Most people are lacking Protein in their diets (there should be a balance of protein, carbs and fat in your diet…40/40/20 or 40/30/30). When your body is getting protein it functions better because it supports the lean muscle mass which will burn the fat. When you cut down on calories and eat only carbs, these carbs are broken down into simple sugars and stored as fat.
To discern how much protein you need personally, your body requires 1 gram of protein for every 4 pounds of body weight per day…then divide it between your 5-6 meals per day for your healthy ratio of protein per meal. If you are a very active adult, you may require more protein per meal.
Protein is made up of 23 essential amino acids, 8 of which adult bodies cannot manufacture on their own and therefore we must get it from food.
Next to water, protein is the most plentiful substance in the body and accounts for 12-15% of our total weight. Protein is needed for almost every vital function of the body and makes up the essential building blocks of the living cells of the body (the amino acids are the building blocks that make up protein).
It is a misconception that protein only comes from animal sources. There are many excellent plant sources that supply us with protein. A few examples of how to mix the plant proteins to make them a complete protein are: combine whole grains with beans, mix legumes and grains, eat corn with beans
Other sources of protein: egg whites, almonds, cashews, fish, soybeans. You also get protein from seeds, natural brown rice, rye, oats, millet, wheat and beans.
Protein from Meat: The leanest meat sources are chicken and turkey (turkey is actually leaner than chicken). A lean cut of steak or London Broil once or twice a month is good for iron and especially if you are working out this source of protein is important for the amino acid building blocks that your lean muscles require to grow. Eliminate completely high fat meats such as beef, pork and ham.
Protein Deficiency: A lack of protein affects the hair, nails, skin, growth and tissue development. The mental and physical development of children is affected when protein is lacking. In adults, they suffer a loss of stamina, are less resistant to infection and slower to heal and they become weak and may suffer from mental depression.
Too Much Protein: Diets too high in protein will also have side effects such as dehydration because the body has to work hard to excrete the wasted nitrogen that the body has accumulated. If the protein is not used by the body, it will convert and be stored as fat.
Start adding protein to your daily nutrition plan and watch your energy levels increase and your immune system will be boosted as well. Plan to succeed by making changes in your daily habits!
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