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mystro 10-13-2011 12:08 AM

The Body can Assimilate how much Protein?
Read an article which stated that the body can only assimilate 20-25gms of protein per sitting.So if that were the case 6x25 would amount to about 150gms per day.If this is true what happens to all the extra protein excreted or stored as fat.Read it in Joe Weider Ultimate Bodybuilding whats the skinny on this theory guys.

Abaddon 10-13-2011 12:35 AM

Joe Wieder and everything he stands for is a crock of shit. That's the skinny buddy.

It is conventional wisdom that somewhere between 20 and 30 grams of protein is absorbed in the gut IF that protein is your typical fast-absorping protein powder. This is the reason why dosages of protein powder are typically in this region.

But REAL food sources of protein take several hours to digest, all the way from the stomach to the colon. Meat protein, for example, is slowly absorped throughout the digestive process.

Also I think you're misreading the definition of '1 sitting'. You should be eating several meals throughout the day, equating to several 'sittings'.

BendtheBar 10-13-2011 01:04 AM


Originally Posted by mystro (Post 180057)
If this is true what happens to all the extra protein excreted or stored as fat.

Long term fat storage is dictated primarily by calorie intake. There are other factors at play, such as insulin sensitivity and the slowing of the metabolism. But extra protein is simply not turned into fat. If this were true, high protein, low carb, moderate fat cutting diets, which are a staple of the bodybuilding industry, wouldn't work very well.

There is this notion that anything above this 30 grams every whatever hours is bad for the body, or somehow useless. This is nonsense. The overconsumption of carbs is of far greater concern, as it is not the healthiest, and obviously not the most balanced eating approach.

When we look at macronutrient intake we also have to consider health, and not just scientific studies performed on folks doing leg extensions in a lab. (This is generally what they are, and the scientists rarely understand even the most basic of lifting principles such as beginner gains.)

My take home points are this:

1) Studies are rarely performed on people who train as hard as we do.
2) The overconsumption of carbs, or a very unbalanced diet, has been shown to be potentially unhealthy in the long run.

My advice is to eat a balanced diet rich in protein and fats, and to train hard. If you train hard and eat enough, there is no real need to get overly concerned with the minutea of diet. That's best saved for cutting fat.

There were times when I was 19, doing a 3 on, 1 off training approach, where I was literally eating non-stop all day and growing like a weed. I neither got fat, nor probably ate under 250 grams of protein per day.

A focus on training hard is of utmost importance. Do this, listen to your body and eat accordingly. The body will tell you a lot.

Pull14 10-13-2011 02:49 AM

Thinking of absorption rates and whatnot is in my opinion a waste of time. People have gotten stronger, leaner, or bigger without this knowledge for thousands of years (whether or not they were trying to). Treat protein as any other macro nutrient/calorie.

The concept of absorption when dealing with protein is to open ended for it to get you anywhere. You don't poo the remainders out if you over stepped the 20, 25, 30g "rule." Some bodies burn it for energy to fuel organs and to repair damaged tissue and other will store it as energy/fat. It depends on the metabolism of your body, your physical/mental streses and a bunch of other stuff and simply how much you consume v.s. the needs of your body.

BigTallOx 10-13-2011 08:15 AM


Originally Posted by mystro (Post 180057)
Read an article which stated that the body can only assimilate 20-25gms of protein per sitting.

I don't believe that.

Off Road 10-13-2011 09:16 AM

And did the article say how long a sitting is? Or how many sittings there are in a day? Or tell you the different absorption rates? Or how long food sits in the gut before it's digested?

mystro 10-13-2011 09:40 AM

And did the article say how long a sitting is? Or how many sittings there are in a da
Should have read book,How long is a sitting?i'd guess it would vary from one to another.Personally i don't believe it just wondering if i missed something.I started out 12 years ago 185lbs i'm 248 about 20% bf and i didn't do it with 25-30gms of protein,took plenty of groceries plenty.

ElementalVirago 10-13-2011 09:53 AM

I remember when I first started getting serious about lifting. I went to Wal-Mart and got some cheap ass tub of whey protein. I can say with 100% certainty that the majority of it got pooped out.

I'm saying this not only because I try to work poop into just about every conversation, but because I believe that if it's not a good quality protein, the body won't absorb it as well and it will just pass right on through.

May be relevant, may not be.

BendtheBar 10-13-2011 10:03 AM


Originally Posted by mystro (Post 180138)
Should have read book,How long is a sitting?i'd guess it would vary from one to another.Personally i don't believe it just wondering if i missed something.I started out 12 years ago 185lbs i'm 248 about 20% bf and i didn't do it with 25-30gms of protein,took plenty of groceries plenty.

I've read some information around that web that has stated the body does have the capability of assimilating at faster rates. I am no expert but if I recall correct the body runs more efficiently:

1) After periods of fasting.
2) After a period of hard work.
3) Upon waking.

Someone correct me if I am wrong.

Here are some quotes I found by the HST/Brian Haycock crew. Not sure of the validity, but they are good for discussion:


Speaking of high intakes of protein, people have been perpetuating the myth that you can only assimilate about 30 grams of protein at a time, making protein meals any greater than a 6 oz. chicken breast a waste. This is anything but true. For example, the digestibility of meat (i.e. beef, poultry, pork and fish) is about 97% efficient. If you eat 25 grams of beef, you will absorb into the blood stream 97% of the protein in that piece of meat.

If, on the other hand, you eat a 10 oz steak containing about 60 grams of protein, you will again digest and absorb 97% of the protein. If you could only assimilate 30 grams of protein at a time, why would researchers be using in excess of 40 grams of protein to stimulate muscle growth?1

Critics of high protein intakes may try to point out that increased protein intake only leads to increased protein oxidation. This is true, nevertheless, some researchers speculate that this increase in protein oxidation following high protein intakes may initiate something they call the "anabolic drive".13

The anabolic drive is characterized by hyperaminoacidemia, an increase in both protein synthesis and breakdown with an overall positive nitrogen balance. In animals, there is a correspondent increase in anabolic hormones such as IGF-1 and GH. Though this response is difficult to identify in humans, an increase in lean tissue accretion does occur with exaggerated protein intakes.14,15

The take home message is that, if you are going to maximize muscle growth you have to minimize muscle loss, and maximize protein synthesis. Research clearly shows this is accomplished with heavy training, adequate calories, and very importantly high protein consumption. This means that meals containing more than 30 grams of protein will be the norm. Not to worry, all that protein will certainly be used effectively by the body.

1. Tipton K., Ferrando A., Phillips S., Doyle, JR D., Wolfe R. Post exercise net protein synthesis in human muscle from orally administered amino acids. Am. J. Physiol. 276: E628-E634, 1999
13. Millward, D.J. Metabolic demands for amino acids and the human dietary requirement: Millward and Rivers (1988) revisited. J. Nutr. 128: 2563S-2576S, 1998
14. Fern EB, Bielinski RN, Schutz Y. Effects of exaggerated amino acid and protein supply in man. Experientia 1991 Feb 15;47(2):168-72

BendtheBar 10-13-2011 10:08 AM

This is from Layne Norton:


Bodybuildings Biggest Protein Myths Debunked (Layne Norton)

Myth: "You can only absorb 'X' grams of protein in one meal."

The real deal: Not only is this myth not rooted in any kind of fact, it's actually a misnomer in and of itself. Absorption refers to the amount of a certain substance that makes it into circulation (blood) from the digestive tract. The body will absorb a good portion of the protein you eat regardless of the amount of protein in the meal (though there's a limit to the percentage absorbed and it will vary between protein sources). What this myth actually refers to is protein/amino acid utilization. Specifically, what's the maximum amount of protein at a meal that will be used for muscle-building processes, and at what point does the amount of protein become excessive and the extra amino acids burned for energy rather than retained? At this point, researchers have no good answer to this question, but the answer probably depends on many various factors, including but not limited to:
- lean body mass
- length of time since last protein-containing meal
- amount of protein at previous meal
- type of protein source
- training state (Post-workout? Pre-workout? Resting?)
- total calories in the meal
- caloric balance

Although there's no definitive answer as to the maximum amount of protein that's beneficial at a meal, there's some research out there that is mildly helpful. Leucine, the amino acid that's an anabolic component of protein1 and is responsible for stimulating protein synthesis, was administered at different doses in rats to see what dose elicited the maximum protein synthetic response.2 The researchers found that the maximum beneficial dose of leucine was achieved at 0.68 grams of leucine per kilogram of bodyweight. This equates to about 62 grams of leucine in a 200-pound individual, which is an unrealistic amount to get from whole food. There are many problems with applying the absolute numbers from this study to a whole food meal in humans because of the differences in protein metabolism between rats and humans. In order to determine what level of leucine at a meal elicits the greatest anabolic response for the longest period of time more human studies will be required, but the research is moving in the right direction. While there's most definitely a maximum beneficial protein intake at a meal, no studies have directly addressed the subject and the number is likely to be influenced by various factors. So, pay no attention to Joe Dumbbell who says you can only absorb (insertgram amount) of protein at a meal, because he has no clue.

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