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Until quite recently, the answer to this question has been based on years of empirical evidence from bodybuilders and strength athletes, with the standard recommendation being 2.2g/kg/day.
However, science has now provided a much clearer picture of how much protein we should be eating to maximise muscle gains and it’s a lot less than first thought.
Some new information
In a recent study, researchers conducted a systematic review of the best available research (randomised controlled trials) on protein dosages to maximise muscle growth.
What they found was that protein consumption beyond 1.62g/kg/day resulted in no further resistance training induced gains in lean muscle mass (Note – this figure is inclusive of total body weight, not just Lean Body Mass (LBM) or Fat Free Mass (FFM)).
What does this mean?
Put in simple terms and using the example of an average male trainee weighing 75kg, you will maximise your muscle gains with only 126 grams of protein per day (75kg multiplied by 1.62).
Similarly, using the example of a female weighing 60kg that works out at 97 grams of protein per day to maximise gains.
Compare these numbers to the previous recommendation of 2.2g/kg/day: 165 grams of protein for a 75kg male and 132g/kg/day for a 60kg female.
The take home message
Getting in enough protein is paramount for your gains, but there’s only so much protein you can use for muscle growth.
Eating more than you need is not the most efficient or economical way to build muscle.
That being said, this is not the final word on this hotly debated topic. Indeed, for those dieting or in hypo-caloric eating states, research indicates you actually benefit from consuming more protein than this.
To ensure you’re meeting your daily protein requirements, check out the extensive Bulk Nutrients protein range.
With over 30 different, great-tasting and best priced proteins, you’ll be sure to find a protein supplement to suit your needs and budget.
Aragon, A., Schoenfeld, B., Wildman, R., Kleiner, S., VanDusseldorp, T., Taylor, L., Earnest, C., Arciero, P., Wilborn, C., Kalman, D., Stout, J., Willoughby, D., Campbell, B., Arent, S., Bannock, L., Smith-Ryan, A. and Antonio, J., 2017. International society of sports nutrition position stand: diets and body composition. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, [online] 14(1). Available at:International society of sports nutrition position stand: diets and body composition. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.
Morton, R., Murphy, K., McKellar, S., Schoenfeld, B., Henselmans, M., Helms, E., Aragon, A., Devries, M., Banfield, L., Krieger, J. and Phillips, S., 2017. A systematic review, meta-analysis and meta-regression of the effect of protein supplementation on resistance training-induced gains in muscle mass and strength in healthy adults. British Journal of Sports Medicine, [online] 52(6), pp.376-384. Available at:A systematic review, meta-analysis and meta-regression of the effect of protein supplementation on resistance training-induced gains in muscle mass and strength in healthy adults. British Journal of Sports Medicine.