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Busting the Myth: Can Too Much Protein Harm Your Arteries?

Let's talk about a hot topic that's been making waves lately: the idea that loading up on protein could be bad news for your arteries. It's got everyone talking, but before you start fretting over your protein shakes, let's dig into the real story behind these headlines.


So, here's the scoop: a recent study got people buzzing with claims that eating more than 22 percent of your daily calories from protein could wreak havoc on your arteries and drive atherosclerosis, which is the buildup of fats, cholesterol and other substances in and on the artery walls. Sounds pretty alarming, right? But hold on a second – let's break it down.


This study that got everyone worked up? It was actually done on mice, not humans. And not just any mice – these little guys had a genetic predisposition to develop artery problems. They’re called “ApoE knockout mice” which means “Atherosclerosis-prone apolipoprotein E-deficient”. So they used mice that are genetically modified to be prone to atherosclerosis.What the researchers found was that when these genetically modified mice were fed a ton of protein, they got the condition that they where genetically modified to be prone to get. Shocker. But here's the kicker: it's a big leap to say that genetically modified, atherosclerosis-prone mice getting atherosclerosis means that we humans will get this condition from eating too much protein.If fact, there have meta-analysis’s that show that’s not the case.


Sure, it's intriguing stuff, but we can't jump to conclusions based on faulty mouse experiments alone. We need solid evidence from studies involving real people to know what's what. And guess what? When they did similar studies with actual humans, the results show that high protein consumption does not negatively affect cardiovascular health.


So, what's the takeaway from all this? Well, first off, don't believe everything you read in the headlines. Sometimes, the truth is a lot less dramatic than it's made out to be. And when it comes to nutrition, it's all about balance.


Instead of stressing over hitting some magic protein number, focus on eating a variety of foods that make you feel good. Include quality protein sources like Rock Solid® Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein if you enjoy them, but don't go overboard. Your body is pretty smart – listen to what it's telling you, and you'll be just fine.




how to take protein

In a nutshell, there's no need to panic about protein wrecking your arteries. Enjoy your food, stay curious about the science, and remember that a balanced approach is always the way to go. Keep rocking that healthy lifestyle!



“Identification of a leucine-mediated threshold effect governing macrophage mTOR signaling and cardiovascular risk” Xiangyu Zhang et al. https://www.nature.com/articles/s42255-024-00984-2


“The Impact of High Protein Diets on Cardiovascular Outcomes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies” Mantzouranis E et al.


”The Apoe−/− mouse model: a suitable model to study cardiovascular and respiratory diseases in the context of cigarette smoke exposure and harm reduction” Giuseppe Lo Sasso et al.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4875735/

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