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How much protein can we absorb from one meal?


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I've been researching this issue -  reading online articles, scientific studies, watching videos etc. and it seems that the maximum amount of 30 g of protein per meal may not actually be a myth but a real thing. It''s obviously not accurate for everyone, the older you are, the more protein you require, and your activity level (athletes can absorb more) and protein source play an important role as well, but a range of 15 g to 40 g of protein seems to encapsulate all possible variables and correctly show how much protein is able to be absorbed from one meal. Here is one very interesting study that deals with this: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/23571534_Ingested_protein_dose_response_of_muscle_and_albumin_protein_synthesis_after_resistance_exercise_in_young_men

It suggests that 20 g of protein (they used egg protein, 20 g of egg protein contains 1.8 g of leucine) is enough for young men to maximally stimulate muscle protein synthesis and any amount in excess of that would result in irreversible oxidation, activating mTOR and possibly accelerating aging.

What are your thoughts on this? This might be especially important for people on the OMAD diet, who consume all of their daily protein in one meal. I'm myself currently eating OMAD and may switch to 2MAD solely because of this protein absorption issue.

Edited by Lucius
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Lucius, the considerations illustrated in that article are valid only after meals composed of whole egg protein. Various proteins behave in different ways. 20 grams of protein from spinach, mushrooms, or other vegetables, for example, are totally different from 20 grams of hydrolyzed whey. Whey powder results in a leucine peak in the blood, casein does not, because its digestion is much slower.

Also, that was a leg exercise in young men, in older men and after a whole body workout 40 grams may be required. It also depends from if and what you ate before exercise. 

So, the variables are very numerous as you stated at the beginning of your post. 

Since many people here are on the OMAD diet and are suffering from no protein deficiency, probably it has not a significant detrimental effect on protein absorption.

In my personal opinion, 2 meals are better because the stomach is not overloaded by a single high-volume meal.



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