How Many Calories In A Gram Of Protein?

How many calories in a gram of protein

Every food has a caloric value. How many calories in a gram of protein? Burning calories is actually an ongoing process that occurs in our body. Our body uses the necessary energy from food for daily activities, which consume calories.

A lot of people consume more calories with food than their body needs. Too much of calories show as obesity and fat. This certainly doesn’t benefit our health. So it is essential that we burn excess calories. Of course, we spend them the most with sport activities.

Proteins are vital when you want to gain muscles and lose some pounds. This macronutrient build the muscles and take care of their regeneration. It this article we will focus on proteins, protein food and their caloric value.

What is a Calorie?

A calorie is a measurement unit. As meter accurately determines the distance between point A and B, calorie determines how much heat we need to warm 1 gram of water for 1 degree Celsius. Calorie is the energy of the food. However, the unit can be used for any of the other (edible or toxic) material, for example gasoline. A liter of gasoline has thus approximately 8000 kcal.

What determines the Calorific Content of the Food or a Meal?

caloric value of the foodThe composition of the meal, i.e. carbohydrate, protein and fat determines how much potential energy is hidden in every meal.

Micronutrients also can have a certain energy potential, but it is negligible. The same applies to spices. When calculating the energy value of home-made dishes, we don’t consider the energy of dry spices.

How many calories in a gram of protein? When calculating the calorific value of dishes, we sum the energy values of the individual macronutrient components:

1 gram of carbohydrate and 1 gram of protein each have 4 Kcal;

1 gram of fat has 9 Kcal.

How Many Calories does an Adult Needs?

An adult person needs approximately 2300 to 2500 calories daily. People who do heavy physical work must rise the calorie intake to 4000 calories and more. However, the average daily calorie requirement depends on the structure of the body, age, gender, height, weight, the type of work, physical activity, and the body of the individual.

The need for calories decreases with age, while for all age groups, both sexes, and all kinds of professions is the most important that the food is balanced. A grown man needs 100 to 130 grams of protein, 60 to 100 grams of fat and 400 to 500 grams of carbohydrates daily for normal life and work that requires moderate effort. Therefore a calorie need shouldn’t exceed 3500 calories per day even with increased effort.

The Importance of Proteins

Proteins provide the body with amino acids and other nitrogen compounds, which are necessary for the production of the body’s own proteins and other metabolically active substances. Proteins are important because without them the body can’t grow, nor shall develop or regenerate. The protein needs changes with age, but people urgently need them for living. A person should get 9 indispensable (essential) amino acids with food:

  • histidine
  • isoleucine
  • leucine
  • lysine
  • methionine
  • phenylalanine
  • threonine
  • tryptophan and
  • valine

These amino acids need to be taken with food. Studies indicate that there may be reduced levels of histidine in plasma, and a decrease in hemoglobin synthesis in the nutrition without histidine.

The recommended minimum daily intake for children and adolescents is between 0.9 and 1.0 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, depending on the age.

biological value of proteinExperimentally determined average need for protein in adult with a high biological value (eggs, milk, meat, and fish) amounted to 0.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. The biological value of protein is the ratio between the available and the total amount of protein digested and absorbed.

However, since we get proteins of plant origin also, which have on average a lower biological value, it is recommended that we consume protein intake of 0.8 g per kg of body weight per day. Protein intake should represent from 10 to 15% of the daily energy intake in relation to the age group, but not more than 20% of daily energy intake.

Which Food Contain Proteins?

Rich sources of animal protein are meat, fish, eggs, dairy products, and milk. Even the food of plant origin contains more protein, especially legumes (e.g. beans, peas, and soybeans).

Animal proteins are found in meat (choose lean cuts of meat, remove the skin of the poultry), meat products, fish, seafood, eggs, milk, cheese and curd. Rich sources of plant proteins are wholesome cereals and cereal products, legumes, nuts and soy.

The nutritional value of protein foods of animal and vegetable origin are complementary, and bring a high biological value and exploitability.

How many Calories in a Gram of Protein?

In general, one gram of protein has 4 Kcal. But how much protein does certain food have? Now you have a clue which food has proteins, and it is time that we look at protein food and their protein values.

Protein Amount in 100 g of the Food

  • Meat, fish 20- 26 g
  • Eggs 12 g
  • Hard cheese 21- 28 g
  • Soft cheese 13 g
  • Milk and milk products 3- 4 g
  • Fruit 1- 2 g
  • Vegetables 3- 4 g
  • Rice 2 g
  • Bread 8- 12 g
  • Nuts 19- 25 g
  • Legumes 22 g in 100 g of fresh legumes, and 4 g in 100 g of boiled legumes

How Proteins Help in Losing Fat and Building a Beautiful Body?

The benefits of eating proteins are building muscle and fat loss. Food rich in protein and healthy fat reduce the intake of (processed) carbohydrates, which are the main reason for getting excess weight.

ideal plateAnother fact is that the body uses more energy to digest protein (thermogenesis) than for digestion of (processed) carbohydrates.

Thus, we burn more calories indirectly, because we are fed for a longer time, and we eat less. In this way we regulate the level of insulin, which is the main culprit for fat stockpiling.

So how many calories in a gram of protein? One gram of protein has 4Kcal of calories. Proteins should represent between 10 and 15% of daily energy intake. An adult needs daily 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.

Children, pregnant women, nursing mothers, athletes and older adults need a little more proteins. Our suggestion is that you don’t focus on calories so much, but on balanced meals which contain carbohydrates, proteins, fats and vegetables.

About Vania Pinteric 351 Articles
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