Chocolate contains modest amounts of protein. A small 1 oz serving of dark chocolate contains 1.74g of protein. Milk and white chocolate contains less protein, though!
How much protein do we need a day?
Most people who follow a sedentary life need about 0.8g of protein per kg (2.2 lbs) of body weight a day.
Active people require more protein, though. Actually, the recommended daily intake of protein for people with minimal, moderate, and intense physical activity is 1.0g, 1.3g, and 1.6g per kg (2.2 lbs) of body weight, respectively.[1,2]
Thus, an 80 kg (177 lbs) person with moderate physical activity should get about 100g of protein a day. In contrast, a 59 kg (130 lbs) person with minimal activity needs only 47-59g of protein.
It’s estimated that the average protein intake in the U.S. is 14-16% of total energy intake. This is more than enough. The U.S. Dietary Guidelines state that adults should take at least 10% of the daily calories from protein.
Much higher doses of protein are considered pretty safe. But, we shouldn’t consume more than 2g of protein per kg body weight for a long time. Chronic extremely high dosages may lead to digestive, renal, and vascular abnormalities. Above all, people with chronic kidney disease should consult their physician before increasing protein intake.
As a rule of thumb, healthy people who follow a well-balanced diet can safely increase the daily protein intake by 20%.
How much protein in dark chocolate?
Dark chocolate with at least 60% cocoa solids contains moderate amounts of protein. It contains about 6.1g of protein per 100g, while a small serving of 1 oz contains 1.74g of protein.
What’s the protein content of milk or white chocolate?
Milk and white chocolate contains even less protein. Milk chocolate contains only 1g, while white chocolate contains about 1.6g of protein per a 1 oz serving, respectively.
Keep in mind that milk and white chocolates are packed with sugar. If you want to consume less sugar, you should prefer dark chocolate.
Should I depend on chocolate to boost protein intake?
Certainly, dark chocolate is good for our health, as it has a superior nutritional value. Above all, it’s particularly high in iron! Moreover, dark chocolate contains decent amounts of copper, potassium, magnesium, chromium, manganese, calcium, fiber, and many more health-promoting nutrients! In fact, a small serving of dark chocolate could help you lose weight.
But, we can’t depend on chocolate for getting high amounts of protein. After all, it’s pretty high in calories. Just a small serving has about 160 calories!
Hence, if you love chocolate, and you’re an active person who wants to lose weight, you could consume chocolate protein bars. They contain much more protein per calorie. As a rule of thumb, a chocolate protein bar provides about 20g of protein and has fewer than 200 calories! You’ll find a wide variety of protein chocolate bars on Amazon.
But, most people don’t need these. If you follow a healthy, well-balanced diet, you’ll probably get more than enough protein. Only very active people may benefit from products containing extra protein.
Common foods high in protein
Certainly, meat, poultry, fish, dairy, and eggs are high in protein. Moreover, they contain high-quality, complete protein. Animal products contain all essential amino acids.
But, we shouldn’t rely on them for protein. There are plenty of plant-based foods high in protein. Beans, nuts, seeds, whole-grains, and vegetables are excellent dietary sources of protein as well. In fact, most people could get more than enough protein following a healthy plant-based diet!
Most noteworthy, animal products contain high amounts of saturated fatty acid. High intakes of this type of fat have been linked to elevated cholesterol and increased risk of heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, we shouldn’t consume more than 13g a day!