What is Nitrogen Balance?
Let’s begin with Nitrogen. Nitrogen is the most abundant element in the Earth’s atmosphere, comprising about 78% of the air we breathe and it’s the 4th most abundant element by mass in our bodies behind oxygen, carbon and hydrogen. In our bodies, nitrogen is predominantly incorporated into the chemical structure of amino acids and thus proteins. This is why dietary protein intake (natural source of nitrogen) is critical to achieving the appropriate balance of nitrogen in our bodies.
Nitrogen balance is simply the net result of subtracting nitrogen loss (bodily usage/excretion) from nitrogen intake (dietary protein consumption).
A positive nitrogen balance can lead to growth, given the larger availability of protein. A negative result can lead to muscle tissue loss, as seen with improper nutrition or even disease.
It looks like a simple equation, but understanding some of the details behind what our bodies utilize protein for is important. The average adult ingests about 80g of protein per day with their diet. Our bodies utilize or consume just about all that protein in the formation of sweat, shedding skin, hair loss, formation of digestive enzymes, intestinal cell wall replacement and mucus generation – basically just living day to day. In order to grow, there needs to be more protein consumed than spent, and that’s why the typical recommended daily intake of protein provided by the government (0.8g protein/kg) doesn’t apply to highly active individuals or those desiring to pack on muscle mass.
The term ‘anabolic’ is often associated with steroids, but its true meaning is describing a state of growth – or the build-up of complex molecules like muscle tissue from smaller components. Whereas ‘catabolic’ is the opposite, a state of breaking down larger molecules into smaller components, usually for use as energy. For those of us looking to increase our muscle mass, staying in an anabolic state more often than a catabolic state is critical to net growth and to do that, maintaining a positive nitrogen balance is key!
For the physically active adult, the recommended daily intake of protein is about double that of the sedentary individual. Every person is different and it depends on if you are involved in more endurance vs. strength building activities, but sticking to a range of approximately 1.4-2 grams of protein per kg of body mass will propel most people into a positive nitrogen balance. This translates to about 125-180 grams of protein for the 200lb individual (and more of course for larger people), which can be difficult to achieve through food intake alone. Chicken breast is one of the most protein rich meats, as an example a 4oz cooked breast contains about 35g of protein, so 5 chicken breasts would be required to hit 180g per day.
Supplementing Your Protein
A supplement by definition is a product used to complete or enhance the diet. I emphasize this because the focus of any proper diet should be food. Most of your dietary protein should come from meat, fish, poultry and eggs. However, getting all your protein from whole food is not always practical or convenient, especially if you have to eat 6 or more times a day to get your required intake. For individuals looking to grow protein supplements can be necessary to fulfill the necessary quota on protein intake.
N-Pro – Everything You Want In A Protein Supplement
If you are looking for the optimal protein powder to exploit your full potential during growth and recovery, then you need to use the right blend of protein sources. Different types of proteins have varying rates of digestion and absorption. By masterfully blending fast, medium and slow digesting proteins together, an ideal balance of enhanced growth and muscle recovery can be achieved both rapidly post workout as well as over a sustained period of many hours.
N-PRO is the epitome of a high quality designer protein blend. It utilizes 6 different forms of whole protein formulated for rapid, intermediate and sustained delivery of muscle building fuel. Cross-flow, cold-processed and microfiltered, these high quality and high biological value proteins will provide hours of sustained ammunition for enhanced muscle protein generation.
The Benefits of the Protein Blend:
1) Protein Blends promote a sustained positive nitrogen balance;
2) Protein Blends trigger higher levels of muscle protein synthesis, and
3) Protein Blends offer a prolonged duration of amino acid absorption – and thus muscle growth and recovery.
Combine these benefits of the carefully crafted blend of high quality proteins with nothing but the highest standard of flavor decadence and you get N-PRO. No added amino acids, maltodextrin or fatty creamers; no gluten and no banned substances; just 26 grams of delicious protein for you to N-Joy and is designed to N-Hance your gains!
Nicholas Rupcich, PhD
VP & Chief Scientific Officer