High-Protein Diet Plans: ​Does Too Much Protein Cause Constipation? by 30Seconds Health

High-Protein Diet Plans: ​Does Too Much Protein Cause Constipation?

Keto is one of the hottest health trends right now, with high-protein diets being all the rage. Cutting carbs and filling up on high-protein diets has produced remarkable weight loss and bodybuilding results for many people, but it is not without hazards and potential difficulties.

So does eating too much protein cause constipation? Yes, it can! The ordinary human body isn't acclimated to excessively high protein and low carbohydrate levels, which might confuse the system and have a variety of negative effects on general health.

Constipation is defined as a condition in which the feces are firm and difficult to pass. Because protein might raise your fluid requirements, make an additional effort to avoid dehydration. Fluid can also be obtained through various beverages, soups and high-water-content fruits and vegetables. To ensure that you are fulfilling your needs, bring a water bottle with you in the car or drink a full glass of water after each meal. Constipation may be avoided by eating enough fiber and drinking enough water.

Increasing your protein intake may help you maintain a healthy, active lifestyle. But constipation is unfortunately a common adverse effect of consuming more protein. If you're aiming to increase your protein intake, don't cut back on high-fiber fruits and vegetables. Nuts, tofu and beans are examples of vegetarian protein sources that are high in both protein and fiber. Drinking additional fluids can sometimes help relieve negative effects like constipation.

Why Does Consuming Too Much Protein Create Constipation?

A diet high in protein may help with either diarrhea or constipation. If you're experiencing constipation, it's quite possible that a food item you're not eating is the cause of the problem. Surprisingly, constipation is sometimes caused by antibiotics. People on diets high in protein may eat less fiber due to the fact that they're more focused on consuming animal proteins, which have zero fiber.

Fiber provides bulk to stools, dragging waste and water through the GI system. It's typically found in grains, vegetables and fruits. Because of this, the meals you consume may pass through your system faster. Fiber keeps the system flowing in the GI tract, which keeps the body in a good state, decreases bloating and removes any potential irritants.

Another thing to keep in mind is that protein powders and shakes might cause GI problems. Megan Robinson, a board-certified dietitian, says a lot of protein powders on the market are not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and their list of ingredients can be deceptive or confusing. Even in situations where they claim to be low-carb or sugar-free, "a lot of them comprise artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols, all of which are associated with constipation."

If you have a dairy or lactose sensitivity that can contribute to constipation, stay away from these types of protein shakes. Look for protein drinks that have been certified by NSF Certified Sport, which may not cause stomach upset.

How to Figure Out If You're Consuming Too Much Protein

The daily protein allowance is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. But in situations where you're engaging in any type of physical activity where you're doing more than the average person, you probably need a little bit more. For the moderately active woman, Robinson recommends 1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight. To figure out how much protein you need, you can multiply your weight in pounds by 2.2 and multiply by 2.2 to get kilograms. Divide your weight in pounds by 2.2 to get 68 kilos or 68 grams of protein.

Listen to your body if you're scared about going too far. Are you feeling angry, exhausted and dehydrated at a higher pace than usual? This could indicate that you're consuming too much protein and need to reduce your intake. Always consult your physician or a dietitian to help you create a diet plan that's ideal for you and your body.

Other Consequences of Consuming Too Much Protein

Aside from constipation, consuming too much protein may also have other consequences. Some of these include:

  • Weariness: Protein isn't an efficient generator of energy. If you consume a very high-protein diet, protein can be easily transformed to sugar for energy, but it may take a long time to complete digestion. So, if you eat a high-protein diet versus a moderate-carb, moderate-protein diet, you might not get the same amount of energy. That is a reason why mental fog and weariness are so common.
  • Weight Gain: When you're trying to shed weight and develop muscle mass by consuming a high-protein diet, it's easy to do the opposite and gain more weight. There are a lot more calories in fat than there are in a good carbohydrate with fiber.
  • Bad Breath: According to Robinson, this is rampant in individuals who are on the ketogenic diet. When the human body enters a state of ketosis, it creates major ketones (chemicals such as beta-hydroxybutyrate, acetone and acetoacetate), which can cause bad breath.

Comparing Protein Toxicity Vs. Protein Poisoning

Toxicity can arise when renal function is poor and the body is unable to process protein. This is not the same as protein toxicity.

Protein poisoning is caused by consuming too much protein without balancing out the nutrients with carbs and fat. Protein toxicity occurs when the kidneys do not function properly, resulting in a buildup of protein metabolic wastes. People with kidney illness who take more protein than their bodies can tolerate may be at risk of protein toxicity. Protein toxicity is an uncommon effect compared to constipation. However, because many diets promote high protein intake, it's something to keep in mind.

Speak with a registered dietitian if you have specific questions about how much of each macronutrient you need to support your current activity level and health demands. Your requirements will differ depending on a variety of circumstances.

Although protein is essential for proper function, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing, especially when other macronutrients are deficient.

Note: 30Seconds is a participant in the Amazon affiliate advertising program and this post contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a commission or fees if you make a purchase via those links. The content on 30Seconds.com is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information on this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider. The opinions or views expressed on 30Seconds.com do not necessarily represent those of 30Seconds or any of its employees, corporate partners or affiliates.

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Elisa Schmitz
This is fascinating. I did the keto diet a few years ago and did see some weight loss. But it's not something I could maintain for very long, and it sounds like, as always, moderation and balance are key. Thanks for this info!
Donna John
It is fascinating, Elisa Schmitz, 30Seconds . I know so many people on the keto diet. Wonder if they're all walking around constipated? Going to pass this information on to them!
Elisa Schmitz
I'm sure many of them are walking around constipated and wondering what to do about it, Donna John ! They want the benefits of the weight loss, without the side effects of constipation. This article should help!!
Definitely had constipation while doing the keto diet. Wish I’d read this first.
Have been curious about trying keto so thanks for the heads up!
Romik Yeghnazary
Thank You For Sharing
Albert Fouerti
Thankyou for Sharing Yummy Recipe with us

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