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The Powerhouse that is Protein

The bricks and mortar of the macronutrients family, protein is a staple must-have in your daily dietary intake.

A complex collection of various molecules, proteins ensure that your body uses them accurately to generate new hormones and replace skin. It also allows your hair to grow, and form the foundation for keeping your muscles, bones, and organs in a healthy state.

Our body is in a constant state of breaking down and building up. Like with every structure, wear and tear occurs, so regular renovation work is essential. When we use our bodies, it is the chemical processes that come with the dissection of protein (called amino acids) where the stomach and small intestines absorb the protein before flowing towards mission control (the liver).

It is here where the liver decides where its ready-to-go protein molecules must head to.

Just like with fats and carbohydrates, protein is present in almost all minimally processed and whole foods. While generally standard diets in most Western and Asian countries are not protein deficient, the amount of protein needed largely depends on overall movement and general body composition goals.

There are indeed standards on how much protein one can take, depending on your goals and activity. Yet, we always need protein for keeping our internal processes and external beauty and health in check.

As you may guess, adding a good dose of protein to your daily meal is almost a given when you’re injured and when you grow older. On the latter, growing older comes with some physical deterioration. Increasing protein intake may balance this loss out depending on one’s health conditions.

One of the other great benefits, aside from keeping your body healthy, is that protein has a more filling feeling. It can be a contributor to weight loss. Eating sufficient protein can be the tipping point to feel more satisfied without bingeing out.

During your dietary journey, playing around with one’s carb and fat intake is not an issue, depending on the goal. Playing around with average grams of protein intake every day should remain stable. I may be able to guide you in suggesting recommendable amounts of protein-based foods in your life, which simply becomes a part of your dietary plan.

Unlike carbs, there is no real difference between “better” proteins and “lesser” proteins. Aiming for naturally sourced protein remains a priority without going full out on the vast number of protein supplements in the market. Unless access to decent protein sources is limited to the recommended intake, protein supplements may be considered.

It is strongly advised to inform any dietician or health coach when issues with certain protein sources are not inside your environment or when protein allergies may be a part of your life.

I also recommend to seek professional medical help when it affects your dietary intake or physical discomfort. The solution often does not lie in protein shakes or any supplements to increase your protein intake.

Calories from protein affect your brain, your appetite control center, so you are more satiated and satisfied. | Mark Hyman
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