Protein: The Building Blocks of Our Bodies

Protein: The Building Blocks of Our Bodies

Protein: The Building Blocks of Our Bodies

Protein Please!

Not only is protein consumption an essential part of our energy requirements, but the building blocks of protein serve various functions in the human body you might not be aware of!

Animal products as well as non-animal products such as legumes, nuts, and seeds provide the body with a natural source of vitamins including vitamin B, vitamin E, iron, zinc, and magnesium!

Vitamin B is essential for the release of energy, the signaling between cells in the nervous system, and formation of new red blood cells.  Iron helps carry oxygen throughout the blood to muscles.  Zinc boosts the body’s immune system to fight of disease.  Magnesium helps to formulate bone and release energy from muscles when necessary.

Food that contains protein also supplies the foundation for and provides compounds necessary to repair bones, blood, muscles, cartilage, and skin. For example, when a child scrapes his arm and the body needs to create new skin, the nitrogen from the protein provides building blocks rebuild the skin tissue.

In addition, omega fatty acids found in seafood products can help reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

With all this in mind, it is important to stay within the recommended guidelines of daily intake.

Overconsumption  can lead to weight gain, bone deterioration, kidney failure, and ammonia build up in the blood (which can have detrimental effects on the brain if too high).

The recommended daily average intake of protein is currently 0.8 g per kilogram of body weight or roughly 54-70 g for males and 40-60 g for females.  This amounts to 2-3 ounces of protein a day for a sedentary person.  But did you know the average American consumes between 50 -175 grams of protein a day!? So be weary of your intake!

LEAN ANIMAL SOURCES

  • Chicken breast
  • Turkey breast
  • Egg whites
  • Lean meat cuts
  • Shellfish
  • Fish

NON-ANIMAL SOURCES

  • Quinoa
  • Lentils
  • Dried peas
  • Nuts
  • Nut butters
  • Tofu
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Raw Vegetables
  • Bread

By: Lauren Paletz

For more information on the benefits and serving sizes CLICK HERE

 

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