Eating more protein than your body needs can interfere with your health and fitness goals in a number of ways, including weight gain, extra body fat, stress on your kidneys,1 dehydration, and leaching of important bone minerals.
Granted, your body needs protein. Protein and its array of amino acids are the primary building blocks for your muscles, bones, and many hormones. You cannot live without it.
As you age, and during pregnancy, consuming sufficient amounts of high-quality protein is especially important, as your ability to process protein declines with age, raising your protein requirements.
This is especially true for aging males. Protein helps preserve lean muscle that is typically lost with age. High quality proteins from pasture raised animals are more easily used by your body than those from plants.2
That said, there is an upper limit to how much protein your body can actually use. On average, Americans consume anywhere from three to five times more protein than they need for optimal health, along with far too many carbohydrates and not enough healthy fats.
Every bodybuilder knows that protein is vital to building muscle mass.
Being sure to consume enough protein is often the biggest concern of fitness freaks.
Because of the abundance of meat in the typical American diet, most people are in no danger of having a protein deficiency.
Rather, it is much more likely that Americans are consuming too much protein.