EFSA Suggests Daily EU Protein Intake of 0.83 g/kg

February 13, 2012

At the request of the European Commission, EFSA has established Population Reference Intakes for protein consumption.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA; Parma, Italy) has agreed upon a Population Reference Intake (PRI) for protein, following a request from the European Commission for new EU nutrient intake recommendations for protein and other major nutrients.

The EFSA panel established a PRI for protein of 0.83 g/kg of body weight daily for normal adults, with slightly adjusted recommendations for key population subgroups outlined.

 

  • Adults: 0.83 g/kg daily

  • Infants, children, and adolescents: between 0.83 g and 1.31 g/kg of body weight per day, depending on age

  • Pregnant women: additional daily intake of 1 g, 9 g, and 28 g for the first, second, and third trimesters respectively

  • Breast-feeding women: additional daily intake of 19 g during first 6 months of lactation and 13 g per day thereafter

 

According to EFSA’s dietary surveys, European adult men consume between 67 and 114 g/day or protein while European women consume between 59 to 102 g/day of protein. Regarding protein intake in the higher range, EFSA said, “Intakes up to twice the PRI are regularly consumed from mixed diets by some physically active and healthy adults in Europe and are considered safe.”

The EFSA panel did not publish a Daily Recommended Value (DRV) for protein because it believes there is not yet enough data to make that estimate. A DRV for protein could establish ideal intake levels for managing protein-related health factors, including optimal bone mineral density.

Additional omissions from the protein assessment-due to insufficient data-included a Tolerable Upper Intake Level for protein and individual amino acid requirements (dietary amino acids are consumed as protein, not as individual nutrients).