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Health and fitness with Alexa Towersey

Health and fitness with Alexa Towersey We chat to September cover model, Alexa Towersey about all things fitness, health, career and self-love. Check out the exclusive cover story interview below!

ON CAREERI’ve been in the health and fitness industry for over 15 years. I’ve played pretty much every sport known to man including American football, boxing, soccer, skiing and horse-riding. I completed a Bachelor of Science in biology and psychology and went on to do a post-graduate diploma in sports management and kinesiology, and then I interned with an All Blacks-endorsed Pilates studio.

ON EXPERIENCES When I was 27 I moved to Hong Kong, where I was the senior strength and conditioning coach at a mixed martial arts (MMA) gym. I decided to get into half-Ironman events and I took two years to qualify for the world champs.

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Health and fitness with Alexa Towersey

Posted in Bodybuilding, Health Issues, Nutrition, Weight lossComments Off on Health and fitness with Alexa Towersey

<div id="DPG" webReader="185.509833585"><div class="side-bar" webReader="-14.5273972603"><div class="c11"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-vital-stats-b.jpg"/></div><h3 class="article-title c12">Vital Stats</h3><p><strong>TRAIN MAGAZINE</strong><br />The Official Print Partner of Bodybuilding.com</p><p><strong>Website:</strong> <a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">https://train.magcs.com/</a><br /><strong>Facebook:</strong> <a href="https://www.facebook.com/TRAINmagazine" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmagazine</a><br /><strong>Twitter:</strong> <a href="https://twitter.com/TRAINmag" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">TRAINmag</a></p></div><p>You've probably been told over and over again by every respectable nutritionist and doctor out there that a supplement stack cannot overcome a poor diet.</p><p>Let's reverse engineer that statement, because it's also telling you that your exercise performance can get absolutely everything it needs from the whole foods section of the supermarket.</p><p>Consider that taking creatine for a few weeks can increase your muscle power by 15 percent, or having a caffeine pill before a workout can boost your endurance by a staggering 17 percent. Well, there aren't any foods which can boast those benefits, so supplements clearly have their place.</p><p>A weak diet isn't necessarily thanks to a distaste for vegetables, nor is it always a conscious decision. Think of it this way: If 12 p.m. saddles you with non-negotiable ravenousness and you only have the $5 you dug out from under the sofa cushions, you can still grab a meal deal at a drive-thru. But, go to an organic market and ask a teller what you can get for your five bucks, and you'll be lucky if you get offered a liter of expired goat's milk and a coupon to McDonald's.</p><p>You see, the ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn't always fit your schedule. So if vegetables and lean proteins have become an afterthought, then the question that needs asking is: Can a bad diet be made moderately respectable by good supplementing?</p><p>These supplement strategies can help you improve your health, even if you absolutely insist on eating like a four-year-old. And if you're smart enough to already eat healthy, but treat yourself to the odd cheat meal then these tactics will help you activate damage control mode when the times comes. Either way you win, and will be healthier and fitter.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-1.jpg" width="560" height="493" border="0"/><p>"The ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn't always fit your schedule."</p><h3 class="article-title">IS YOUR MULTIVITAMIN A LIE?</h3><p>Sportsman or not, multivitamins are at home in just about every household. They claim to fill in any gaps in your nutrition, not boost sports performance, so their main selling point is actually longevity and an improved ability to fend off disease.</p><p>Is the science at odds with the marketing claims? Well, researchers who published their results in the "American Journal of Epidemiology" undertook a ground-breaking study that followed almost 200,000 multivitamin-users over an 11-year period.</p><p>The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn't.</p><p>In short: multivitamins did nothing. Zero benefit. So if they're doing nothing and you chuck them down your throat like sweets to counterbalance your KFC obsession, then Colonel Sander's offerings are going to have a pervasive effect inside your body.</p><p>There is also a worrying psychological aspect; it's thought that people who take multivitamins feel they have more junk food and exercise lay-day credits than people who don't. Sadly, the Grim Reaper doesn't factor in these supposed get-out clauses when he's hard at the grind.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-2.jpg" width="560" height="412" border="0"/><p>"The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn't."</p><h3 class="article-title">THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS</h3><p>Supplement manufacturers by law have to state that their product is not a replacement for real food, but if we can send dudes to the moon on powdered Sunday roasts then isn't it logical that humans have progressed enough to make the "pill-diet" possible?</p><p>"Astronauts' diets have been carefully formulated by top scientists to make sure no micro or macronutrient is overlooked," says Dr Jerry Liu, a nutritionist and food chemist.</p><p>"On a global scale, this is actually done very successfully in animal models, with cows eating a mix of whole foods and artificially added nutrients. And you go on to enjoy their steaks as part of your balanced diet."</p><p>Hell, even your pet pooch has his diet created in a lab and he's living longer than ever.</p><p>"In theory, you can live on supplements, but the DIY approach will no doubt leave you with serious holes in your dietary requirements because you won't have the tech to monitor how much of each nutrient your body is absorbing," adds Dr Liu.</p><p>Even though product labels are monitored to make sure they're truthful, you can't be 100 percent sure you're getting exactly what they claim to contain.</p><p>"Often the processing destroys many of the unstable micronutrients and digestive enzymes your body needs to absorb [certain] nutrients," Dr Liu continues.</p><img class="float-right c13" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-3.jpg" width="344" height="211" border="0"/><p>"Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they're not quite a match just yet."</p><p>Real organic food guarantees health, but you take a risk by trying to supplement yourself healthy—unless your bedroom is built by NASA.</p><p>"Obviously, if you're eating badly then taking something like a green supplement is going to be significantly better for you than not taking it," explains Dr Liu. "Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they're not quite a match just yet."</p><p>So take them to put something healthy back into your body, but remember that they're not a sure enough bet just yet to risk your neck on.</p><h3 class="article-title">HELPING HANDS</h3><p>Dutifully sticking to a nutrition strategy doesn't always dish up world-class results. Occasionally getting a little lax with your diet is not just an extravagance, but a necessity. Cheat meals can actually help you stick to your diet, found research at the University of Illinois. The break from restricting calories helps keep you on track.</p><p>"Looking forward to a cheat meal at the end of the week keeps people disciplined and actually has the power to speed up metabolism and burn more calories," says Moodie Dennaoui, nutritionist to world champion boxers such as Billy Dib.</p><p>But if you want to gorge on cheat meals that would make The Rock envious then you're presented with an opportunity to out-supplement a bad meal. "There is a lot of scientific evidence behind the effectiveness of carbs blockers on the market and to a lesser extent fat blockers have also shown some promise," says Dr Liu.</p><p>"Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body's ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal."</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-4.jpg" width="560" height="xxx" border="0"/><p>Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body's ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.</p><p>Just as you mentally prepare for your big burger blowout, you should also plan to reduce its ill effects by using these supplements. But what about long-term periods of junk-food binges, such as a holiday, where you regularly visit restaurants and buffets?</p><p>"Taking a fiber supplement can be beneficial because processed foods lack this nutrient and it helps to push the food through your digestive system," says Dr Liu. "This means the toxins won't be in your system as long as they would be otherwise."</p><p>It may not be a great long-term strategy, but it will certainly help you come back from a holiday with a tan instead of belly.</p><h3 class="article-title">IT'S ALL IN THE NAME</h3><img class="float-right c15" src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/can-you-out-supplement-a-bad-diet-5.jpg" width="226" height="251" border="0"/><p>If you wash down pizzas with an extra-strength green super-drink then you definitely cushion the blow. Yes, today's supplements can almost do the job of a king-sized salad, but it still can't quite match it.</p><p>"Fresh foods are alive and the nutrients are as concentrated as you'll ever eat," says Dr Liu. "You may get 1,000 micrograms of spinach from a teaspoon of a green supplement, but that's never going to outshine the benefits of fresh food."</p><p>Mother Nature isn't a girl who can be bested just yet, and supplements remain supplements—not substitutes. So be a man and eat like a man, not a child.</p><a href="https://train.magcs.com/IT2C51/subscribe" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/train-magazine-banner-1-24-2014.jpg" width="560" height="200" border="0" class="c16"/></a><br class="c17"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c20" webReader="5.82857142857"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-types-of-muscle-building-supplements-for-overall-growth.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/whats-sup-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="8.01428571429"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/3-types-of-muscle-building-supplements-for-overall-growth.html">3 Types Of Muscle-Building Supplements For Overall Growth</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
In its inaugural edition, TRAIN magazine, the newest health and fitness bible, reveals the truth about how they work and what you should be taking when.</p></div></div><div class="c20" webReader="4.55924170616"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/vindicating-vitamins-protecting-your-health-is-not-a-waste.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/vindicating-vitamins-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="5.61137440758"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/vindicating-vitamins-protecting-your-health-is-not-a-waste.html">Vindicating Vitamins: Protecting Your Health Is Never A 'Waste'</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
Don't fall for sensational headlines and slanted science about vitamin/mineral supplementation. Nothing short of your long-term health is at stake.</p></div></div><div class="c20" webReader="4.16228070175"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stone-age-sustenance-maximize-your-modern-diet.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2013/maximize-your-modern-diet-smallbox.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c19" webReader="5.12280701754"><h4 class="c18"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/stone-age-sustenance-maximize-your-modern-diet.html">Stone Age Sustenance: Fill The Gaps In Your Modern Diet With Smart Supplementation</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
The cavemen were lucky in one way: Today's produce is half the quality it once was. Fill the gaps in your modern diet with smart supplementation!</p></div></div></div>

Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

You’ve probably been told over and over again by every respectable nutritionist and doctor out there that a supplement stack cannot overcome a poor diet.

Let’s reverse engineer that statement, because it’s also telling you that your exercise performance can get absolutely everything it needs from the whole foods section of the supermarket.

Consider that taking creatine for a few weeks can increase your muscle power by 15 percent, or having a caffeine pill before a workout can boost your endurance by a staggering 17 percent. Well, there aren’t any foods which can boast those benefits, so supplements clearly have their place.

A weak diet isn’t necessarily thanks to a distaste for vegetables, nor is it always a conscious decision. Think of it this way: If 12 p.m. saddles you with non-negotiable ravenousness and you only have the $5 you dug out from under the sofa cushions, you can still grab a meal deal at a drive-thru. But, go to an organic market and ask a teller what you can get for your five bucks, and you’ll be lucky if you get offered a liter of expired goat’s milk and a coupon to McDonald’s.

You see, the ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn’t always fit your schedule. So if vegetables and lean proteins have become an afterthought, then the question that needs asking is: Can a bad diet be made moderately respectable by good supplementing?

These supplement strategies can help you improve your health, even if you absolutely insist on eating like a four-year-old. And if you’re smart enough to already eat healthy, but treat yourself to the odd cheat meal then these tactics will help you activate damage control mode when the times comes. Either way you win, and will be healthier and fitter.

“The ever-hastening pace and cost of life means healthy eating doesn’t always fit your schedule.”

IS YOUR MULTIVITAMIN A LIE?

Sportsman or not, multivitamins are at home in just about every household. They claim to fill in any gaps in your nutrition, not boost sports performance, so their main selling point is actually longevity and an improved ability to fend off disease.

Is the science at odds with the marketing claims? Well, researchers who published their results in the “American Journal of Epidemiology” undertook a ground-breaking study that followed almost 200,000 multivitamin-users over an 11-year period.

The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn’t.

In short: multivitamins did nothing. Zero benefit. So if they’re doing nothing and you chuck them down your throat like sweets to counterbalance your KFC obsession, then Colonel Sander’s offerings are going to have a pervasive effect inside your body.

There is also a worrying psychological aspect; it’s thought that people who take multivitamins feel they have more junk food and exercise lay-day credits than people who don’t. Sadly, the Grim Reaper doesn’t factor in these supposed get-out clauses when he’s hard at the grind.

“The researchers found that there was no decrease or increase in mortality from all causes, such as cardiovascular disease or cancer, between people who took multivitamins and people who didn’t.”

THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS

Supplement manufacturers by law have to state that their product is not a replacement for real food, but if we can send dudes to the moon on powdered Sunday roasts then isn’t it logical that humans have progressed enough to make the “pill-diet” possible?

“Astronauts’ diets have been carefully formulated by top scientists to make sure no micro or macronutrient is overlooked,” says Dr Jerry Liu, a nutritionist and food chemist.

“On a global scale, this is actually done very successfully in animal models, with cows eating a mix of whole foods and artificially added nutrients. And you go on to enjoy their steaks as part of your balanced diet.”

Hell, even your pet pooch has his diet created in a lab and he’s living longer than ever.

“In theory, you can live on supplements, but the DIY approach will no doubt leave you with serious holes in your dietary requirements because you won’t have the tech to monitor how much of each nutrient your body is absorbing,” adds Dr Liu.

Even though product labels are monitored to make sure they’re truthful, you can’t be 100 percent sure you’re getting exactly what they claim to contain.

“Often the processing destroys many of the unstable micronutrients and digestive enzymes your body needs to absorb [certain] nutrients,” Dr Liu continues.

“Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they’re not quite a match just yet.”

Real organic food guarantees health, but you take a risk by trying to supplement yourself healthy—unless your bedroom is built by NASA.

“Obviously, if you’re eating badly then taking something like a green supplement is going to be significantly better for you than not taking it,” explains Dr Liu. “Many green supplements are getting frighteningly close nutrient levels to real foods, but they’re not quite a match just yet.”

So take them to put something healthy back into your body, but remember that they’re not a sure enough bet just yet to risk your neck on.

HELPING HANDS

Dutifully sticking to a nutrition strategy doesn’t always dish up world-class results. Occasionally getting a little lax with your diet is not just an extravagance, but a necessity. Cheat meals can actually help you stick to your diet, found research at the University of Illinois. The break from restricting calories helps keep you on track.

“Looking forward to a cheat meal at the end of the week keeps people disciplined and actually has the power to speed up metabolism and burn more calories,” says Moodie Dennaoui, nutritionist to world champion boxers such as Billy Dib.

But if you want to gorge on cheat meals that would make The Rock envious then you’re presented with an opportunity to out-supplement a bad meal. “There is a lot of scientific evidence behind the effectiveness of carbs blockers on the market and to a lesser extent fat blockers have also shown some promise,” says Dr Liu.

“Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body’s ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.”

Supplements with white kidney bean extract can reduce your body’s ability to digest carbs and reduce the number of calories you extract from your cheat meal.

Just as you mentally prepare for your big burger blowout, you should also plan to reduce its ill effects by using these supplements. But what about long-term periods of junk-food binges, such as a holiday, where you regularly visit restaurants and buffets?

“Taking a fiber supplement can be beneficial because processed foods lack this nutrient and it helps to push the food through your digestive system,” says Dr Liu. “This means the toxins won’t be in your system as long as they would be otherwise.”

It may not be a great long-term strategy, but it will certainly help you come back from a holiday with a tan instead of belly.

IT’S ALL IN THE NAME

If you wash down pizzas with an extra-strength green super-drink then you definitely cushion the blow. Yes, today’s supplements can almost do the job of a king-sized salad, but it still can’t quite match it.

“Fresh foods are alive and the nutrients are as concentrated as you’ll ever eat,” says Dr Liu. “You may get 1,000 micrograms of spinach from a teaspoon of a green supplement, but that’s never going to outshine the benefits of fresh food.”

Mother Nature isn’t a girl who can be bested just yet, and supplements remain supplements—not substitutes. So be a man and eat like a man, not a child.


Recommended For You

3 Types Of Muscle-Building Supplements For Overall Growth

In its inaugural edition, TRAIN magazine, the newest health and fitness bible, reveals the truth about how they work and what you should be taking when.

Vindicating Vitamins: Protecting Your Health Is Never A ‘Waste’

Don’t fall for sensational headlines and slanted science about vitamin/mineral supplementation. Nothing short of your long-term health is at stake.

Stone Age Sustenance: Fill The Gaps In Your Modern Diet With Smart Supplementation

The cavemen were lucky in one way: Today’s produce is half the quality it once was. Fill the gaps in your modern diet with smart supplementation!

Link:  

Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

Posted in Bodybuilding, Diets, Exercises, Nutrition, UncategorizedComments Off on Can You Out-Supplement A Bad Diet?

<div id="DPG" webReader="187.485974851"><p>We've all experienced it. After a week of rigorous exercise and dieting—and Tupperware containers full of broccoli, brown rice, and chicken—you feel an uncontrollable urge to stray from your carefully planned meal plan. You measured and weighed all your meals but, alas, you hear ice cream and pasta calling your name. As it turns out, that voice could be especially loud if you're a woman.</p><p>According to a study published in the "International Journal of Eating Disorders,"<sup>1</sup> women tend to crave sugary snacks like chocolate, ice cream, and donuts. Men, on the other hand, prefer to sink their teeth into a well-marbled porterhouse. Women seem to lack <a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/protein.htm">protein</a> in their diets, even when it comes to cheat meals! A lack of protein can be problematic for anyone, but it's especially troubling for women in the gym.</p><p>While your body needs carbs and healthy fats for energy, protein is essential for tissue growth and repair. If you're in the gym knocking out tough sets of squats and Romanian deadlifts, a lack of protein in your diet can hinder your body's ability to recover and grow!</p><p>Read on to learn more about the myriad powers of protein and how you can put them to work!</p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c11">1 The Importance Of Protein</h3>
</p><p>The reasons for adding more protein to your diet plan are numerous. Of the 20 <a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/amino.html">amino acids</a> that make up protein, nine are essential. "Essential" means that your body can't manufacture these aminos on its own. The only way they can be consumed is through food. Dietary protein supplies the building blocks of muscle tissue. It also supplies the materials needed for neurotransmitters and hormones.</p><img src="images/2014/a-womans-guide-to-demystifying-protein-1.jpg" width="560" height="325"/><p>Women tend to crave sugary snacks like chocolate, ice cream, and donuts. Men, on the other hand, prefer to sink their teeth into a well-marbled porterhouse.</p><p>Each time you hit the gym for a workout, you break your muscle tissues down. You actually build them <em>outside</em> the gym. To do that, however, you need enough fuel. With proper protein intake, amino acids come to the rescue of your damaged muscle, repairing those tissues so they grow back even stronger.</p><p>Protein provides other key benefits to the hard-working, fit female.</p><h4>Protein: </h4><p>If you're constantly ravenous throughout the day, you're probably not eating enough protein at every meal. Compared to carbohydrates, protein takes longer to break down and digest.</p><p>This slow digestion time means you'll stay fuller longer and keep hunger at bay, making it easier to hit your caloric intake and macros for bodyweight maintenance.</p><h4>Protein: </h4><img src="images/2014/a-womans-guide-to-demystifying-protein-2.jpg" width="288" height="271" border="0" class="right-image c13"/><p>If you're constantly ravenous throughout the day, you're probably not eating enough protein at every meal.</p><p>Protein has the highest thermic effect of food (TEF), which is the amount of calories it takes your body to process and utilize a nutrient. At 20-35 percent, protein has the highest TEF.</p><p>This means that your body actually uses 20-35 percent of the energy from protein consumed just to digest and absorb it!</p><p>Out of every 100 calories you get from protein, 25-30 are burned in the digestion process.</p><p>Since your body expends more energy to process proteins than it does to digest carbohydrates and fats, people who consume more protein throughout the day might see faster fat-loss results than people on a lower-protein diet plan.</p><h4>Protein: </h4><p>As your caloric intake drops, and carbohydrates and fats become scarce on a strict diet, there's a greater chance that your body will turn to incoming protein for energy. This leaves less protein for various bodily functions.</p><p>If insufficient amino acids are present, your body will start breaking down muscle tissue to get individual aminos. For you, this could mean a loss in muscle and a slower resting metabolism. Protect against this by prioritizing protein!</p><h4>Protein: </h4><p>Oh, the wonders of whey. If you choose to add <a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/whey.html">whey protein powder</a> to your diet, you'll be taking in more than muscle-building strength gains. You get an immune boost, as well. Whey protein contains glutathione, a tripeptide that helps strengthen immune function.<sup>2</sup></p><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/bpi-sports/whey-hd.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/bpi-sports-whey-hd-banner.jpg" width="560" height="144"/></a><p>
<h3 class="article-title c11">2 Myths About Protein</h3>
</p><p>One of the reasons that some women shy away from protein is because they believe the myths. Don't let false rumors cost you gains. Clear up confusion by separating fact from fiction.</p><h4>Myth: </h4><img src="images/2014/a-womans-guide-to-demystifying-protein-3.jpg" width="265" height="533" border="0" class="right-image"/><p>Protein will make you stronger. It won't turn you into an "overly ripped" version of yourself.</p><p>Protein will make you stronger. Associate it with powerful, lean muscle gains, not a masculine physique. Choosing chicken over chocolate and hitting the weights hard won't turn you into an "overly ripped" version of yourself. Put your mind at ease and know that this simply won't occur.</p><p>Ladies, remember that your body contains just a fraction of the testosterone needed to build up lean muscle tissue. Even with the addition of protein, you're not going to pack on muscle the same way your male counterpart might.</p><p>Your body can also only make so much lean muscle per day. Excess protein won't necessarily increase your muscular development. Excess protein gets broken into amino acids to be used as fuel or excreted, so don't worry too much about this myth.</p><h4>Myth: </h4><p>If you have pre-existing kidney problems, then you definitely want to be a little more careful about adding protein to your diet plan. But, provided you're an active woman in good health, you can safely increase your protein intake.</p><p>Just remember that increased protein can be dehydrating, so you'll want to increase your water consumption at the same time.</p><h4>Myth: </h4><p>There's no definitive proof that high-protein diets cause the excess acid load that's been linked to bone loss and poor health.</p><p>In fact, according to the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition," studies found that high-protein diets had a small but significant benefit to the lumbar spine.<sup>3</sup></p><p>
<h3 class="article-title c11">3 Your Essential Protein Intake</h3>
</p><p>So, how much protein do you need? The suggested number differs depending on the source.</p><p>According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the standard food guide recommendation for the average individual is set around 46 grams per day for women and 65 grams per day for men.<sup>4</sup></p><p>Keep in mind, however, that this is the recommendation for the average, semi-sedentary individual. If you're constantly exercising and breaking down lean muscle tissue, your required protein intake needs to increase. Likewise, if you diet and consume fewer calories from carbs and fats, the macros you consume from protein will need to increase.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/a-womans-guide-to-demystifying-protein-brooke.jpg" width="560" height="380" class="c13"/><p>People who just exercise and do not diet should aim to consume somewhere around 0.8-1 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily.</p><p>People who just exercise and do not diet should aim to consume somewhere around 0.8-1 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily.</p><p>If you're dieting and exercising, aim higher—between 1-1.5 grams of protein per pound of your bodyweight per day. As your caloric intake decreases, your protein needs will actually increase, so keep that in mind as you plan out your diet.</p><p>Focus on eating high-quality protein sources such as chicken, fish, lean red meat, eggs, low-fat dairy products, and quality whey protein powder.</p><h5>References</h5><ol class="dpg-list"><li><a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11429982" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11429982</a></li>
<li><a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1426093" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1426093</a></li>
<li><a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19889822" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19889822</a></li>
<li><a href="http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/protein.html#How%20much%20protein" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/protein.html#How%20much%20protein</a></li>
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Women And Protein: Your Complete Guide

We’ve all experienced it. After a week of rigorous exercise and dieting—and Tupperware containers full of broccoli, brown rice, and chicken—you feel an uncontrollable urge to stray from your carefully planned meal plan. You measured and weighed all your meals but, alas, you hear ice cream and pasta calling your name. As it turns out, that voice could be especially loud if you’re a woman.

According to a study published in the “International Journal of Eating Disorders,”1 women tend to crave sugary snacks like chocolate, ice cream, and donuts. Men, on the other hand, prefer to sink their teeth into a well-marbled porterhouse. Women seem to lack protein in their diets, even when it comes to cheat meals! A lack of protein can be problematic for anyone, but it’s especially troubling for women in the gym.

While your body needs carbs and healthy fats for energy, protein is essential for tissue growth and repair. If you’re in the gym knocking out tough sets of squats and Romanian deadlifts, a lack of protein in your diet can hinder your body’s ability to recover and grow!

Read on to learn more about the myriad powers of protein and how you can put them to work!

1 The Importance Of Protein

The reasons for adding more protein to your diet plan are numerous. Of the 20 amino acids that make up protein, nine are essential. “Essential” means that your body can’t manufacture these aminos on its own. The only way they can be consumed is through food. Dietary protein supplies the building blocks of muscle tissue. It also supplies the materials needed for neurotransmitters and hormones.

Women tend to crave sugary snacks like chocolate, ice cream, and donuts. Men, on the other hand, prefer to sink their teeth into a well-marbled porterhouse.

Each time you hit the gym for a workout, you break your muscle tissues down. You actually build them outside the gym. To do that, however, you need enough fuel. With proper protein intake, amino acids come to the rescue of your damaged muscle, repairing those tissues so they grow back even stronger.

Protein provides other key benefits to the hard-working, fit female.

Protein:

If you’re constantly ravenous throughout the day, you’re probably not eating enough protein at every meal. Compared to carbohydrates, protein takes longer to break down and digest.

This slow digestion time means you’ll stay fuller longer and keep hunger at bay, making it easier to hit your caloric intake and macros for bodyweight maintenance.

Protein:

If you’re constantly ravenous throughout the day, you’re probably not eating enough protein at every meal.

Protein has the highest thermic effect of food (TEF), which is the amount of calories it takes your body to process and utilize a nutrient. At 20-35 percent, protein has the highest TEF.

This means that your body actually uses 20-35 percent of the energy from protein consumed just to digest and absorb it!

Out of every 100 calories you get from protein, 25-30 are burned in the digestion process.

Since your body expends more energy to process proteins than it does to digest carbohydrates and fats, people who consume more protein throughout the day might see faster fat-loss results than people on a lower-protein diet plan.

Protein:

As your caloric intake drops, and carbohydrates and fats become scarce on a strict diet, there’s a greater chance that your body will turn to incoming protein for energy. This leaves less protein for various bodily functions.

If insufficient amino acids are present, your body will start breaking down muscle tissue to get individual aminos. For you, this could mean a loss in muscle and a slower resting metabolism. Protect against this by prioritizing protein!

Protein:

Oh, the wonders of whey. If you choose to add whey protein powder to your diet, you’ll be taking in more than muscle-building strength gains. You get an immune boost, as well. Whey protein contains glutathione, a tripeptide that helps strengthen immune function.2

2 Myths About Protein

One of the reasons that some women shy away from protein is because they believe the myths. Don’t let false rumors cost you gains. Clear up confusion by separating fact from fiction.

Myth:

Protein will make you stronger. It won’t turn you into an “overly ripped” version of yourself.

Protein will make you stronger. Associate it with powerful, lean muscle gains, not a masculine physique. Choosing chicken over chocolate and hitting the weights hard won’t turn you into an “overly ripped” version of yourself. Put your mind at ease and know that this simply won’t occur.

Ladies, remember that your body contains just a fraction of the testosterone needed to build up lean muscle tissue. Even with the addition of protein, you’re not going to pack on muscle the same way your male counterpart might.

Your body can also only make so much lean muscle per day. Excess protein won’t necessarily increase your muscular development. Excess protein gets broken into amino acids to be used as fuel or excreted, so don’t worry too much about this myth.

Myth:

If you have pre-existing kidney problems, then you definitely want to be a little more careful about adding protein to your diet plan. But, provided you’re an active woman in good health, you can safely increase your protein intake.

Just remember that increased protein can be dehydrating, so you’ll want to increase your water consumption at the same time.

Myth:

There’s no definitive proof that high-protein diets cause the excess acid load that’s been linked to bone loss and poor health.

In fact, according to the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,” studies found that high-protein diets had a small but significant benefit to the lumbar spine.3

3 Your Essential Protein Intake

So, how much protein do you need? The suggested number differs depending on the source.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the standard food guide recommendation for the average individual is set around 46 grams per day for women and 65 grams per day for men.4

Keep in mind, however, that this is the recommendation for the average, semi-sedentary individual. If you’re constantly exercising and breaking down lean muscle tissue, your required protein intake needs to increase. Likewise, if you diet and consume fewer calories from carbs and fats, the macros you consume from protein will need to increase.

People who just exercise and do not diet should aim to consume somewhere around 0.8-1 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily.

People who just exercise and do not diet should aim to consume somewhere around 0.8-1 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily.

If you’re dieting and exercising, aim higher—between 1-1.5 grams of protein per pound of your bodyweight per day. As your caloric intake decreases, your protein needs will actually increase, so keep that in mind as you plan out your diet.

Focus on eating high-quality protein sources such as chicken, fish, lean red meat, eggs, low-fat dairy products, and quality whey protein powder.

References
  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11429982
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1426093
  3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19889822
  4. http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/protein.html#How%20much%20protein


About The Author

I’ve been working in the field of exercise science for the last 8 years. I’ve written a number of online and print articles.

Visit link – 

Women And Protein: Your Complete Guide

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