T Nation

Protein Absorption?

I’ve been lurking for a while now but can’t seem to find a good answer to my question using the search function. From what I’ve read I should be eating about 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. 185 lbs 185 grams of protein. I have also read that the body can only absorb 20 grams at one time. Does this mean that I should be eating 9 or 10 separate times a day? Seems like it would be tough to do. Any advice is appreciated.
Thanks
Pat

It depends on what you’re eating/drinking.

If you drank like 80 grams of whey at once, yeah you wouldn’t be able to absorb all of it. Stuff like casein takes longer to go into your system since it forms a gel in your stomach. So that would take hours to fully absorb.

Depending on what you’re eating, food also takes longer to absorb.

The lesson is you want to space it out and not try to down like 100 grams of protein in a shake all at once because a lot of it probably isn’t going to make it where you want it to.

The body doesn’t waste nutrients, but scattering your meals across the day isn’t a bad idea. Eat how often you need to in order to maintain your progress.

I get around 150 g of protein timed around my workout in a 2 hour timespan and it is all being utilized. Also outside of your peri-workout nutrition, just because your body can’t “utilize” a set amount of protein with respect to muscle synthesis and cellular repair doesn’t mean that there are still benefits to relying upon that macronutrient as an energy source versus carbohydrates or fat. It’s also going to depend on your goals not to mention your overall diet and how you’re currently training.

Another thing worth mentioning is KISS; Keep it simple stupid. Don’t wind up like 95% of people and give yourself paralysis by analysis. You’re in the beginner forum and I know you’re trying to learn as much as you can, but shit like this is not what’s important for a beginner.

[quote]ridethecliche wrote:
If you drank like 80 grams of whey at once, yeah you wouldn’t be able to absorb all of it.[/quote]

Do you actually have any evidence of this?

[quote]aloysius wrote:
I’ve been lurking for a while now but can’t seem to find a good answer to my question using the search function. From what I’ve read I should be eating about 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. 185 lbs 185 grams of protein. I have also read that the body can only absorb 20 grams at one time. Does this mean that I should be eating 9 or 10 separate times a day? Seems like it would be tough to do. Any advice is appreciated.
Thanks
Pat
[/quote]

I don’t know anyone that does this and I believe you’re really overthinking it.

I get at least 250g protein daily from 4 to 6 meals. I also get another 50 to 100 grams from 1 to 2 Metabolic Drive shakes.

Thanks for the advice. I am definitely good at over thinking things. Just want to make sure all my gym time is as affective as possible. Not to mention protein gets expensive.

I get at least 250g protein daily from 4 to 6 meals. I also get another 50 to 100 grams from 1 to 2 Metabolic Drive shakes.[/quote]

You get 50 gram’s of protein per meal? That’s gotta add up.

[quote]dnlcdstn wrote:
You get 50 gram’s of protein per meal? That’s gotta add up.[/quote]

Yeah, it adds up to what I need to make gains.

Besides, it’s not really that much food if you enjoy eating.

[quote]aloysius wrote:
Thanks for the advice. I am definitely good at over thinking things. Just want to make sure all my gym time is as affective as possible. Not to mention protein gets expensive. [/quote]
I’m sorry but if you are gonna do this for the long run you need to drop the “Just want to make sure all my gym time is as affective as possible”. I know what you mean but going for perfection when it comes to this is a BIG mistake in my opinion. You should be trying to progress every time you go into the gym and eating to build muscle. Do this for years and years (be consistent) and you WILL be fine.

How about cutting the shit and doing what every successful gym rat or bodybuilder does - 1 to 2 grams per pound of bodyweight or 30 to 40% of the diet?

It usually works better than going by what professors measure in labs and this is coming from someone with an education in nutrition.