By Beau

It seems to me that there is not enough information on protein - what it's used for, where it comes from, where it goes. Most of us know that protein helps the muscles repair and grow within the rebuilding phase known as the "super compensation phase" where your body breaks down and mends itself with the delivery of water and glycogen around the body.

//Where is it?
Protein can be found in meats, eggs, dairy, dark green leafy vegetables and supplements such as protein shakes and BCAAs. Handy chart here.

//How much?
Now the amount of protein the body can handle per day is 0.8 grams per kilogram of your bodyweight for sedentary men & women, 1.0 – 1.2 grams per kilo for elite female athletes and 1.2 – 1.5 grams per kilo for elite male athletes (EG if you weight 61kg: 61kg x 0.8 grams = 48.8 grams per day). But what happens if you go over your limit? Where does it go? Does  your body burn it up? Does it come out in your poop or does it just disappear?

The correct answer is that what hasn’t been utilised metabolically by your body is broken down into building blocks known as peptides. Peptides are further broken down into amino acids, the amino acids are absorbed through the small intestine's lining and enter the blood stream.  From here, some of the amino acids build the body's protein stores. Excess amino acids are converted to fats and sugars that will store through out the body and flow out the kidneys and out of the urinary stream.

Don’t forget that there is also harm in retaining excess protein. For example, excess protein may lead to dehydration, because protein metabolism requires extra water for utilisation and excretion (i.e. elimination) of its by-products. Since exercising individuals are already at an increased risk for dehydration, the additional strain of protein waste excretion may further promote dehydration as well as kidney damage. So when you hear dudes talking about protein and how it makes them huge and they need as much of it as they can it's not the correct information. Fitness and health is so widely misinterpreted and should be tailored to you for the best and safest results!

So make sure you eat the right amount of protein and drink plenty of water!