The constant flow of fitness inspiration through the intake of red meat, protein shakes and supplements makes it seem easy to remain healthy. However, there may be a few hidden surprises you want to know about.
For year now we have been led to believe that a high-protein diet is good, mostly as a result of the fitness and supplement industries. Despite the fact that this has done wonders for the businesses themselves, it may not be doing quite as much good for us.
A recent study that was published by the University of Eastern Finland tracked 2400 middle aged men for 22 years and found that those who endured a high protein diet were 49% more likely to develop heart failure. This research backs up previous studies that have shown that individuals who engage in high intake of red meat are more likely to be obese or develop cardiovascular disease.
The question of why we have been told to eat more protein? The first idea of a “protein gap” came from Nevin Scrimshaw in the 1960s who was a professor at MIT. He claimed that the proteins found in plants were not enough because it was devoid of crucial amino acids.
This was proven to be incorrect in 1972 following a study that showed that you can get all the necessary amino acids from plants. However, the need for more protein has recently been reinforced by the ‘health food’ industry and other fitness and diet businesses.
Much of the cultural trend behind increased protein intake has come about as a result of the gym trend in putting on muscle mass. These so called fitness junkies will say that you need additional protein in order to put on muscle. This comes despite studies that show that a normal diet will ensure you have plenty of protein to grow muscle.
As humans, we actually need a relatively small amount of protein when compared to other mammals. Humans need just 10% of their diet to consist of protein which is just 50 grams per person. The average intake is around 75-100 grams per person at the moment.
Much of the concern around excessive protein intake is that of a balanced diet. When people consume more protein it is often at the consequence of another food source.
David Smith was born and raised in Calgary Alberta and loves to share his passion for health and fitness with others. Apart from running his own podcast, which uploads weekly shows that covers current health trends, he spends his time canoeing and backpacking. David recently spent a summer working at the CFIA as a health supplement reviewer. In regards to academics, David studied kinesiology at Guelph University.