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Protein Calculator

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Calculator Description

Protein DRI calculator is based on the Dietary reference intakes (DRI) report from the food and nutrition board, institue of medicine of the national academies. Protein DRI calculator will calculate the EAR, RDA and DRI for protein as gram per day. The DRI is calcualted based on AMDR by selecting the middle point of the range.

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Protein EAR and RDA by age groups

The following table provided EAR and RDA for protein in the unit of g/kg/d that means per day protein in grams for per kilogram body weight for different age groups. The EAR is an estimated average requirement value. The RDA is the recommended diatery allowance that is the EAR plus two times estimated standard deviation so that it will cover more than 97% of people in the age group. The RDA should be considered as the minimum daily intakes of protein. The recommended daily intakes is calculated based on the Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Ranges (AMDR). For example, for an adult with weight of 65kg, the RDA is 0.80 g/kg/d, that means the recommended minimum protein intakes for this adult is 0.80 * 65 = 52 gram per day. The RDA can be considered as the daily requirement. The DRI that is calcualted based on AMDR normally exceeds the RDA.
Age GroupProtein EAR (g/kg/d)Protein RDA (g/kg/d)
Infant 0-6 months 1.521.52
Infant 7-12 months 1.01.2
1-3 years 0.87 1.05
4-13 years 0.76 0.95
Boys 14–18 years0.73 0.85
Girls 14–18 years 0.71 0.85
Men 19 years over0.66 0.80
Women 19 years over 0.66 0.80
Pregnancy 0.88 1.1
Lactation 1.05 1.3

Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Ranges (Percent of Energy)

The daily dietary reference intakes (DRI) value for protein is calculated based on the following AMDR table. The middle point of the range in the age group is used to calculate daily DRI for Protein.

Children 1-3 yChildren 4-18 yAdults
MacronutrientRangeSelectionRangeSelectionRangeSelection
Fat30%-40%35%25%-35%30%20%-35%27.5%
Carbohydrate45%-65%52.5%45%-65%50%45%-65%50%
Protein5%-20%12.5%10%-30%20%10%-35%22.5%

Additional Macronutrient Recommendations

MacronutrientRecommendation
Dietary cholesterol As low as possible while consuming a nutritionally adequate diet
Trans fatty acids As low as possible while consuming a nutritionally adequate diet
Saturated fatty acids As low as possible while consuming a nutritionally adequate diet
Added sugars Limit to no more than 25% of total energy

Protein Quality

Different sources of protein vary widely in their chemical composition as well as in their nutritional value. The quality of a source of protein is an expression of its ability to provide the nitrogen and amino acid requirements for growth, maintenance, and repair. In practice, protein quality is principally determined by two factors: digestibility and the amino acid composition of the protein in question. In food as opposed to relatively pure protein, the contribution of all of the indispensable amino acids to the total nitrogen content of the food has to be considered in assessing the overall protein quality of the diet.

Digestibility (as estimated by nitrogen excretion) is usually determined by measuring the fecal nitrogen (NFP) in individuals consuming the specific nitrogen source and subtracting the fecal nitrogen values obtained when a protein-free diet is given (NF0). This value is then subtracted from the total nitrogen intake (NI) and expressed as a proportion of the nitrogen intake. The true digestibility for many common foods such as milk, cereals, and soy and other legumes exceeds 90 percent.

The second and generally more important factor that influences the nutritional value of a protein source is the relative content and metabolic availability of the individual indispensable amino acids.Thus, the “limiting amino acid” will determine the nutritional value of the total nitrogen or protein in the diet. In recent years, the amino acid requirement values for humans have been used to develop reference amino acid patterns for purposes of evaluating the quality of food proteins or their capacity to efficiently meet both the nitrogen and indispensable amino acid requirements of the individual.

Food Sources for Protein

Protein from animal sources such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, milk, cheese, and yogurt provide all nine indispensable amino acids, and for this reason are referred to as “complete proteins.” Proteins from plants, legumes, grains, nuts, seeds, and vegetables tend to be deficient in one or more of the indispensable amino acids and are called “incomplete proteins.”

Food SourceProtein (g)
3 oz lean meat or poultry 25
3 oz fish 20
1 cup soybeans 20
1 cup yogurt 8
1 cup milk 8
1 egg 6
1 oz cheese 6
1 cup legumes 15
1 serving cereals, grains, nuts, or vegetables 2