Thursday, December 2, 2010

Daily Protein Requirements

The plot thickens! My surgeon says to plan on a goal of 60 grams of protein per day following surgery. In the short-term liquid diet phase following the operation, this will be accomplished with protein shakes. My favorite brand has 30 grams of protein per shake. That will take care of at least the first two weeks following my GSV. But what's a girl to do after that? I am really hoping not to rely on protein shakes: I like food, and I want to be able to enjoy it for the rest of my life. But I will take the recommendations on how to make the most of my surgery and weight loss/maintenance very seriously, too.

Your body needs a lot of protein! This page on says that "the standard method used by nutritionists to estimate our minimum daily protein requirement is to multiply the body weight in kilograms by .8, or weight in pounds by .37." Uhhh, according to that formula, I should be taking in upwards of 90 grams of protein a day.

Ninety grams of protein is:
- 39 oz, or 2.5 bricks of tofu; or
- 4.5 cups of beans; or
- 15 eggs; or
- 2.25 cans of tuna; or
- 14 oz of fish; or
- you get the idea.

Funny, I have never really thought about how much protein I take in during a given day. As we saw from yesterday's lunch, my meal selection naturally tends to be a mix of a little of everything, including good sources of protein.

However - when you think about the "meal the size of the palm of your hand" and "60+ grams of protein a day," I can see it will get a little complicated! Protein shakes, protein powder and protein bullets are going to have to round out my diet, I believe.

Where I'm a little concerned right now is with my daughter. She's eleven, and has a BMI of probably 61. OMG. That brought tears to my eyes just typing it. My family's health is in crisis mode. Plus, she insists on being vegetarian, so getting protein into her...well, it's hard. She won't eat fish, she isn't wild about tofu, eggs or beans...

Ahh, I'm kind of having a reality crisis just writing this post. Wow. Thinking about my protein needs and how I'm going to manage them pre- and post- surgery has led to a real bucket of cold water on my head about just how terribly I'm managing this whole issue for my family.

And you were here, live, to see it. Now back to our regular programming, already in progress. Yikes.

Much thinking to do. This is why I write - it is therapeutic, cathartic, and seems to be the only way I can think. Doh.

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