As we mentioned before, it is a known fact “Sarcopenia” (age related muscle loss) affects many baby-boomers. Estimations are that up to 30% of people older than 60 and more than 50% of people older than 80 are affected by sarcopenia.
The anabolic muscle building response provided from regular resistance training makes it the most effective interventions for Sarcopenia. In addition to promoting muscle mass building, resistance training will help improve mobility, enhances fitness, and increase bone health and strength.
But in order to get the best anabolic response from resistance training, your body needs to have access to the proper material to build those muscles. And that’s when intaking enough good quality protein comes in.
In the past, the recommended daily intake of protein has been low ( 0.8 grams of protein per kg of body weight). New exiting research has demonstrated that protein stores throughout the body naturally decrease with age. Some of these storage sites are: skeletal muscles, red blood cells, white blood cells… It has also been demonstrated that as you age, your body’s rate of protein catabolism is much higher and your digestive system has a harder time utilizing some of the proteins you have ingested. This can indeed create a protein deficiency known as a negative nitrogen balance which indicates that muscle is being broken down and used for energy. But following the results from these new research, the medical opinion now seems to agree that daily dietary protein for people 55 and over should be between 1 to 1.5g/kg to help maintain muscle mass and prevent the loss of body protein stores.
As trainers who greatly values the need of a strong muscle mass , we wholeheartedly agree with the new opinion of the medical system. Personally, we have been watching my daily protein intake for many years now. We have never really been one to count calories but we definitely intake between 1.5 to 2 grams of good quality protein per kgs of body weight every day. We eat a diet low on starchy carbohydrates. However, we make sure that protein is part of each of our main meals; breakfast – lunch and dinner. We always drink a post workout shake and also we often drink a protein shake as a snack during the day or before bed.
We have seen and felt the benefits of a regular intake of protein. Did you know that protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. And obviously, protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. Also as you age, eating sufficient high-quality protein can improve your mood, boost your resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression, and even help you think clearly.
The best way to get this 1 to 1.5 gr/kg of good quality protein is from fish, chicken, lean meats, whey protein and also dairy products. For the people who prefer not to intake animal protein, you can get complete protein ( all 20 amino acids) from hemp, soy and others.
Make sure you plan your meals properly so that you intake protein equally throughout the day. A study recently published in the Journal of Nutrition found that muscle protein synthesis was 25% higher when protein was evenly distributed across breakfast, lunch, and dinner compared with a more typical pattern, when most protein was consumed at the evening meal, even when total protein intake was the same.
Our job as a trainer/coach makes us want to keep everyone fit, strong and healthy for a VERY LONG TIME! Quality protein helps us stay strong. Hint, Hint!
Train Smarter – Not Harder!
Michel & Svetlana.