The importance of protein in exercise that health enthusiasts should know!

Published 14 March 2023
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Key Takeaways

  • Protein is an essential nutrient for people who exercise because it helps to build muscle mass, stimulate metabolism, increase endurance, maintain internal balance, and boost the immune system
  • Good sources of protein for exercise include chicken breast and fish, eggs, and cow’s milk, as well as various types of beans and legumes. People who exercise should aim to consume 2-3 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.

Exercise and consuming enough protein are essential, especially for those who follow influencers who emphasize fitness. You may notice that each meal is filled with protein-rich nutrients, and many may not understand why protein is so important for exercise. Today, we have gathered information on protein and the reasons why athletes or fitness enthusiasts need to consume enough protein. This is to help everyone understand and become aware of the importance of protein.

Why do people who exercise need to eat protein?

Athletes, bodybuilders, or the general public who exercise regularly, nutrition is often considered important, especially when it comes to protein. Protein is a fundamental component of the human body, which has a role in increasing strength, repairing damaged tissues, and building muscle mass. Therefore, protein is an important aid that helps improve exercise performance effectively.

Benefits of protein for people who exercise

1. Protein helps to build and maintain muscle mass

Image: Protein helps to build muscle mass

Muscles are important for generating force and facilitating movement, and consuming protein alongside exercise can enhance muscle growth and strength. Additionally, protein intake can help to maintain and prevent the breakdown of muscle mass. This is why athletes and individuals who exercise regularly recognize the importance of consuming sufficient protein.

2. Protein helps stimulate metabolism

Image: Protein helps boost calorie burning

Burning calories is one of the important goals of exercising, and consuming a high amount of protein can help stimulate calorie burning while increasing the amount of calories burned per day. Research has found that the group of people who consume high amounts of protein have a higher level of calorie burning compared to the group of people who consume low amounts of protein.

3.  It is possible to exercise for a longer period of time

Image: Person exercising

The longer we exercise, the more we can increase our calorie burn. Exercise focuses on using our muscles, so we need to strengthen our muscles by consuming sufficient protein. This allows protein to repair and rebuild worn-out muscles. This helps us to play sports and exercise longer and harder than before.

4. Helps maintain internal balance in the body

Image: Protein helps maintain body balance

As proteins play a role in maintaining the balance of various things in the human body at normal levels, such as blood sugar levels, the amount of water in blood vessels and cells, as well as pH balance. They also help to control body functions and produce important chemicals such as enzymes and hormones. Therefore, in the event of injury, they can aid in quick repair.

5. Boosting immune system

Image: Protein helps strengthen the immune system

Some types of protein have a role in increasing the levels of glutathione or antioxidants in the body. In addition, protein is also a component of antibodies that help strengthen the immune system. Proteins are used to create various cells and are part of tissues, helping cells involved in the immune system function better. This allows people to live and perform activities more efficiently.

The amount of protein that people who exercise need

Image: Protein intake for people who exercise

Certainly, people who exercise regularly need to consume a higher amount of protein than the average person because protein is necessary for repairing and building muscle used during exercise. Typically, the average person needs about 0.8-1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, while those who exercise regularly need about 2-3 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.

For example, a person weighing 60 kilograms would need 60 grams of protein per day, but if this person is serious about exercising, they would need about 120-180 grams of protein per day.

The protein source

1. Chicken breast and fish fillets

Image: Chicken breast and fish fillets

It is a protein source that meets the needs of people who are exercising and controlling their weight. This is because chicken breast and fish fillets are rich in protein and low in fat. A 100-gram serving of skinless chicken breast can provide approximately 23 grams of protein, while a 100-gram serving of tilapia fish can provide approximately 13 grams of protein. These are good and beneficial options, and also delicious.

2. Chicken eggs and cow’s milk

Image: Chicken eggs and cow’s milk

Another animal protein source that helps to diversify the diet of people who exercise more is chicken eggs and cow’s milk. One egg white contains about 4 grams of protein, while 100 grams of cow’s milk contains about 3 grams of protein. When consuming chicken eggs, it is recommended to focus on egg whites because egg yolks contain high amounts of fat. Additionally, it is best to prepare eggs by boiling or poaching to reduce the amount of fat and calories consumed.

3. Various types of beans and grains

Image: Various types of beans and grains

Snacks for exercise enthusiasts, Unprocessed beans and grains, are considered to be high-nutrient plant-based protein sources, as they are rich in vitamins, dietary fiber, and good fats. For example, 100 grams of roasted peanuts contain up to 26 grams of protein and 40 grams of good fats, but they also come with high energy at 570 calories. Therefore, exercise enthusiasts who need to control their weight should calculate the appropriate amount of consumption.

The difference in protein consumption at different times

Image: Protein consumption at different times
  • Eating after waking up in the morning is suitable for people who exercise and want to lose weight, because the morning or after waking up is a time when the stomach is empty. This allows the body to fully absorb and utilize the nutrients, which helps reduce cravings throughout the day.
  • Eating during exercise is suitable for those who do high-intensity workouts that involve a lot of resistance, such as weight training. Consuming protein during exercise can help build and reduce muscle soreness effectively.
  • Eating after exercising is a popular time for athletes to consume protein because consuming protein within 2 hours after exercising or practicing sports can help the body effectively absorb and use protein, as well as continuously stimulate metabolism.

In addition to regular exercise, choosing to consume products with sufficient amounts of protein each day is also important. Athletes, health enthusiasts, or those who care about their meals and want to increase their options for protein intake should consider adding boiled chicken dishes to their meals. This is a good idea and can be done easily.

NH Foods ready-to-eat boiled chicken products have a delicious, juicy flavor and are high in protein and low in calories. They are produced and packaged with high-quality standards for safety and cleanliness. The packaging clearly indicates the nutritional information, including detailed protein content.

Shop for ready-to-eat cooked chicken products

NH Foods products can be found at leading department stores nationwide, including Big C, The Mall, Tops Market, and Don Don Donki. However, if you’re not able to go shopping outside, you can also order them SHOPEE NH Foods’ ready-to-eat cooked chicken breast products are a suitable option for health-conscious people who want to create and maintain good health in the way they want.

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