P.S. : This article was written by me in November 2021. You can send your comments in the comments section below for any suggestions.

Consuming Protein Like a Pro: Accessibility, Limits, Recommendations and My Results

  Protein got its name from “proteios”, a Greek word, and means “primary” or “first position” [1]. People use this word because proteins are one of the most important primary sources for living creatures. For example, in addition to their structural role, proteins used producing hormones, enzymes, immunity cells, and blood cells [2]. Therefore, getting enough protein every day is essential for our health. However, unfortunately, these days, all prices, including the foods which contain high amounts of protein, are increasing [3]. This essay will discuss protein-rich foods, their accessibility and ingredients. In the end, I will discuss my calculations and comments on my protein intake.

  To start with, for many people today in Turkey, finding protein-rich foods for reachable prices are hard. For example, according to Figure 1, the most protein-rich foods are meats [4]. However, meat is the most expensive common food in Turkey per gram [5]. Besides the meats, to take enough nutrients, one Turkish person has to spend nearly 1300 TL per month [5]. This number means a family with four people has to pay 5200 TL for food only [5]. However, the minimum wage in Turkey is 4253,4 TL shows it is not enough for many people to buy enough food to feed their family. On the other hand, some people try to convince others to consume less meat and more plant-based proteins [6]. Because meats have some harmful effects on both people’s and the world’s health, people can consume more legumes and nuts to get enough protein from this viewpoint. Furthermore, as can be seen from both Figure 2 and my calculations on Figure 4, plants are usually cheaper than meat per protein per gram. To sum up, although finding proteins is not easy, especially when we think of meats and nuts, if we try to get our protein from vegetables, the situation is not the worst. I do not support the current food prices but, as we cannot change them quickly and have to survive, we should do our research and try to do our best.

  Secondly, when we compared lipid levels with protein levels, we can see in Figure 3 that protein-rich foods also contain high fat and energy [4]. However, they mostly have less than one gram of carbohydrate [7]. These low carbohydrate levels of most protein-rich foods make them one of the first choices for people who want to consume less carbohydrate.

  In the end, to learn if my daily protein intake is adequate or not, I note down the foods I eat daily. Then, I calculated my daily protein intake using food protein data from USDA FoodData Central [7]. According to my calculations, chicken meat is my most significant protein source, followed by bread and beef, respectively. To be honest, I did not wait for that bread to be one of my biggest protein suppliers. I consume on average 112 grams of protein per day. You can check my detailed calculations from Figure 4. When I checked using USDA DRI Calculator [8], the calculator suggested taking at least 52 grams of protein per day. The website warned me taking less protein than recommendations can cause severe diseases. On the other hand, there is no optimal or upper limit suggested. Some research shows that physically active people can consume up to 2 grams per kg [8]. I am 185 cm and 65 kg. And I do sport regularly; therefore, as a result of my research, I found that my protein intake is proper.

  In conclusion, I discussed protein-rich foods, their reachability, nutrients, and recommended intake. First, because the national and global problems cause increases in prices, people have hard times reaching food, especially protein-rich foods, which are generally expensive. However, It seems that, even though it is not ideal for many, people can use plant-based nutrition to get enough protein, according to many experts. Secondly, I showed that protein-rich foods are usually fat and energy-rich compared to their carbohydrate levels. Finally, I discussed the results of my calculations. And I see that fortunately, I take enough protein every day. I hope, in the future, every people can easily reach food, and there will be no nutrient deficiency problem.


⦁ VICKERY, H B. “The origin of the word protein.” The Yale journal of biology and medicine vol. 22,5 (1950): 387-93.

⦁ “What Are Proteins and What Is Their Function in the Body?” Eufic, 16 Dec. 2019, https://www.eufic.org/en/whats-in-food/article/what-are-proteins-and-what-is-their-function-in-the-body.

⦁ Silver, Katie. “Inflation: Global Food Prices Hit Fresh 10-Year High, Un Says.” BBC News, BBC, 5 Nov. 2021, https://www.bbc.com/news/business-59172665.

⦁ Schönfeldt, HC, et al. “The Impact of Animal Source Food Products on Human Nutrition and Health.” South African Journal of Animal Science, vol. 43, no. 3, 2014, p. 394., https://doi.org/10.4314/sajas.v43i3.11.

⦁ “Food Prices in Turkey.” Cost of Living, 2 Jan. 2022, https://www.numbeo.com/food-prices/country_result.jsp?country=Turkey.

⦁ Streit, Lizzie. “6 Benefits of Not Eating Meat (or at Least Less of It).” Healthline, Healthline Media, 27 Aug. 2021, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-not-eating-meat.

⦁ “Fooddata Central.” FoodData Central, https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/.

⦁ Wu, Guoyao. “Dietary protein intake and human health.” Food & function vol. 7,3 (2016): 1251-65. doi:10.1039/c5fo01530h