4 Reasons To Eat More Protein


Complete Proteins

Are you consuming enough protein? For the majority of you the answer is no and I’ll explain the 4 reasons why you need more protein in your diet. There are so many different types of food, protein shakes, bars, powders these day. It’s hard to know which actually provide an adequate amount or quality of protein and which supplements are just sugar and fairy dust these days with the amount of health misinformation out numbering the actual health facts.

1. What Is Protein, and Why is It Important?

First, lets start with what protein is, and why it’s so important to get sufficient amounts of it in even if you are not a frequent visitor to the gym. The building blocks of muscle are protein and the building blocks of muscles are amino acids. They are used for many functions such as building/repairing body tissue/structures, synthesis of your hormones, and enzymes. There are two main classes of protein: essential and non-essential amino acids. Essential amino acids cannot be manufactured by the body or can but in insufficient amounts. Non-essential amino acids are called non, due to the fact the body is able to manufacture them from dietary nitrogen as well as from fragments of carbohydrates and fats.

2. Not All Protein is Created Equal!

While most of you eat protein in almost every meal, not all protein is equal. What does that mean? There are two types of proteins: complete proteins and incomplete proteins. A complete protein is any food or dietary supplement that supplies all of the essential amino acids in the appropriate ratios. An incomplete protein on the other hand lacks in one or more of the essential amino acids the body requires. If one or more essential acids are missing or there is an inadequate amount at the time of digestion your body’s protein will be reduced.

Types of complete protein sources are: Whole egg, meat and poultry, fish, milk and milk products, quinoa, and whey protein. If you are a vegetarian or vegan there are a list food combinations you can eat together to ensure you are consuming all of the essential amino acids. These combinations are rice and beans, peanut butter on whole wheat bread, yogurt and granola, oatmeal with milk.

3. Why does cutting your caloric and carbohydrate intake actual hurt you more then help?

I’ve come to learn that most of us hurt our metabolism and weight loss programs more than help it when drastically reducing our carbohydrate and caloric intake in addition to increasing our activity levels. The reason for this is due to your body’s constant need for energy for our brain and nervous system. When cutting your calorie or carbohydrate intake too low, the body has no choice but to utilize your protein intake for immediate energy needs then using it for building muscle and other essential functions.

4. How much protein should you consume?

This is a component of peoples diet that most struggle with. The Recommended Dietary Allowance for sedentary adults is 0.4 grams per pound. According the Center for Disease Control, it’s recommended that 10–35% of your daily calories come from protein. These percentages vary depending on what your goals are. For instance, a strength athlete requires more muscle and in turn more protein to gain muscle mass while endurance athletes don’t require as much lean body mass, so the required amount of protein needed is less. No matter what the percentage amounts to at the end of the day, your protein numbers should fall within the recommended ranges below depending on the sources/types of protein, weight, and goals according to the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).

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