Calories, nutrients in food, physical activity and more can all be tracked using new online tool

Keeping Track of Food, Calories & Fitness Just Got Easier!

CALORIES, NUTRIENTS IN FOOD, PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MORE CAN ALL BE TRACKED USING NEW ONLINE TOOL

This blog was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated in July 2013, but you can read the original post here.

Have you been eating more fruits and vegetables? If so you can credit the USDA and its private sector partners for getting out the message to “Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.” That campaign began in September 2011 following the release of the ChooseMyPlate icon, designed to help reshape the nations eating habits.

Now it’s time to take it up a notch.

From January through April 2012 the key message is “Enjoy your food, but eat less.” I love the message because it reinforces the fact that eating is meant to be enjoyed – not something we hear too often from a government program!

The best part about this new campaign is that it comes with a great line up of online tools to help you plan and keep track of your food, fitness and health. It’s called SuperTracker and includes:

Food-A-Pedia – Includes over 8000 foods you can look up to see their nutrient content and make comparisons to other foods

Food Tracker – Lets you enter the foods you eat each day to track your intake and compare it to your nutrition goals

Physical Activity Tracker – Lets you enter your daily activities and tracks your progress

My Weight Manager – Get weight management guidance by entering of your weight and tracking your progress

My Top 5 Goals – Select your personal health goals then sign in for tips and support from a virtual coach

My Reports – Get reports to see progress towards goals and trends over time

All you have to do is login and create a personal profile to take advantage of all these valuable tools and resources. I can’t think of a better way to learn how to “enjoy your food, but eat less.”

Learn the habits of those who are successful at managing their weight

Weight Loss Success: Lessons Learned from Successful Losers

Posted on

This post was written as a guest blog for SplendaLiving.com. You can read the original post here.

I have been compensated for my time by McNeil Nutritionals, LLC, the maker of SPLENDA® Sweetener Products. All statements and opinions are my own. I have pledged to Blog With Integrity, asserting that the trust of my readers and the blogging community is vitally important to me.

Anyone who has ever tried to lose weight knows the work isn’t over once the pounds are off. Keeping them off can be an even bigger challenge. That’s because so many people still think all they have to do to lose weight is go “on a diet,” and once they lose weight they can get “off the diet.” Sadly, it’s often just a matter of time before their weight is right back where they started, or even higher.

If this sounds familiar, there’s a group I want to tell you about who have beat that system. They are members of The National Weight Control Registry and they have all lost weight and kept it off – and for most of them, for more than five years!

Whenever I read about this amazing group of successful “weight losers,” one of the first things that always stands out is how few of them credit their success to having gone “on a diet.” Instead, what most of them have done is adopt a new lifestyle. And as we all know, diets have many stops and starts, but lifestyles just keep plugging along.

How to Successfully Lose Weight & Keep it Off

This lifestyle approach is reflected in most common traits used by the Registry members to maintain their weight loss. For example, 78% report they eat breakfast every day of the week and the majority of them follow the same meal pattern on weekends and holidays as they do any other day of the year. Eating meals on a consistent schedule is just an everyday occurrence. They also monitor their weight on a regular basis and deal with any weight gain quickly so it doesn’t get out of control. Stepping on a scale once a day is all it takes. Another routine they’ve built into their daily lives is getting some physical activity, which they apparently have the time to do because they watch less than 10 hours of television per week.

When it comes to what they eat, keeping tabs on the caloric and fat content of their diets is a winning strategy for Registry members. Of course this involves reading food labels, being aware of portion sizes and not eating out too often, but that’s just a way of life for them.

A recent study on the use of low-calorie sweeteners (such as SPLENDA® Brand Sweetener) and fat-modified foods by weight loss maintainers (WLM) found these are helpful tools. When compared to normal weight (NW) subjects who reported consuming a low calorie, low fat diet, WLM used more low fat strategies, such as reduced fat dairy products, spreads and sauces, than NW, and they drank more sugar-free beverages and water than those who had never been overweight.

This may come as a surprise to those who have heard about the studies reporting an association between low-calorie sweeteners and increased weight, but it wasn’t a surprise to these researchers. They said their results are consistent with those found in several other randomized clinical trials on obese individuals that found greater weight loss among users of low-calorie sweeteners than non-users. In fact, the authors concluded that the use of sugar-free beverages may actually assist the weight loss maintainers in adhering to their reduced calorie diets when faced with the many triggers to overeat that are all around us.

If you’re trying to lose weight and keep it off, take a look at the successful people in the National Weight Control Registry for inspiration. What you’ll see is it takes more than a diet, and that the use of low-calorie sweeteners, like SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, can be a helpful part of your new healthy lifestyle.

Robyn Flipse, MS, MA, RDN, “The Everyday RD,” is an author and nutrition consultant who has headed the nutrition services department in a large teaching hospital and maintained a private practice where she provided diet therapy to individuals and families. With more than 30 years of experience, Robyn is motivated by the opportunity to help people make the best eating decisions for their everyday diet. She believes that choosing what to eat should not be a daily battle and aims to separate the facts from the fiction so you can enjoy eating well.

References:

  • Wyatt HR, et. al (5). Long-term weight loss and breakfast in subjects in the National Weight Control Registry. Obes Res.2002;10(2):78-82
  • Phelan S, et. al (3). Use of artificial sweeteners and fat-modified foods in weight loss maintainers and always normal weight individuals. Int J Obes. 2009;33(10):1183-1190
  • Wing R, Phelan S. Long-term weight loss maintenance. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005;82(1):2225-2255
Calories, nutrients in food, physical activity and more can all be tracked using new online tool

Keeping Track of Food, Calories & Fitness Just Got Easier!

This post was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read the original blog here.

CALORIES, NUTRIENTS IN FOOD, PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MORE CAN ALL BE TRACKED USING NEW ONLINE TOOL

Have you been eating more fruits and vegetables? If so you can credit the USDA and its private sector partners for getting out the message to “Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.” That campaign began in September 2011 following the release of the ChooseMyPlate icon, designed to help reshape the nations eating habits.

Now it’s time to take it up a notch.

From January through April 2012 the key message is “Enjoy your food, but eat less.” I love the message because it reinforces the fact that eating is meant to be enjoyed – not something we hear too often from a government program!

The best part about this new campaign is that it comes with a great line up of online tools to help you plan and keep track of your food, fitness and health. It’s called SuperTracker and includes:

Food-A-Pedia – Includes over 8000 foods you can look up to see their nutrient content and make comparisons to other foods

Food Tracker – Lets you enter the foods you eat each day to track your intake and compare it to your nutrition goals

Physical Activity Tracker – Lets you enter your daily activities and tracks your progress

My Weight Manager – Get weight management guidance by entering of your weight and tracking your progress

My Top 5 Goals – Select your personal health goals then sign in for tips and support from a virtual coach

My Reports – Get reports to see progress towards goals and trends over time

All you have to do is login and create a personal profile to take advantage of all these valuable tools and resources. I can’t think of a better way to learn how to “enjoy your food, but eat less.”

See my related post: Weight Control, Healthy Diet and Fitness Are All a Numbers Game

Smiling older woman hugging her black dog

Pets and Health: Benefits of Pet Ownership

This post was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, so the post has been reproduced here.

RESEARCH SHOWS PETS PROVIDE HEALTH BENEFITS TO PET AND OWNER

If you’ve tried meditation but had trouble getting into the zone, I feel your distraction. I can’t sit still, block all my random thoughts and focus on my breathing either. But put a purring cat in my lap while I stroke its fur and I’m in nirvana.

This is all the evidence I need that there is a connection between pets and health.

Don’t like cats? Allergic to fur? Sit in front of a fish tank and see if you don’t get mesmerized.

People and Pets, The Perfect Partnership

Human beings have cohabitated with animals for over 12,000 years. Our earliest motivation for domesticating wolves was to make them part of our hunting parties to help track other animals, but they ended up doing much more for us. Ancestors of today’s dogs were soon valued as a source of warmth, companionship and protection.

Pet ownership has been big business ever since.

Now the American Heart Association says pets, especially dogs, may be associated with a reduced risk of heart disease.

The Scientific Statement published in the journal Circulation made it very clear that buying or adopting a dog would not undo the damage caused by smoking, eating poorly and not exercising. It might even add to your stress if you can’t take care of the animal properly. But if you make needed lifestyle changes to lower your risk for heart disease and have a pet, you could benefit more than someone who lives without fur balls under the bed.

A majority of Americans have apparently figured that out on their own. Even though pets require a lot of time, money and effort, they are found in 62% of U.S. households according to the 2011-2012 National Pet Owners Survey. Dogs are in more households than cats, but cats outnumber dogs since people tend to have more than one.

Pet and Owner, Healthy Together

While the research reported by the American Heart Association looked primarily at decreased risk for heart disease, there are other benefits of pet ownership. Here’s my informal list that is not necessarily supported by scientific studies, but has the endorsement of pets and owners alike.

Structure Your Day – If you are responsible for feeding a pet, providing water and cleaning up after it, you tend to get up on schedule, get home from work on time and go to bed at the same time each day.

Stay Physically Active – Even if you don’t have to walk a dog, you may have to scoop the poop from the yard, birdcage, or hamster habitat; vacuum fur, sweep kitty litter, and pick up toys from all corners of the house.

Source of Companionship – No matter the species, your pet is someone to “talk” to so you never feel alone.

Offer Emotional Support – Being needed by our pets increases our sense of self-worth and their loyalty improves our self-esteem.

Increase Socialization – People who don’t talk to strangers do talk to a stranger’s pet, whether in the veterinarian’s waiting room, pet supply store or walking through the park with a ferret on your shoulder.

Enhance Therapy – Dogs not only serve as eyes for the blind, they assist those with Alzheimer’s and autism and can be trained to detect a drop in blood sugar, some types of cancer and oncoming seizures.

Provide a Play Mate – If you’ve ever purchased a toy for a pet, you know it takes two to have fun! Teasing a cat with a feather on a string, tossing a Frisbee to the dog or trying to get the bird to ring bells in a certain order is entertainment for both of you.

Nutrition facts label and good nutrition websites need activity information

New Coke Ad Goes Beyond the Nutrition Facts Label

This post was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read my original blog here.

NUTRITION FACTS LABEL AND GOOD NUTRITION WEBSITES NEED ACTIVITY INFORMATION

There is plenty of good nutrition information in the world today, but we aren’t necessarily any healthier as a result, or any slimmer. We’ve got Nutrition Facts labels that tell us what’s in our food and nutrition websites that explain everything that happens to it once we eat it.

Maybe we need to start looking elsewhere for guidance?

A new Coke ad called Be OK spends 33 seconds equating the 140 calories in a can of Coke with fun and physical activity. It depicts someone walking her dog, getting into a groove while dancing, and doing a victory jig after throwing a strike in a bowling alley. With each fun activity we’re told how long we’d have to do it to burn off the calories in a can of Coke.

Research shows that’s a message people respond to.

What’s the Problem?
Calories are a difficult concept for Americans to grasp. Results from numerous consumer surveys done to test our knowledge of the connection between calories and weight provide all the evidence we need.

These studies have consistently shown the majority of us don’t know how many calories we are currently eating every day, how many calories we should be eating for our height, weight, activity level and health status, or how many calories we should be eating to lose weight — something the majority of us need to do.

Equally important, we have no clue how many calories we burn off each day, or more properly stated, how much energy we use to fuel the many functions our bodies perform 24/7. That is a key piece of the “energy balance” equation.

Who’s to Blame?

Caloric information has been on food labels since 1990. Books, brochures, and websites also provide detailed lists of the caloric value for everything we eat. And since 2008, chain restaurants in several big cities have been posting the caloric content for their menu items right up there along with the price.

To make it even easier for people to see the caloric content of their purchases, some food and beverage companies began putting the calories per serving on the front of their labels in 2011, not just on the Nutrition Facts panel found on the back or side of the box. But still, we have grown heavier.

What’s Been Missing?

Some researchers at the University of North Carolina (UNC) may have found a missing link. They designed a study to test what type of information might encourage diners to order differently from fast food menus. It compared four menu options: 1) just calorie information, 2) calories plus minutes to walk to burn the calories, 3) calories plus miles to walk to burn the calories, and 4) no calorie information.

The participants were 802 middle-aged women who were randomly assigned to one of the four groups. All were asked what they would order for themselves from a menu that featured fast food burger meals, sandwiches, salads, side orders, desserts and drinks. The only difference on the menus was the calorie and walking information.

Those who ordered from the menus with the calories and the number of miles needed to walk off those calories showed the biggest difference in their ordering preferences compared to those who had no information on their menus. Their orders contained 194 fewer calories, while the group that had calories and minutes of walking ordered 104 fewer calories, and those who had just calories ordered 93 fewer that the group with no information.

When asked which type of information they would prefer on menus, 82% of the participants said they preferred menus that showed physical activity, as minutes or miles walked, over menus that just had calories or no nutritional information at all. In their conclusions, published in the journal Appetite, the researchers state that it may be easier to imagine oneself walking a certain distance than trying to figure out what percentage of our daily caloric intake a menu item is worth.

It looks to me like The Coca-Cola Company has put the ball in our court with their new ad. What’s your next move?

Get motivated to improve your physical fitness while watching Olympics

Make Physical Fitness Your Goal for 2012 Olympics

This post was written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read the original post here.

GET MOTIVATED TO IMPROVE YOUR PHYSICAL FITNESS WHILE WATCHING OLYMPICS

How strong is your personal commitment to physical fitness? The start of the 2012 Olympic Games this week provides a great opportunity to decide if you are doing all that you can to stay in shape, whatever your age and abilities.

Olympic athletes train long and hard to be the best of the best. The rest of us just need to become our personal best. And all that takes is being consistent. Doing just about anything on a regular basis that puts your body in motion and uses some muscles groups can make you more physically fit.

Move More Often

Running a marathon is the ultimate test of stamina, but most people struggle to find 30 minutes a day to take a walk. So what can we do? Researchers at the Healthy Lifestyles Research Center at Arizona State University did a study to measure the benefits of training for shorter intervals.

What they found is that walking briskly for 10 minutes three times a day is more effective in controlling blood pressure than taking one 30 minute walk. Who doesn’t have time to get up and take a 10 minute walk around the block before work, after lunch and again in the evening? These findings add to the growing body of evidence that short, cumulative exercise sessions are beneficial. And they’re definitely more manageable.

Increase Your Repetitions

The resistance most people have to resistance exercise is that it’s just too hard to lift those heavy weights. But a new study from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario provides an appealing alternative.

Instead of lifting the heaviest weight possible to get stronger muscles, researchers found you can lift a lighter weight more often and still make muscles grow. The key is doing enough repetitions to tire the muscle while maintaining good form. You may not become The Incredible Hulk, but it’s good to know you can improve your strength and definition without lifting anything bigger than your head.

Stay Flexible

Most athletes are celebrated for their strength or speed, but flexibility is an equally important part of the fitness the triad, and has the most lasting benefits. Being flexible improves posture and balance, and that helps prevent falls – a serious concern as we age.

Whether you do tai chi, yoga or your own top-to-bottom stretches each day, maintaining your flexibility will reap benefits in every other aspect of your life. From putting on your own socks in the morning to getting out of a chair at the end of the night, being able to bend, reach, twist, and turn without pain or stiffness is like winning a gold medal!

What event would you want to compete in at the summer games if you had the chance?

9 Ways to Stay Active in Hot Weather

This post was written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read the original post here.

USE THESE 9 TIPS TO STAY ACTIVE IN HOT WEATHER AND AVOID THE MIDDAY SUN

It’s important to stay active in hot weather, but a change in your workout may be needed to avoid the heat. Cooler conditions can be found early or late in the day, in parks and pools, and by staying indoors. Use these tips to find a way to remain active until the temperature drops.

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Stretch at Sunrise Step outside at dawn to stretch with the rising sun at the start of another new day.

Me-Seniors Photos by Michael Williamson NEG#201675 5/30/08:

Workout With Wii Plug in the video game console for a challenging workout in the air conditioned comfort of your own home.

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Jump Through Hoops Twirl your hips in a hula hoop to keep your body in motion and a smile on your face.

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Race the Clock Time yourself using the clock tower in the mall as you race past the food court and shoe stores for a brisk walk out of the sun.

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Kick Up a Storm Submerge yourself in a pool, lake, or ocean and use kick board to propel yourself across the surface.

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Walk in the Woods Find a shady foot path in the park or hiking trail under a canopy of trees to block the midday sun.

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Keep It Afloat Develop your paddle power to explore the inland waterways in a canoe, kayak, raft or rowboat.

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Pedal Around Town Use the bike lanes at dusk when the street lights are on and commuter traffic has slowed to a hush.

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Stroll Under the Stars Wait until dark to take a walk in the cool night air and gaze up at the stars.

8 Ways to Lose Weight This Spring

This post was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read the blog here.

The cold and dark winter months make it easy to gain unwanted weight. We’re less likely to be active outdoors and find ourselves tempted by all the leftovers from those food-filled winter holidays when stuck indoors. Use these 8 ways to lose weight with the start of spring so you can be back in shape by summer.

Plant a Garden

Planting your own vegetables and herbs in a small garden plot or individual containers helps you shed your winter weight in two ways. First you’ll get the exercise of tilling the soil and pulling the weeds, then you’ll reap the benefits of your harvest – nutritious, low calorie plants you can enjoy all summer long.See related story: Health Benefits of Starting a Garden

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Clean the Cupboards

Losing the weight you’ve gained over the winter months is easier when your cupboards are free of the “high calorie clutter” still on the shelves. Be sure to remove anything that remains from your secret stash of Halloween candy, Christmas cookies and Valentine’s chocolates to begin your spring cleaning. See related story: Kitchen Makeover Means a Healthier Diet in the New Year

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Buy More Berries

Spring is the start of berry season, and with it the chance to load up on these delicious little fruits that have so many benefits in very few calories. Their high fiber content helps keep you satisfied longer while their phytonutrients lower the risk for cancer, heart disease and stroke.

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Use Paper Plates

Switching to a 9 inch paper plate for dinner is a great way to reduce the portion sizes you eat. Try it for a month to retrain your eye to recognize more appropriate serving sizes. You can also use an 8 ounce paper cup and 12 ounces bowl to replace the bigger cups and bowls you normally use. See related story: Serving Size, Portion Size, and Body Size Are All Connected

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Start a Diary

Keeping a record of everything you eat and drink, and how much, is a tried and true method to control overeating. It makes you pay attention to each bite you take when you know you have to write it in your diary. See related story: Keeping Track of Food, Calories & Fitness Just Got Easier!

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Specialize in Salads

If all you think of when you hear the word salad is a boring toss of iceberg lettuce and tasteless tomatoes, think again. There are endless combinations of colorful and crunchy vegetables that can be combined with lean protein sources and topped with flavorful dressings to make satisfying entrée salads that are anything but boring. See related story: Celebrate National Salad Month With Easy, Healthy, Delicious, Salads

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Practice Good Posture

A much overlooked way to burn more calories is to stand instead of sit. Every minute you spend standing uses more energy than sitting, so take advantage of this practical way to lose excess weight. By adjusting your posture when you stand you can also improve your muscle tone and balance. See related story: Sitting Too Much Raises the Risk of Dying Sooner

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Sleep Like a Baby

Research has shown that people who do not get enough sleep consume more calories than they need and have slower metabolisms. There are no short cuts to a good night’s sleep. It’s essential to good health and maintaining a healthy weight. See related story: Tired All the Time? 11 reasons Why (Besides Lack of Sleep)

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Sitting less can reduce the risk for many diseases and dying prematurely.

Sitting Too Much Raises the Risk for Dying Sooner

This post was originally written during my 2 1/2 year tenure as a blogger for Health Goes Strong. The site was deactivated on July 1, 2013, but you can read the original blog here.

STUDY SHOWS THE MORE HOURS SPENT SITTING THE GREATER THE CHANCE OF DYING

If you sit more than you sleep, you may have Sitting Disease. That’s the term used to describe a sedentary lifestyle. And even if you exercise for an hour a day – which very few people do -you’re not off the hook. Sedentary is defined as a lack of whole body muscle movement for extended periods of time. So if you spend most of your day in a chair or a bed after that daily workout, you’re sedentary!

Sitting, or long periods of inactivity, have been shown to raise your risk of developing obesity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The increased risk for disease associated with sitting is not the same thing as the recommendation to exercise more. Sitting for many hours a day is the problem. Exercise or other forms of physical activity are also important to good health, but for different reasons.

Even your life expectancy is impacted by sitting according to a study done by the American Cancer Society in 2010. Researchers looked at the amount of time spent sitting and being active in 123,216 individuals. They found women who sat the most and were the least physically active had a 94% higher likelihood of dying compared to women who sat less and moved more. For men the increased likelihood of dying was 48% higher.

The extended hours spent sitting have accumulated as jobs moved from field to office and walking was replaced by riding. Modern conveniences in our homes eliminate the need to chop wood, haul water and scrub clothes, so we have more time to sit and watch television. The very presence of so many “screens” in our lives – whether TV, computer or handheld – and the endless programs, movies, games and connections we can see on them keep us sitting even longer.

The problem is our bodies weren’t designed for all this inactivity. Throughout human history survival required that we remain active and alert. The only time our ancestors weren’t in motion was when they were sleeping.

The obesity epidemic has been blamed on too many calories and not enough exercise, but sitting is another contributor to the problem. Once you sit down the rate at which you burn calories drops to about 1 calorie per minute, regardless of how hard you are thinking. Standing increases the rate at which we burn calories by 10% while walking increases it by 150%!

Sitting has been described by some as the new smoking it’s so damaging to our health. It‘s time to stand up and fight back against the Sitting Disease!

To put this information to use, all you need to do is stand up right now while reading the rest of this blog. Then build regular time-outs for standing into your day by doing things standing that you once did sitting. You can stand:

  • Every time the phone rings and remain standing for all calls
  • During all commercials when watching TV
  • In line inside the bank instead of sitting in the car in the drive-through
  • When reading at your desk for 10 minutes out of every hour
  • On subways, in waiting rooms, at the boarding gate in the airport
  • To change the channel on the TV or simply “lose” the remote

Check Just Stand! for more tips and information

See related post on Exercise Can be Fun!

Protein is important to health, knowing your number matters.

Protein in the Diet – How Much is Enough?

The amount of protein you need changes over time

Protein is one of those nutrients that wears a halo of goodness but is shrouded in confusion. People know they need protein in their diets and that it’s good for them, but don’t know how much they need or if they’re getting enough. I can help.

How Much Protein Do We Need?

The amount of protein we need each day is based on our age and weight and if we have any specific building or repair conditions that demand more protein, such as pregnancy, recovery from a serious illness or extreme physical activity. This means our protein requirement is not a fixed number of grams once we reach adulthood, as most other nutrients are, but a value that changes over our lifetime.

What Are the Recommendations for Protein?

The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science is charged with establishing the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) is for all essential nutrients. The DRIs are calculated to provide a sufficient amount of each nutrient to meet the requirements of 98% of all healthy Americans. For healthy adults over the age of 19 the DRI for protein is 56 grams a day.

The Percent Daily Values (DV) we see on the Nutrition Facts panels of food labels are based on 50 grams of protein per day. This represents 10% of the calories in a 2000 calorie a day diet coming from protein. The key point here is that the Daily Values are not nutrient recommendations. Daily Values are a tool for consumers to use when comparing foods on the shelf to see what has more or less of each nutrient. They are all based on a 2000 calorie diet as the common reference point. Obviously, we don’t all need 2000 calories a day, and may need more or less protein as well.

The sample menus on the USDA ChooseMyPlate food plans are based on providing between 17% – 21% of the total calories as protein. On those 2000 calorie diets, that translates to a total of 85 -105 grams of protein a day.

What Amount of Protein is Right for You?

To get a more personal calculation of your protein requirement you’ll need a calculator. It involves multiplying your weight in pounds by .36 grams for the lowest amount of protein you should get each day and .8 for the highest amount if you’re not in one of those special needs categories mentioned above. (If using weight in kilograms, multiply by the factors .8 grams and 1.8 grams.) If you weigh 120 pounds, that’s a range of 54 – 96 grams a day. For someone weighing in at 175 pounds, the range would be 63 – 140 grams per day.

Strength and endurance athletes are advised to get from 0.5 – 0.8 grams of protein per pound (1.2 – 1.7 grams/kg) for best performance according to a joint Position Statement on Nutrition and Athletic Performance of the American Dietetic Association, Dietitians of Canada and the American College of Sports Medicine. That works out to 60 – 96 grams for the 120 pound person and 88 – 140 grams for the 175 pound person mentioned above.

Look for my next post on how to be sure you’re getting enough protein in your daily diet and how to distribute over your day.