How Much Is Too Much Protein?

If you exceed the Recommended Daily Allowance of protein (RDA) you increase the risk of getting fat…simple as that. However, this does NOT have to be a problem you face, so long as you consume no more than 1-2g protein per kg body weight per day, or 2-3g per kg body weight if you’re an athlete or regularly placing your muscles under strain i.e. in the gym or tarmac when out running!

Basically an excess of protein calls a process known as Gluconeogenesis into action, this is when the body utilises the amino acids and turns them into glucose. An excess of glucose will result in fat storage and thus weight gain.

Protein can, is, and should continue to be used as a means to weight loss, it’s ability to increase muscle mass inherently increases resting energy expenditure (REE) which in turn burns more calories, and thus fat at rest!

When it comes to protein then, do it…but make sure you do it properly!

About the Author

Job Role Qualified Dietitian and Sports Nutritionist Qualifications BSc (Hons) Sports Science | BSc (Hons) Dietetics Tom has always participated in sport both recreationally and competitively which led to an unquenchable thirst for information on anything health, nutrition and fitness. After leaving school Tom went on to play for a football academy during which time he studied Sport and Exercise Science. From here he went on to study a BSc (Hons) Sport Science at UEA followed by his second BSc (Hons) degree, this time at the University of Hertfordshire studying Dietetics. Tom has worked in the fitness, educational and clinical nutrition industry starting out at David Lloyd Health and Leisure Clubs. He then went on to work as a Dietitian (RD) in the NHS, during which time he conducted clinics for healthy eating, weight loss and weight gain, as well as specialised consultations on Diabetes, IBS and Coeliac disease to name a few. He has vast amounts of experience at devising diet plans and supplement regimens, as well as working in the community with schools and competitive athletes. As Head Nutritionist and Supplement expert at Discount Supplements Tom is here to provide current and evidence based health and nutrition information to help you reach your health and fitness goals!


  • Darren
    June 25, 2013 Darren

    Too many calories make you gain weight, not too much protein, realistically I could have 15 protein shakes a day which would be around 400g of protein or roughly 1800 calories counting in the little fat and carbs in them. I'd still love weight drastically as I am 90kg even though I'm consuming 4.5g of protein per kg of body weight.

    At the end of the day it's calories in -v- calories 'out' which affects weight gain and weight loss, not particularly any individual macronutrient.

    I'm not suggesting it's healthy to do the above or anything along those lines but eating more than 2g of protein per kg of bodyweight won't automatically make you put on weight, it may increase your chances as you said but at the end of it, 99% of it is calorie surplus.

    • Tom

      Couldn't agree more...but 100% of weight gain is calorie surplus, or 'positive energy balance' as i like to put it. Thanks for the comment.

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