For more than 50 years, it’s been easy to convince men to eat more protein. It’s an essential building block for building muscle, something the general population of men is mostly looking for to maintain healthy muscle mass and keeping strong. It’s harder to sell the same idea to women, as the majority of women are afraid to look too “bulky”. Mainstream magazines for women have often focused on manipulating carbohydrates, fats, and calories. In recent years, however, protein has started taking over in the female fitness community as a focal area in attaining the physique most women are looking for.
The ultra-lean supermodel look isn’t as popular as it used to be. It’s slowly being replaced by a more athletic look with significantly more muscle. Protein offers many other benefits, including helping control hunger by increasing satiety and stabilizing energy levels.
What we often misunderstand, is how much protein women really need. Ideal recommendations by the Institute of Medicine range from 0.4g of protein per kilogram (2.2 pounds) of body weight for those with a sedentary lifestyle and 0.85 g for those who regularly exercise. We can compare this to a 126-pound inactive female who just needs 23g of protein a day, and a woman who hits the gym every other day of the week for about 48 grams.