Protein for a healthy life

02/02/2023
Shaun Waso
Diabetes | Easy Weight Loss | Inflammation | Low Carb | Protein | What To Eat

Proteins are essential for human health as they play many critical roles in the body.

They build and repair tissues, produce hormones and enzymes, maintain fluid balance, support the immune system, and facilitate metabolic processes. 

Additionally, proteins are a source of energy and can help maintain a healthy weight. A lack of protein in the diet can lead to various health problems. So it is important to include protein-rich foods in your diet. Protein for a healthy life.

Sources of Protein

Protein-rich foods include:

  • Meat, poultry, and fish
  • Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Beans, lentils, and legumes
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Soy products like tofu and tempeh
  • Whole grains and quinoa
  • Peanut butter and other nut butters

Including a variety of these foods in your diet can help you meet your protein needs and maintain good health.

Amino Acids

Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. They are organic compounds made up of a carbon skeleton, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. There are 20 different types of amino acids, each with its own unique structure. They join together to form long chains that create a specific protein. Nine of these amino acids are essential because the body cannot produce them on its own. You must get them from your diet. The combination and sequence of amino acids determine the specific function of a protein.

The best sources of essential amino acids include:

  • Meat, poultry, and fish
  • Dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Soy products like tofu and tempeh

These are “complete” protein sources because they contain all nine essential amino acids in adequate amounts.

Plant-based sources of protein, such as beans, legumes, and grains, can also provide essential amino acids. But they are often low in one or more of the essential amino acids. To ensure adequate intake of all essential amino acids, it’s recommended to eat a variety of protein-rich foods.

Best sources of essential amino acids

Animal-based protein sources are complete proteins, meaning they contain all the essential amino acids required for human health. Amino acids from animal sources are also completely bio-available to the body. This means your body adequately absorbs amino acids from animal sources. The best sources of animal-based amino acids include:

  • Meat: Beef, pork, lamb, and veal are all rich sources of protein and essential amino acids.
  • Poultry: Chicken and turkey are excellent sources of protein and essential amino acids.
  • Fish: Fish such as salmon, tuna, and halibut are high in protein and essential amino acids. It also provides omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to have heart health benefits.
  • Eggs: Eggs are one of the best sources of protein and essential amino acids, and also provide several vitamins and minerals.
  • Dairy products: Milk, cheese, and yogurt are good sources of protein and essential amino acids.  It also provides calcium and other important nutrients.

Animal vs Plant-based amino acids

Animal-based protein sources, such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products, are considered complete proteins.  They contain all the essential amino acids in sufficient amounts.

Plant-based protein sources, such as beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, and whole grains, contain incomplete proteins.  They do not contain all the essential amino acids in enough amounts. However, by consuming a large variety of plant-based protein sources, it is possible to get all the essential amino acids.

How much protein should you eat?

“There are a lot of confusing recommendations about protein. Part of the confusion, there is not a single protein number for every person. The specific amount of protein you need depends on your age, body weight, and health status. Get enough protein for a healthy life.

We’ve created a protein calculator to help you figure out exactly what your daily protein intake should be. We have also included some helpful information about why optimizing your protein intake is so important.”  – Don Layman

Check out the calculator HERE

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