Midwest Dairy Association

Protein

Although most Americans meet their protein needs, many are seeking new options for sources of protein in their diets, and low-fat and fat-free dairy foods can help meet this need. However, low-fat and fat-free milk and milk products are not seen as a top source of protein by many Americans, so there is an opportunity to educate on dairy’s inherent high-quality protein to help people get more diversity in their diets when it comes to protein.

The Institute of Medicine recommends that 10 to 35 percent of total daily calories should come from protein. That’s about 50 to 175 grams per day for a 2,000 calorie diet. Note: Calorie needs differ per individual, see choosemyplate.gov for guidelines.*

  • Although most people meet minimum protein requirements (i.e., the low end of this recommended range), many may benefit from a moderately higher protein intake (i.e., the midlevel of this recommended range) such as active individuals and older adults.*
  • Some experts suggest people may benefit from consuming approximately 20 to 30 grams of high-quality protein at each meal.*

To help improve public awareness that low-fat and fat-free milk and milk products are not only a source of calcium, but also a source of protein and other essential nutrients, National Dairy Council has developed new protein education resources for health and wellness professionals to use with patients, clients and the public to help increase  awareness of dairy’s high-quality protein.  From helping build muscle with exercise to providing easy and tasty options at meals, high-quality protein foods, such as dairy foods, can help Americans meet their health and wellness goals.

* Please remember to check with your doctor or registered dietitian before making changes to your diet and/or exercise routine.




Additional Resources

Dairy Delivers Protein for Active Lifestyles

Milk, cheese, yogurt and whey are convenient and cost-effective ways to power up with protein throughout the day.

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Dairy Can Help You Meet Your Protein Needs

The Institute of Medicine recommends that 10 to 35 percent of total daily calories should come from protein. That’s about 50 to 175 grams per day if you normally eat about 2,000 calories each day.

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Small Steps Can Help Ensure Your Fitness Goals

Strong and healthy muscles and bones support you every day, and you can support them by eating nutrient-rich foods and getting regular exercise. Small steps could help you reap benefits you may not realize you can gain.

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Muscle Matters for Your Health at Any Age

No matter what age you are, it’s important to establish good nutrition, lifestyle and physical activity habits to help pave a path for strong muscles and bones.

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Protein Can Help Each Day

Are you getting the most mileage from your food choices? If you lead a busy lifestyle, like most Americans, you will likely appreciate help getting the most nutrition and benefits from your meals and snacks. Protein is an important part of optimizing nutrition throughout the day.

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Make Your Protein Work Harder for You

Although most Americans meet their protein needs, some people may benefit from diets higher in protein such as athletes, aging adults and those trying to manage their weight. This fact sheet will help you learn how to maximize the protein in your diet.

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Vegetarian, Flexitarian or Just Trying to Eat Healthier?

Are you one of many health-conscious eaters seeking new information to make healthier choices? This may include looking for real, fresh and natural foods or finding easy and tasty options for a variety of diets.

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