I’ve often wondered how much protein I should be consuming. Being paleo and eating a good share of protein, I still wonder If I am eating enough of it or to much of it for that matter.  We all know that once you turn 40 it becomes harder to loose the pounds and easier to gain them.  The food that we ate in our 20’s and 30’s now sticks to us like glue. And inevitably sticking right to our midsection and ass. The good news is that the solution to a slim, firm body at 40 plus years is right in our refrigerators.

Research has shown that when combined with a little regular exercise, what you eat and when you eat it are your metabolic secret weapon for building muscle mass, which is the body’s prime calorie-burning tissue and the key to driving your metabolism.

We all already have an idea of how to keep calories and fat in check, but most of us just choose to ignore this.  But what about the protein? We need to add protein rich foods which will allow our body to go to work and break it down into smaller particles called amino acids.  The amino acids enter your bloodstream and are then absorbed by your muscle tissue and other cells.  Once the amino acids end up in your muscles, your body starts put them back together.  This is called muscle-protein synthesis and it is the process your body uses to build and maintain muscle mass.

Since going paleo, Protein has been the primary focus for me.  I have protein with every meal I eat, whether it is bacon for breakfast, chicken on a salad for lunch or steak tips  for dinner. I  take what ever that protein is and start to pair it with the veggies and maybe sweet  potato.  And of course  I implement good fats like avocado, coconut oil, coconut milk or Kerry gold butter.

But many researchers say that we need more protein than we think we do.  The recommendation for those of us over 40 by the  RDA is 0.80g  or 37 g per pound of body weight of protein per kilogram of body-weight, but several studies have found that 1- 1.2 g may be more protective against age-related muscle loss. You can find a calculated here at About.com

Mark Daily Apple has a great article with resourceful information depending on how active you are.

Examples of Metabolism-Boosting foods ( mix and match these)

  • Avocado
  • Asparagus
  • Tree nuts
  • Spinach
  • Eggs
  • Fish and Shellfish
  • Poultry and Pork
  • Beef

If you eat protein and stay active you can maintain muscle mass.  But if you are trying to really build new muscle mass the key to increasing your metabolism would be strength training too. And all you would need is 2 days a week doing muscle training.

My goal as I enter further and further into my 40’s is to be as healthy and lean as I can possibly get myself.  Living a long full life with my husband and our children is so important to me.