It’s time to set the record straight. While protein is important to help maintain and build muscle mass, consuming more protein as part of a healthy diet is NOT going to make you bulk up like the hulk.
Unlike carbohydrates and fat, the body can’t physically store protein. Any protein that is consumed in the diet is going to either be used by the body, stored as fat or excreted – not sent directly to your muscles in a Popeye-like fashion.
Protein is a macronutrient providing energy and calories, just like carbohydrate and fat. Essentially, consuming anything in excess whether that be protein, carbohydrate or fat is what is going to make someone bulk up – and not in a good way. You certainly can have too much of a good thing! But as part of a balanced diet, consuming more protein can actually help you lean out. Higher protein diets have in fact been shown to help boost metabolism, increase satiety keeping you fuller for longer, and help with fat loss while maintaining muscle lean mass too.
If you’re looking to lose fat, tone, strengthen or build muscle, having a balanced diet with adequate protein, alongside being physically active is a great place to start.