LBM loss is pretty much perfect, and what I was hoping for. I go again tomorrow, so I'll have updated numbers then.

Plus, because of some health issues, I have been restricted from exercise for over 18 months now, so I have to maintain my muscle mass through diet alone.

Yes, the hydrostatic tests and DEXA scans are the most accurate by far. I have a Tanita scale, which uses BIA (bio-electrical impedance analysis), but it's not as accurate and varies by several factors, so I don't use that number. Last time I checked it, it gave me a result that was off from my dunk test by fifteen percentage points! That's when I put it away. If I used that off data to calculate my protein needs and goal weight, I wouldn't be getting near enough protein, and my goal weight would be too low.

Anyway, one more point to lowcarbella's post: yes, you can of course add LBM by lifting weights, but not if you're not eating enough protein. Any gym rat will tell you that muscles are built in the kitchen.
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Old 11-12-2013, 11:58 AM   #13
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Ntombi, oh my DAYS!!!! Thats amazing!!!! Thats through diet alone??? How did you work out your protein requirement? Go you!! I was steeling myself against like 25% muscle loss!! I am seriously impressed, you've made me think about working on upping my protein a bit.

Seriously WOW
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Old 11-13-2013, 01:04 AM   #14
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I used the formula from The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance, which recommends a protein range of .6 - 1 X LBM. That gave me a range of 92-154g. Smack in the middle is 120g, which became my loose daily goal. The second result from the dunk test validated it. I'm not anal about it, I don't weigh or track, but I keep an eye on my protein and make sure I'm not consistently getting too little. Today I ate weirdly (on plan, but not much all day) and was hungry, so my choice of a late night snack was scrambled eggs.

Oh, and I mis-remembered. I checked my July paperwork, and I lost just under half a pound of LBM and just over 23 lbs of fat from February to July, not the 30 I said upthread.

I'll post here tomorrow afternoon after my test. I've had a difficult few months, just had another surgery two weeks ago, and have had a ton of inflammation from infection and medicinal side effects. I know I haven't lost much weight overall, so I'm really curious about the breakdown. Fingers crossed!
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Old 11-13-2013, 06:01 AM   #15
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I there are many variables when it comes to protein needs. I have decided that I will eat at the low end of the reccommendations because I am a small boned, short and post meno. My limit is 55g per day and that is including all foods. I sometimes eat a bit more but usually it is a bit less. I have been at this level for more than a year and a half with no 'wasting' what so ever.

It is my understanding that eating a ketogenic woe is also anabolic and therefore not nearly as likely to lose muscle. I also maintain various strength maintenance and building habits. I have not witnessed any decline but rather, increase in strength and muscle definition (for an old gal).

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Anabolic processes tend toward "building up" organs and tissues. These processes produce growth and differentiation of cells and increase in body size, a process that involves synthesis of complex molecules. Examples of anabolic processes include the growth and mineralization of bone and increases in muscle mass. Endocrinologists have traditionally classified hormones as anabolic or catabolic, depending on which part of metabolism they stimulate. The classic anabolic hormones are the anabolic steroids, which stimulate protein synthesis and muscle growth, and insulin. The balance between anabolism and catabolism is also regulated by circadian rhythms, with processes such as glucose metabolism fluctuating to match an animal's normal periods of activity throughout the day.[3]
When it comes to the basic understanding of issues like this I think it is important to remember that all of the knowledge was pretty much derived from a population that were glucose burneres and that as we all know, can make a huge difference. Researchers like Phinney and Volek are now trying to tease out what some of those differences are but the science is still very caught up in bodies that are fueled differently.
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Old 11-13-2013, 06:37 AM   #16
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Ntombi, thats still brilliant, and dont take this the wrong way but from your (excellent) profile pic you can tell its mainly fat you've lost, you are so much smaller!! I'm sorry you havent been well, but great for you sticking with the plan through it, first sign of my period even and i'm off hunting for chocolate, good for you! Also if you are retaining that much muscle mass you are going to be BUFF when you hit your goal weight! Jealous.....moi?

I think doing a low calorie diet has lost me LBM. I know those online measuring bf calculators arent accurate but i tried one a few months ago when i was a stone heavier and just yesterday and its increased my bf (42% arrrghh) i think i'm going to start tracking measurements a lot closer now, my size hasnt changed that much so thats what doing a high carb low cal diet does for you! Dont get me wrong i lost two stone doing that but the loss of LBW is not what i wanted so i am starting to worry about protein intake.

Clackley, again amazing weight loss, do you measure your BF%? I've done some reading a some seem to be suggesting that its impossible to increase muscle without increasing protein, but they tend to be body builder types who also promote moderate carb and think you cant even exercise without carb loading? Honestly i'm a random home video exerciser so i'm not totally clued up on this stuff. Its great that you guys are so well informed

Tbh i'm feeling pretty stumped!

we dont seem to have dexa around here so measurements are the only way i can tell. I think I'm going to go middle of the line here, realistically with what i'm eating at the moment i dont think i can get anymore protein in, i'm really full!! I even considered buying quest bars but they are so damn expensive where i live. The range is between 30g - 75g sofar this week so i'll count it over weeks instead of daily and hopefully that will give me a much more accurate picture.

The info is really useful so thank you guys for posting what you know!
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:54 AM   #17
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Well, I got my results, and they're okay, but not as good as I'd hoped.

Since July, I've lost ten pounds, which breaks down to a pound and a half of LBM and 8.5 pounds of fat.

I kind of had the feeling it wouldn't be as good, but I admit I am disappointed. I think the guy was kind of irritated at me for not being happy, because he kept saying over and over how this was such a good result, and he generally sees LBM losses in the 25% range, but I lost less muscle and more fat last time. I'll get over it, because I know intellectually that I'm still on the right track, still progressing, still losing inches and sizes, and, most importantly, still improving my health.
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Old 11-13-2013, 09:40 AM   #18
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Ntombi, i know it must be disappointing compared to previous results but its still fantastic, its so much less loss than the average person can expect. Have you totalled how many lbs of fat you have lost?

I know what you mean, if the numbers on the scale don't go down i get antsy despite the fact that i KNOW its doing me some good and the loss will happen!
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Old 11-13-2013, 10:38 AM   #19
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See, and the scale fluctuations don't bother me at all, probably because I don't trust them to tell the real story, whereas I do trust the dunk test. It's not a big deal, and I'm definitely smaller and leaner than I was in July. I can't remember exactly, but I'm either two or three sizes smaller.

Okay, I did the first test six weeks after I restarted, so I had already lost over twenty pounds. Since mid-February, I've lost 32.6 pounds of fat and 2.1 pounds of LBM.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:48 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ntombi View Post
See, and the scale fluctuations don't bother me at all, probably because I don't trust them to tell the real story, whereas I do trust the dunk test. It's not a big deal, and I'm definitely smaller and leaner than I was in July. I can't remember exactly, but I'm either two or three sizes smaller.

Okay, I did the first test six weeks after I restarted, so I had already lost over twenty pounds. Since mid-February, I've lost 32.6 pounds of fat and 2.1 pounds of LBM.
That is so great!!! I need to get more scientific. All I know is I have lost from 172 to 162 since October 3. I am going to work on finding out my lean body mass. I don't do formal exercise, but I have an active job plus I do at least 20 flights of stairs per day.
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Old 11-13-2013, 01:01 PM   #21
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Do YOU eat? Just want to do a survey of sorts. I think that because I am eating my upper level of calories, my protein might be too high. I seem to be staying at the same weight and can't get past it. I eat between 80-100 grams of protein. I'm thinking of trying a semi fat fast where I still eat around 1800 calories but lower my protein to around 25-40 grams. My carbs are always under 20 no matter what. What are your thoughts?
I keep my protein at less than 50 grams a day. That is about 6 to 8 oz a day of some sort of meat or fish. I usually keep my carbs under 10 grams a day.
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Old 11-13-2013, 02:42 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ntombi View Post
See, and the scale fluctuations don't bother me at all, probably because I don't trust them to tell the real story, whereas I do trust the dunk test. It's not a big deal, and I'm definitely smaller and leaner than I was in July. I can't remember exactly, but I'm either two or three sizes smaller.

Okay, I did the first test six weeks after I restarted, so I had already lost over twenty pounds. Since mid-February, I've lost 32.6 pounds of fat and 2.1 pounds of LBM.
Seee thats fantastic!! 93% of the weight you lost was fat! I better start doing dome exercise!

Cfine, hows it going? what did you decide to do?
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Old 11-13-2013, 05:12 PM   #23
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Late to the party, but I aim for 70 g protein per day or so. Some days it a bit less, but there are definitely days it get up to 90 or so. Over 100 g in a day would be pretty rare for me.
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Old 11-13-2013, 07:25 PM   #24
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I have been trying to keep my protein under 80 grams, trying to stay more like around 70. I have lost 2lbs this week.
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:53 PM   #25
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I'm late to the party, too. I just redid my numbers based on the online keto calculator and I'm shooting for 77 g protein/day, with a range of 68g - 113g.
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Old 11-14-2013, 12:34 AM   #26
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I forgot to say that when I tested with blood ketone strips, while I usually got in my average of about 120g, I ate as much as 180g of protein one day, and was still in the NK "zone," so I know I have a fairly large margin of error before I'm eating so much that it affects my ketosis. Getting hard numbers really helps me understand what works for my body.
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Old 11-14-2013, 01:34 AM   #27
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I have been trying to keep my protein under 80 grams, trying to stay more like around 70. I have lost 2lbs this week.
Whoo hoo!!! Glad its working!
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Old 11-14-2013, 01:37 AM   #28
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I forgot to say that when I tested with blood ketone strips, while I usually got in my average of about 120g, I ate as much as 180g of protein one day, and was still in the NK "zone," so I know I have a fairly large margin of error before I'm eating so much that it affects my ketosis. Getting hard numbers really helps me understand what works for my body.
I think it probably depends on the person right? I did a tape measure body fat test at hime and i think i will use that as a guideline so between 58- 97, will count it over a week and see what happens.
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Old 11-14-2013, 02:43 AM   #29
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Oh, yes, it definitely depends on the person.
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Old 11-14-2013, 05:36 AM   #30
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Ntombi, thats still brilliant, and dont take this the wrong way but from your (excellent) profile pic you can tell its mainly fat you've lost, you are so much smaller!! I'm sorry you havent been well, but great for you sticking with the plan through it, first sign of my period even and i'm off hunting for chocolate, good for you! Also if you are retaining that much muscle mass you are going to be BUFF when you hit your goal weight! Jealous.....moi?

I think doing a low calorie diet has lost me LBM. I know those online measuring bf calculators arent accurate but i tried one a few months ago when i was a stone heavier and just yesterday and its increased my bf (42% arrrghh) i think i'm going to start tracking measurements a lot closer now, my size hasnt changed that much so thats what doing a high carb low cal diet does for you! Dont get me wrong i lost two stone doing that but the loss of LBW is not what i wanted so i am starting to worry about protein intake.

Clackley, again amazing weight loss, do you measure your BF%? I've done some reading a some seem to be suggesting that its impossible to increase muscle without increasing protein, but they tend to be body builder types who also promote moderate carb and think you cant even exercise without carb loading? Honestly i'm a random home video exerciser so i'm not totally clued up on this stuff. Its great that you guys are so well informed

Tbh i'm feeling pretty stumped!

we dont seem to have dexa around here so measurements are the only way i can tell. I think I'm going to go middle of the line here, realistically with what i'm eating at the moment i dont think i can get anymore protein in, i'm really full!! I even considered buying quest bars but they are so damn expensive where i live. The range is between 30g - 75g sofar this week so i'll count it over weeks instead of daily and hopefully that will give me a much more accurate picture.

The info is really useful so thank you guys for posting what you know!
I do not measure BF by any 'device'. I measure muscle by how I look and feel. Since I restarted low carb (almost exclusively ketogenic) 4+ yrs. ago, I have seen my muscle tone improve and same for strength and balance. I challenge myself daily. That is what really counts for me.
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