Only 35 Percent of Americans Know How Much Protein They Need

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CLIF Builder’s, the great tasting high-protein bar, revealed the results of a new survey today showing that most Americans are unsure of how much protein they need on a daily basis, even though they know other essential health and fitness facts like how much water to drink and how often they should exercise.

Just 35 percent of Americans understand their protein needs, according to a nationwide phone survey of 1,000 people ages 18 and over conducted recently by CLIF Builder’s and Kelton Research. Key nutrition knowledge about protein lags far behind Americans’ awareness of other basic health and fitness concepts. For example, the survey discovered that more than twice as many Americans understand how often they should work out (76 percent) or their ideal weight range (69 percent). To help people learn about their individual protein needs, CLIF Builder’s has created a guide to protein and nutrition, including an interactive protein calculator, available at CLIFBuilders.com.

The survey also uncovered widespread misconceptions about the benefits of a post-workout snack containing a mix of protein and carbohydrates. After a workout, eating protein and carbohydrates together is the ultimate one-two punch for total body recovery, explained Ron Mathews, a leading personal trainer and CLIF Builder’s ambassador. Post-workout protein repairs muscles, while carbohydrates replenish a body’s storehouse of energy. However, 43 percent of Americans believe that eating carbohydrates after a workout will cancel the work they have just done, and 89 percent reach for a protein-rich snack first, without considering also replenishing carbohydrates.

“As a professional trainer, I educate my clients to look for a protein bar like CLIF Builder’s that not only includes protein to build muscle, but also high-quality carbohydrates,” Mathews said. “Carbs translate to energy, and whether you’re lifting weights or running hills, carb-based energy is what makes it happen.”

Nearly half of those surveyed said nutritious ingredients are an important factor in their selection of protein snacks. Those respondents said they don’t want their protein snacks to contain trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols.

“Sometimes what’s not in your food is just as important as what is,” says Tara DelloIacono Thies, RD. and nutrition strategist for Clif Bar & Company. “You won’t find in CLIF Builder’s ingredients like artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors and sugar alcohols that provide zero energy, as they don’t contribute to muscle performance and total body fitness.”

For more information about Clif Bar & Company, visit clifbar.com.