Perfecting Your Protein Intake

Perfecting Your Protein Intake

Protein has been a hot topic for a while now. We know that protein is essential for countless functions throughout the body, but how much should you be eating? Where should you get protein from? Is too much protein dangerous for your health? And what about protein bars and shakes?

The word protein itself comes from the Greek protos meaning “first”, demonstrating it’s integral role in human health. Protein is needed for building and maintaining muscles, bone, skin and hair. It’s required to make enzymes and hormones and it’s essential for a healthy functioning immune system. Too little protein in our diet can not only compromise our health, it can leave us feeling constantly hungry and struggling to feel satisfied after meals as well as craving sweet and starchy foods.

Speaking to my clients and friends, I know that there is a lot of confusion around protein. Some women worry that increasing their protein intake whilst exercising will make them bulky (girls – unless you’re genetically quite unique, it won’t). I come across men with the attitude of ‘the more the better’ – but often their excessive protein intake is having a negative impact on their digestive function and is simply not sustainable.

I wrote this post as a simple, easy-to-implement guide to optimising your protein intake. However, it is important to bear in mind that different circumstances can alter your protein needs so if you’re exercising a lot or have a specific health condition or goal, your needs may differ.

Here are my top tips for perfecting your protein intake:


Recommended amounts are typically given as an amount of grams per kg / lb of body weight. (Note that this is based on ideal body weight, not overweight weight.)

The RDA for protein is a minimum of 0.8g per kg body weight per day, however it’s recognised that this is the minimum required to prevent deficiency and is not necessarily an optimal amount. Much of the research into protein requirements recommend that averagely active women consume 1.2g protein per kg body weight per day and that men consume 1.5g protein per kg body weight per day.

To put this into context, a 60kg woman should be aiming for 72g protein per day. An average sized egg contains 6g protein, half a cup of lentils provides 9g protein and a tin of tuna contains around 30g protein. It can be helpful to log your diet on an app like MyFitnessPal which tells you how much protein foods contain and can give you an idea of how much you’re eating in a typical day.


Instead of loading your daily intake of protein into one big meal, space it out over the day. Having a palm sized portion at each main meal is a good start. As with most nutrients, the body can only effectively break down and use so much as once so little and often is the key.


When we think of protein, we often associate it with meat. Whilst meat is a good source of protein, it’s not the only source and it’s good to vary where you get your protein from. If you eat meat make sure that it’s organic or at least traditionally reared (grass fed with beef). Wild fish, free range / organic eggs, seafood, pulses and tofu are also good sources.


Protein shakes and bars can be a useful way of adding easy to absorb protein into our diets. They are invaluable for vegans and vegetarians. That said, it’s important to choose good quality products. Avoid protein powders and shakes with added sugars and artificial sweetners, flavours and colours. My personal favourites are Pulsin’s Brown Rice Protein (as tasteless as protein powders come and great for mixing into smoothies), Nature’s Plus Ketoslim (vanilla flavour and tasty to have alone, also contains added nutrients equivalent to taking a multivitamin) and SunWarrior (an acquired taste but a good quality, complete vegan protein powder). My favourite ‘clean’ protein bars are also from Pulsin’ – especially the Vanilla and Chocolate Chip.

In the past there has been concern that a high protein diet is bad for our health, particularly the health of the kidneys. Too much or too little of anything isn’t good – even too much water can kill you! As usual, the key here is moderation. In one review of studies, researchers analysed the evidence available on protein intake and concluded that: ‘protein restriction may be appropriate for treatment of existing kidney disease but there is no significant evidence for a negative effect of high protein intakes on kidney function in healthy persons’.

I hope you find this guide useful. If you’d like further help with optimising your diet and working out how much protein meets your needs, please do get in touch.


Sarah has worked with hundreds of clients over the past decade to help them live in a healthy body that they feel confident in.
Sarah spent a large part of her teens and 20’s as a professional dancer battling with orthorexia and an unhealthy relationship with food and her body. This created a desire to understand the human body more so she could finally cut through the confusion and end the cycle of yoyo dieting. This fuelled her passion to help other women do the same.


Sarah May specialises in supporting women who are struggling to lose weight due to underlying health issues. She’s helped many women manage their weight during and after the menopause, as well as clients with thyroid disease and immune system dysfunction. Sarah May loves food and sharing healthy recipes with her clients. Her aim is to ensure that clients don’t feel deprived and instead, achieve their weight loss and health goals in a positive and sustainable way.


To enquire about working with Sarah, please contact us.



Ailsa is one of our most experienced practitioners. She specialises in helping clients to lose weight, develop a healthy relationship with food and finally feel comfortable in their skin. Ailsa’s mission is for everyone she works with to enjoy the journey and that working with a nutritionist should not be a punishment, but your access to a new possibility.


Ailsa is not only an experienced weight loss nutritionist, she is also a skilled coach. She helps our clients overcome emotional eating, destructive habits and self-sabotaging behaviours that have prevented successful weight loss in the past. Ailsa has spent years in clinic working with clients who have experienced yo-yo dieting and have discovered that long term weight loss is not just about eating less until you can stand it no longer.


Working with Ailsa you will be comprehensively supported, not only in improving your nutrition and lifestyle, but also your eating habits and your relationship with food. When you work on all these elements together, the results can be truly astonishing.


To enquire about working with Ailsa, please contact us.

Test Nikki is our Practice Manager, managing our team of practitioners and heading up the day-to-day running of the business. Nikki is involved in the strategic development of our practice, coming from a strong business background in town planning. A Florida girl, Nikki relocated to the UK in 2014 with her husband and two children.



Nikki is our Practice Manager, managing our team of practitioners and heading up the day-to-day running of th clinic.


Nikki is involved in the strategic development of our practice, coming from a strong business background in town planning.


A Florida girl, Nikki relocated to the UK in 2014 with her husband and two children.


Stéphanie is a skilled nutritional therapist and functional medicine practitioner with additional training in eating disorders, disordered eating and obesity. She believes that working towards both physiological and mental health is key in achieving optimum wellbeing.


Stéphanie’s personal experience of emotional eating and the ongoing struggle to find the right support led her to combine the science of nutrition with behavioural coaching to motivate and empower her clients. She specialises in helping people who struggle with their weight and their relationship with food. She helps them develop a healthier and more peaceful relationship with food and their bodies.


To enquire about working with Stéphanie, please contact us.


Inna is passionate about supporting women on their journey to improved health and wellbeing. She believes that the solution to effective weight loss does not lie in ever more restrictive diets, but a more sophisticated approach that optimises health and vitality, as well as promoting effective weight loss.


Working with Inna you will benefit from her in-depth knowledge of female health and hormones. She will support you in developing a healthy diet, lifestyle and mindset that ensures you reach your ideal weight and maintain it in the years to come.


Inna is passionate about food with a wide repertoire of delicious healthy recipes and meal ideas to ensure your weight loss journey is as enjoyable as possible!


To enquire about working with Inna, please contact us.



Ania is a firm believer that improving your health and losing weight should be a positive, empowering journey, not one centred around deprivation.


After being diagnosed with two autoimmune conditions in her twenties, Ania spent several years educating herself on the power of food and nutrition. She put it all into practise and changed her diet and lifestyle, reversing her endometriosis and thyroid disease. After experiencing such a significant improvement in her health, Ania had a big desire to help others. She embarked on a four year journey to study nutrition, graduating from the Institute for Optimum Nutrition with distinction.


Ania specialises in autoimmunity and works with clients who have underlying health issues preventing successful weight loss. Her expertise enables her to successfully support our clients with conditions such as hypothyroidsm (underactive thyroid), PCOS and diabetes. 


To enquire about working with Ania, please contact us.

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