Did you know that most of your hormones are made of amino acids which are derived from protein that you eat? Hormones control so much of what our body feels and does – our moods and emotions, sleep cycles, hunger and cravings, metabolism, sexual arousal, growth, puberty and reproduction, immunity and so much more. Because of this its so important that you are eating enough good quality protein each day. And for your children who are growing and developing so fast. Did I mention “moody teenager”.
Sadly we tend to eat most of our protein at night with dinner. However our body can only absorb 20-30g of protein per meal. That leaves us quite short as breakfast and lunch tend to be carb loaded. As a result we really need to eat around 20g of good quality protein per meal, or 3 times per day. 1 glass of milk has 8g of protein. 1 large egg has 6g.
So how much protein do we need?
Below are Australian Health guidelines (athletes need a lot more)
Women: 0.75g/kg (ie 60kg = 45g/day)
Men: 0.84 g/kg
Pregnant and breastfeeling women, or women over 70yrs: 1 g/kg
Children 1-3yrs: 14g/day
Children 4-8yrs: 20g/day
Children 9-13yrs : 35-40g / day
Adolescents 14-18yrs: 45-65g/day (girls/ boys)
A tip would be to make sure your kids are getting enough dairy per day (milk, cheese) to ensure they are healthy, happy and meeting their growth needs.