ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Dangers of Too Much Protein

Updated on September 16, 2018
Filip Stojkovski profile image

I'm passionately interested in the arts, especially drawing and painting. I work as a professional web developer.

Proteins are one of the most important nutrients for the human body. They are considered to be macro-nutrients, which means the body needs fairly large amounts of them. The body uses protein to build tissues, but also hormones and other chemicals. Proteins are one of the most popular nutrients when it comes to maintaining a strong and fit physique and a healthy diet. And that makes total sense. Without protein the body can’t repair muscle tissue effectively. That’s why bodybuilders are eating large amounts of it. However, the dangers of too much protein are perhaps not as often discussed.

How Much Protein Do We Generally Need?

Most people who are moderately active or not very active need between 50 to 62 grams of protein per day. However, people who are more active, are recovering from injuries, or who are seeking to build muscle need more than just the daily requirement. It is estimated that the required amount of protein in order to build muscle is 1 gram per pound of body weight.

But, Is It Possible to Consume Too Much of It?

It is difficult to consume too much protein by eating solely normal foods, because the amount of the food would have to be very large and it’s hard for most people to eat large amounts of protein-rich foods. But when people are using protein powders and supplements, sometimes they may easily consume large amounts of protein that are not optimal for their body’s health and functioning.

Are There Any Dangers of Too Much Protein?

The answer is yes. There are a few health hazards associated with over-consumption of protein.

1. Kidney Problems

Eating excessive amounts of protein can be hard on your kidneys. The reason behind that is the nitrogen that occurs in the amino acid that make up the proteins. When you eat too much protein your kidneys have to deal with a lot of nitrogen and do extra work to get rid of it\flush it out. The problem occurs when you consistently over-consume protein and cause your kidneys to work on overdrive. If you do this long term this can even damage your kidneys.

2. A Built up of Ketones in Your Blood

Oftentimes, when people eat a lot of protein, they don’t eat enough carbohydrates. When the body doesn't get enough energy from carbohydrates (glucose) it enters a state called ketosis. Ketosis is a state in which the body burns fat for energy and makes ketones in the process. In a normal state the body doesn't make ketones and it controls how much fat it burns. A state of ketosis can be dangerous if too much ketones build up in your body because they change the chemical balance of the blood. Shorts periods of ketosis are usually not harmful, but longer periods can be. Also ketosis can cause you to have a really bad breath, as a result of the bad smell of the ketones.

3.Weight Gain

Proteins provide 4 calories per gram. Although they are not dense with calories as fats, eating a lot of them can make it easier for you to eat more calories than you burn, and store the excess as fat. When you consume more protein than your body needs the excess protein will be stored as fat, even if you eat a low-fat and a low carbs diet.

4. Digestion Problems

A diet who consists mostly of protein may lack nutrients, such as fiber, that contribute to healthy digestion. Also your stomach enzymes are not able to handle too much protein at one time so your digestion might slow down as a result. That can lead to stomach discomfort and constipation. And it’s not healthy, nor enjoyable to be frequently constipated and deal with poor digestion.

5. Dehydration

Your body needs a lot of water when you consume too much protein. So you might find yourself feeling constantly thirsty. This happens because of the nitrogen waste that comes with the amino acids that make up the proteins. The body basically needs more water to flush the nitrogen waste out. That is why experts recommend that people who eat high protein diets, should drink a lot of water, even if they do not feel very thirsty.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)