Protein Protein Protein – Part 4

By Serene Pearl

Other Articles in the series: Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four

Read more on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) Facebook page (Australia).

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My last few posts have discussed the pros and cons of protein powders. I hope you didn’t miss the last three posts on this (scroll down our page wall to find them). Another question that comes up – won’t I become overly acidic, and ruin my kidney’s with too much protein?

The rise of the popular low fat /vegetarian diet era in the 1980’s and 90’s informed us that high amounts of dietary protein (especially animal based protein) is dangerous to our kidneys.

Modern research proves this wrong. Protein does not damage healthy kidneys even when consumed in amounts higher than what would be considered normal. It is only people with certain kidney diseases and those with compromised renal function that cannot handle a lot of protein. This is due to their kidneys not functioning properly, not due to the protein itself. Healthy kidneys filter out the waste products of protein metabolism just like they do with slews of other things because is what they were created to do.

Saying that protein is bad for your kidney’s is like saying eggs, peanuts or healthy sprouted grain bread are bad for every healthy individual just because those allergic to these foods may have severe reactions to them.


A Recent study revealed that when bodybuilders consumed up to 1.3 grams of protein per pound of body weight, kidney function was not impaired. (Poortmans and Dellalieux 2000). Dr. Clay Hyght a Doctor of Chiropractic and health and fitness expert backs this up with his personal experience. He is a big guy who works out hard with lots of muscle. He lives on a diet where he consumes 375 grams of protein a day – an enormous amount! In a transcribed radio interview, he talks about how his kidneys are in perfect condition after many years eating this way.

In an older study conducted with female rats kidney function actually seemed to be improved with a high protein diet. (Sterck et al. 1992).Other studies showed protein intakes even up to 1.27 grams per pound of body weight did not cause kidney damage.

Let’s say you are 150 pounds. While our THM plan is protein centered, eating the protein rich meals and snacks we advise will not generally bring your daily protein intake to even 150 grams which would only be one 1 gram per body weight. Some days it’s possible you might eat that much protein (not likely) but there won’t be harm in it. Shake off your worries about this! I consumed whey protein almost daily in my last two pregnancies and these were my healthiest pregnancies ever. Some rat studies have revealed that when rats were given a full 80% protein diet for long periods of time, none of the rats showed any signs of kidney damage (Zaragoza et al. 1987).


I like the way Dr. Clay Hyght explains protein in one simple sentence. He says, “Protein builds stuff!” It doesn’t just build muscles. It builds hair, skin, nails, tendons, ligaments, blood plasma, organ tissue and almost 2000 enzymes. Higher protein diets also revealed higher bone mineral content instead of depletion. (Cooper et al. 1996, Freudenheim et al. 1986).

The resistant exercise we advise and ample protein intake together leads to even better increased bone mass. This is so important for us Mamas as we get older. Our Trim Healthy plan includes ample protein, not these huge amounts many body builders consume but enough for many testimonies from our Mamas saying, “My hair is getting thicker.” or “My skin is smoothing out, I have less cellulite on my thighs!”

A few original studies that contributed to the scare about high protein consumption demonstrated that when dietary protein was raised to 140-225g per day, excess calcium was lost through the urine at a faster rate than normal. (Hegsted et al. 1991). While this seems like an opposite result than the other research I am citing here, in these studies, calcium and phosphorus intake was strictly restricted and not allowed to increase in proportion to the level of protein intake.

Dietary whole food proteins contain calcium and phosphorus and protein supplements that are lacking these minerals are now usually fortified to correct this imbalance. Thankfully, The CFM whey isolate I recommend is NATURALLY high in calcium and contains a good amount of phosphorus so there is no issue for concern.

In a natural scenario of high protein intake without calcium and phosphorus restrictions, there is actually a positive calcium balance and there are no adverse effects on bone calcium content. (Hegsted et al. 1991, Zigler and Filer, Jr 1996 National Academy of Sciences National Research Council 1991).

Of course, I’ m not recommending a diet imbalanced with any macronutrient. We certainly don’t have to consume upwards of 200 grams of protein per day. But I do want to alleviate the erroneous fears fed to us by health gurus that spout vegetarian “cleaner colons through less animal protein” dogma. Eating plans like ours that lean heavily on protein foods also have a strong metabolism boosting effect due to the thermic influence of protein and its ability to prevent hunger. Protein based metabolic increase is double that of carbs or fat! But thankfully you also get to eat carbs and lots of fat as a Trim Healthy Mama. We are not about leaving anything out.


Yes there are some protein foods that naturally leave an acidic ash in the digestive system, but that is a good thing. It is a part of keeping your body in a perfect PH balance. Being too alkaline is not healthy either and you need acidic foods. Why? Because God made them for us and called them “good.” Easy answer.

And we Trim Healthy Mamas do not need to worry about being too acidic even if there was a reason for it, as our diet is rich in glucomannan/ konjac root meals and snacks. The Konjac root is known as the second most alkaline food on earth. Our diet is also filled with lots of leafy greens and non-starchy veggies which are extremely alkaline. Perfect balance!

Soon, I will post up my final article on this protein subject. I intend to talk about reviewing some of my extreme purist ways in my past and I have not forgotten that some of you want to hear my thoughts on soy lecithin which is in some of the CFM whey isolates I recommend.

Other Articles in the series: Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four

Read more on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) Facebook page (Australia).


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