How Much Protein Should You Be Having?


March 26th, 2021   |   Updated on June 27th, 2022

Protein is one of those big things that you hear about in every nutrition blog, workout program, every resource you can find on the internet and anywhere else.

It’s no wonder why it’s such a big deal, protein is a macronutrient that we need to help build and repair muscle tissue, and it keeps us from getting hungry in a long-term sense.

Many websites will tell you to just get as much protein as possible in your diet, only from very specific sources. But in actuality, how much protein you need can vary vastly based on quite a few different factors.

Here’s how you can tell how much protein that you, as a person, actually need on a daily basis.

The Basic Recommendation

First, let’s go with the basic protein requirements by the National Academy of Medicine. It is recommended that adults get just over 7 grams of protein for every 20 pounds of body weight that they have.

Though this is a great jumping-off point to defer to when creating your own nutrition plan, this number can change based on a bunch of different factors, specifically your age, weight, and fitness goals.

How Much Do You Weigh?

To first determine the amount of protein you will need as an average adult just looking to maintain your current body weight and muscle mass, you just have to do a tiny bit of math.

For example, the “average woman” (which obviously is just one example) is 5’4” and weighs around 170 pounds. To calculate the necessary protein intake for someone of your stature, first, divide 170 by 20. That will give you 8.5.

Then, just multiply that number by 7, which would give you 59.5 (go ahead and round that up to 60). You need to have 60 grams of protein per day to keep your muscle mass good and healthy.

How Old Are You?

The next biggest factor in protein intake is how old you are. Age greatly affects how much protein we need, due to things like different ailments you could encounter at different ages.

Ages 18-65

This is a very large range, which makes it sort of easy to keep track of your protein needs for decades. That’s because your protein intake will be more based on personal fitness goals and level of activity than how old you are.

For ages 18 up to 65, the dietary allowance for protein is .8 grams per kg. For adults within this age range looking to build muscle, this number will go up.

Ages 65 And Over

As we age, we usually need even more protein, since their muscles are likely to break down more easily, and their bodies are less efficient at processing protein.

Making sure you get enough protein can put those over 65 at a lower risk of sarcopenia, which is the breakdown and weakening of muscle mass, function, and strength.

This bumps that requirement up from .8 to 1 or 1.2 per kg, meaning that a 150-pound woman will need as many as 81 grams of protein and a 180-pound man will need up to 98 grams.

Ages Under 18

For kids under the age of 18, needs are broken down into small age groups. From 4 to 9 kids need around 19 grams of protein, age 9-13 need around 34, and 14-18 need 52 grams for boys and 46 grams for girls.

Even if kids compete in sports at this age, they actually don’t need to pump up protein intake significantly until they’re closer to 18.

What Is Your Activity Level?

Activity level is incredibly important, since the more you move around, the more likely you are to cause muscle damage. Since protein repairs torn muscles, you may need to up your intake.

What Are Your Goals?

If you are looking to build some serious muscles, you will need more lean protein to support that muscle growth.

Health Disclaimer :

Information provided by does in no way substitute for qualified medical opinion. Any text, videos or any other material provided by us should be considered as generic information only. Any health related information may vary from person to person, hence we advice you to consult specialists for more information.