The Importance of Protein

According to the dictionary,  protein is any class of nitrogenous organic compounds which have large molecules composed of one or more long chains of amino acids and are an essential part of all living organisms, especially as structural components of body tissues such as muscle, hair, etc., and as enzymes and antibodies.Like carbohydrates and fat, protein is a “macronutrient,” meaning that you need relatively large amounts of it to stay healthy. (Vitamins and minerals, which you only need in small quantities, are called “micronutrients.”)Unlike carbohydrates and fat, your body does not store protein, so it has no reservoir to draw from when you’re running low. Protein bars and shakes are a great way to supplement your diet to ensure you’re getting the right amount of protein.Here are four good reasons:
  • It is a component of every cell in your body. In fact, hair and nails are mostly made of protein.
  • Your body uses it to build and repair tissue.
  • You need it to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals.
  • It is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
Different Forms of ProteinProtein comes from a variety of sources, including meat, milk, fish, soy, and eggs, as well as beans, legumes, and nut butters. When proteins are digested, they leave behind amino acids, which the human body needs.Whey, a high quality protein source naturally found in milk, is a complete protein and contains all of the amino acids your body needs. In general, proteins derived from animal sources (i.e. milk, eggs & meat) are complete, but your body’s ability to use the protein varies.Why should you care about making sure you get enough protein?Benefits of a Protein Rich DietConsuming high-protein foods has many benefits, including:
  • Speeding recovery after exercise
  • Reducing muscle loss
  • Building lean muscle
  • Helping you maintain a healthy weight
  • Curbing hunger
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