The question I have is calorie balance vs protein balance
Given that we need to reach our maintenance calorie in order to stay the same weight, and we need to hit the daily protein goals to stimulate muscle protein synthesis, how would the two work together?
If I am in a calorie deficit and hitting my protein goals, will I still gain muscle and lose fat? (not possible according to most)
If I am hitting caloric surplus and not hitting protein goals, will I gain fat and lose muscle/ not gain muscle?
If I am in a calorie balance and not hitting my protein goal, will I lose muscle/not gain muscle and gain fat?
Assuming both the maintenance calorie and protein goal are accurate and the deficit/ surplus is significant; and knowing that in real world things and the body is more complex, but in theory/ principle how the two would work together.
Thanks so much for the detailed reply. Huge fan of your work and learnt so much from you.
So could I understand it this way – your calorie intake relatives to your maintenance calorie determines your absolute weight; while your protein intake ratio (giving adequate muscle stimulus and recovery) determines the composition of muscle vs fat ratio of the weight gain/ weight loss?
So calorie deficit + high protein vs low protein -> more fat loss & more muscle maintenance/ possible muscle gain; and calorie surplus + high protein vs low protein -> less fat gain & higher muscle gain?
Regarding the decision filter that you mention, this question stems from the fact that I work an office job which regularly exceeds 15+ hours work per day and hitting consistent protein and calorie goal (and meal prep) is not always possible. So I would like to know the full spectrum/ picture so I could make the best food selection given the limited food options I have around my work place – huge variance in the calorie & protein value.