Excess protein, fat or carbohydrates - which is more detrimental to proper nutrition?

Excess protein, fat or carbohydrates - which is more detrimental to proper nutrition?

Excess protein, fat or carbohydrates - which is more detrimental to proper nutrition?
Excess protein, fat or carbohydrates - which is more detrimental to proper nutrition?

While considering the harm of eating too much protein, fat or carbohydrates, it is important to maintain a holistic approach to nutrition. For example, if an excessive amount of protein is consumed, it is probably due to a large amount of animal fat - mainly meat and cheese.

Similarly, it is difficult to consume too much pure fat - usually ultra-processed foods that contain significant amounts of salt, as well as high glycemic carbohydrates along with saturated fats.

//  Exceeding KBZHU - which is worse?

Addiction to one of the macronutrients always has a negative effect on the functioning of the body. For example, a lack of protein leads to loss of muscle mass and disruption of DNA replication, a lack of fat reduces hormone production, and a lack of carbohydrates shuts down fiber.

On the other hand, high-protein diets are associated with increased ammonia production and increased osmotic pressure, high-fat diets are associated with increased blood triglycerides, and high-carbohydrate diets are associated with impaired metabolic rates. insulin processes.

In practice, it is important to remember that if the daily diet is within the recommended daily calorie content, then it is more correct to take into account not the proportions of BJU, but the food consumed daily - it is obvious that the sources of carbohydrates are extremely different from each other.

The main enemy of health

Sugar can undoubtedly be considered a major enemy of health. The recommended daily intake of sugar is between 40 and 60 g¹, depending on gender, weight and level of human activity. In addition, the figure includes added sugar used as an ingredient in food production.

On average, Russians consume 110 grams of sugar a day, which is why every fifth person has prediabetes. Among other things, excess blood glucose and impaired insulin production lead to sodium retention in the body, increasing the damage from excessive salt intake and provoking hypertension.

Excess protein - the consequences

Excess protein - the consequences

Most often, dietary norms recommend 1-2.5 g of protein per day for each kg of body weight. For a person weighing 80 kg and with a daily requirement of 3000 kcal, this is about 80-200 g of protein per day. In terms of meat, this is about 400-1000 g per day. In this case, for example, the norms of the Ministry of Health are reduced to 200 g of meat and 60 g of fish per day³.

That is, it is necessary to consider not so much the harm of protein as such, as excessive consumption of meat - which is associated with an increased risk of developing colorectal cancers (especially if processed meat products are used).

Plasma osmotic pressure

If excess protein in the diet is obtained through sports nutrition (for example, when gaining muscle mass), it is important to remember that amino acids are also absorbed and enter the bloodstream. We are talking about the osmotic pressure they exert on the vessels.

To simplify, we can say that an excess of protein can make the blood more difficult to transport through the arteries - which will have direct damage to the cardiovascular system, as well as the work of the brain.

Although the human body processes proteins extremely well (humans are a protein form of life), there will be a maximum limit for each amino acid that the body can process painlessly.

What is the harm of ammonia?

Ammonia is a by-product of the metabolism of the amino acids that make up the protein, which is always present in the blood in relatively low concentrations.

Exceeding its norm by 2-3 times leads to toxic damage to the body in general and the liver in particular. With an excess of ammonia, blood circulation is disrupted and the body's ability to renew tissues decreases.

Excess fat - what affects?

Excess fat - what affects?

Typical dietary guidelines recommend 30-40% of daily calories in the form of fat - however, with a traditional Mediterranean diet, the proportion can be increased to 50% while maintaining a healthy diet.

But, as with everything else, the type of fat plays a role. Saturated animal fats,  found in fatty meats, lard, milk, cheese and eggs, cause the most damage  . Their use should not exceed 40% of the total fat intake (and about 15-25% of the caloric content of the whole diet).

In terms of grams, at a rate of 2000 kcal, we are talking about 700-800 kcal in the form of all types of fat (75-90 g) and not more than 300-350 kcal in the form of saturated fat (35 -45 g) - about 200 g cheese per day. Exceeding this figure increases the level of triglycerides in the blood and leads to the development of cardiovascular disease.

The most harmful nutrient

Leaving aside excess calories (which leads to weight gain, regardless of the proportions of BJU), excess carbohydrates have the worst effect on health. In addition, fast carbohydrates in the form of sugar and fructose added to ultra-processed foods - from yogurts and pastries to ice cream and pizza.

A small slice of pizza with cheese covers 20% of the body's needs for saturated fat, 25% of sodium (ie salt) and 10% of sugar. Obviously, we are not talking about an excess of any particular nutrient - but about the dangers of fast food and processed foods with ulbras in general.

In conclusion, we will mention trans fats - if you exceed 2% of calories, they can affect the brain and worsen metabolism. In practice, this is a tablespoon of margarine - often used in baked goods.

***

If the calorie content of the daily diet is maintained within the norm, then excess sugar (which means, first of all, added sugar) will have the worst effect on health. This is followed by processed meats and fast food (excess saturated fat, salt and trans fats).

Data sources:

  1. "Dietary Guidelines for Americans", Edition 2020-2025,  pdf
  2. In 2018, the Russians exceeded the level of sugar consumption twice,  link
  3. Recommendations of the Ministry of Health for rational norms of food consumption,  connection