Why Do We Need Proteins In Our Body

Why You Should Eat Protein

Why do our bodies need protein?

Protein deficiency syndromes are a leading cause of death in children under five in poor, underdeveloped countries. Protein deficiency can cause swelling, fatigue, skin problems, irritability, muscle wasting, and eventual death from infection. A severe form of protein malnutrition is called kwashiorkor. This is characterized by potbelly stomachs relating to an imbalance of osmotic solutions. You can see an example pictured to the right. The long-term health consequences of high-protein diets have not been adequately studied. As with any nutrient, protein must be eaten in proper amounts. Moderation and variety are key strategies for achieving a healthy diet and need to be considered when optimizing protein intake. Eat proteins in moderation, at least 10 percent of the calories you take in and not more than 35 percent. A simple calculation for protein intake is to take your weight in kilograms and multiply it by 0.8 to get the total grams of protein needed for a normal healthy adult each day based on the RDA. For example, if you weigh 165 lbs, we can convert it to kg by dividing by 2.2 165 lbs / 2.2= 75 kg. If you weigh 75 kg and protein recommendations are 0.8 g/kg, we can do the math 75 kg x 0.8 = 60 g of protein per day based on recommendations. Too little protein impairs bodily functions, and too much may lead to chronic disease. Protein deficiency is not a concern for most Americans as protein consumption is typically greater than need on a daily basis.

How Much Protein Do I Need

The National Academy of Medicine recommends that adults get a minimum of 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight per day, or just over 7 grams for every 20 pounds of body weight.

  • For a 140-pound person, that means about 50 grams of protein each day.
  • For a 200-pound person, that means about 70 grams of protein each day.

The National Academy of Medicine also sets a wide range for acceptable protein intakeanywhere from 10% to 35% of calories each day. Beyond that, theres relatively little solid information on the ideal amount of protein in the diet or the healthiest target for calories contributed by protein. In an analysis conducted at Harvard among more than 130,000 men and women who were followed for up to 32 years, the percentage of calories from total protein intake was not related to overall mortality or to specific causes of death. However, the source of protein was important.

Its important to note that millions of people worldwide, especially young children, dont get enough protein due to food insecurity. The effects of protein deficiency and malnutrition range in severity from growth failure and loss of muscle mass to decreased immunity, weakening of the heart and respiratory system, and death.

What Does Protein Do For Your Body

Proteins are essential to the human body. They are one of the building blocks of body tissues and can be used as a fuel source.


The most essential and defining characteristic of protein from a nutritional standpoint is its amino acid composition. There are 9 essential amino acids which humans must obtain from their diet in order to prevent protein malnutrition and resulting death.

Asides from water , proteins are the most abundant kind of molecules in the body. It is found in all cells and is the major structural component of all cells in the body , especially muscle.

Protein is a nutrient needed by the human body for growth and maintenance.Proteins are also used in membranes such as glycoproteins. When broken down into amino acids , they are used as precursors to nucleic acids , co enzymes, hormones, immune response, cellular repair and other molecules essential for life. Proteins are also needed to form blood cells.

Proteins are used as an aerobic fuel when carbohydrates are low or as aerobic fuel when lipid resources are also low.

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How Much Protein Should We Eat Every Day

EFSA has developed dietary reference values for protein. The DRVs for protein at different life stages are summarised in table 3. For an average adult, the recommendation is to consume at least 0.83 g of protein for every kilogram of body weight per day.1 In other words, a 70 kg adult should aim to eat at least 58 g of protein everyday day. This is the equivalent to the protein found in around 200 g of chicken breast or 240 grams of mixed nuts.

During periods of growth, such as childhood, pregnancy, and breastfeeding, protein requirements are relatively high. In addition, during old age, our protein to energy ratio begins to increase. This means we require the same amount of protein but less energy due to a decrease in metabolic rate and a more sedentary lifestyle.1

Table 3. Dietary reference values for life stages.1BW: body weight.

Why Is Carbon The Amazing One

Why Does Are Body Need Protein

Carbon is the only element that can form so many different compounds because each carbon atom can form four chemical bonds to other atoms, and because the carbon atom is just the right, small size to fit in comfortably as parts of very large molecules. They can even join head-to-tail to make rings of carbon atoms.

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What Is Protein And Why Do I Need It

Protein is considered the building block of life and is found in every cell of the body.

Protein is made up of amino acids that are attached to one another in long chains. There are 20 different kinds of amino acids, and the sequence in which the different amino acids are arranged helps determine the role of that particular protein.

Proteins play a role in:

  • Transporting molecules throughout the body
  • Helping repair cells and make new ones
  • Protecting the body from viruses and bacteria
  • Promoting proper growth and development in children, teenagers, and pregnant women

Without filling your diet with appropriate amounts of protein, you run the risk of missing out on those key functions. Eventually, that could lead to problems, such as a loss of muscle mass, failure to grow, weakened functioning of the heart and lungs, and even early death.

Protein Foods And The Planet

To give you an idea, this scorecard from the World Resources Institute illustrates the differing GHG emissions per gram of protein from both animal and plant-based protein foods. Making just one pound of lamb generates five times more GHGs than making a pound of chicken and around 30 times more than making a pound of lentils. In the U.S. alone, beef accounts for 36% of all food-related GHG emissions. Beyond emissions, its also important to note that food production places an enormous demand upon our natural resources, as agriculture is a major contributor to deforestation, species extinction, and freshwater depletion and contamination.

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What Happens In Your Body When You Eat Protein

Its not like you eat a piece of chicken and that protein goes directly to your biceps. Dietary protein gets broken down and reassembled into the various kinds of proteins that exist in the body. No matter what kind of protein youre eatingplant or animal, complete or incompleteyour bodys first objective is to break it back down into all the different amino acid units it was assembled from, Dr. Tewksbury explains, through the digestive process.

Then those little singular amino acids get reconfigured into whatever kind of protein your body needs. For instance, some proteins in the body make up antibodies that help the immune system fight bacteria and viruses. Others help with DNA synthesis, chemical reactions, or transporting other molecules, the National Institute of General Medical Sciences explains.

Key Reasons Why We Need Protein According To An Rd

Protein in the diet | Health | Biology | FuseSchool

Gaby Vaca-Flores, RD, CLE, explains why we need protein and how its so important for overall health. Plus: How much protein do you need daily?

Everyone needs protein in their diets, primarily because its an essential nutrient. This means that the body relies on a regular supply of it from dietary sources to meet its needs.

Additionally, protein exists in a synthesis cycle. In other words, the body is always breaking down, using, and discarding it, making it that much more important to ensure youre getting enough.

Keep reading to find out why we need protein and how much you should really have daily.

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Reasons Why Your Body Needs Protein

1. Lean Muscle Mass

Protein is comprised of amino acids these amino acids are the building blocks for muscle tissue so in order to increase our muscle mass, we must provide our body with the building blocks for this new tissue. On the other end of the spectrum, if fat loss is the goal, we want to avoid losing muscle mass whilst in a calorie deficit to keep metabolism up. One of the best ways to maintain muscle mass while simultaneously losing fat is to consume lean protein regularly throughout the day .

2. Muscle Repair & Recovery

When we suffer an injury, we are recovering from a big session in the gym or recovering from surgery our body needs protein to assist in the tissue repair. As mentioned previously, protein provides the essential amino acids, the building blocks, for tissue development. This remains true for muscle recovery, when we suffer an injury, even minor muscular tears that occur from strength training, our body needs these amino acids to help repair and rebuild.

3. Healthy Hormones

Many of us know that we need healthy fat in our diet to produce hormones, but did you know protein plays a role too? We now know protein provides us with amino acids and these amino acids are building blocks for muscles but they are also required for the production of many hormones.

4. Immunity

5. Manage Hunger and Cravings

6. Healthy Hair, Skin & Nails

7. Stronger for Longer

Protein Maintaining Muscle Mass As You Age

From around 50 years of age, humans begin to gradually lose skeletal muscle. This is known as sarcopenia and is common in older people. Loss of muscle mass is worsened by chronic illness, poor diet and inactivity.

Meeting the daily recommended protein intake may help you maintain muscle mass and strength. This is important for maintaining your ability to walk and reducing your risk of injury from falls.

To maintain muscle mass, its important for older people to eat protein effectively. This means consuming high-quality protein foods, such as lean meats.

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Can You Eat Too Much Protein

While many Americans are concerned about getting enough protein, they are more likely consuming too much. “If you’re including protein with most meals and with some snacks, you’re likely consuming an adequate amount,” Smith says. Bihuniak adds: “You really have to restrict your diet to not meet your body’s protein needs.” The daily amount of dietary protein recommended for adults is 0.8 gram per kilogram of body weight, or just over 7 grams for every20 pounds of weight. For a 140-pound person, for example, that equals about 50 grams of protein per day. “That number is going to increase the more that you are active. endurance athletes, that might pop up to about 1.2. Maybe the higher end is about 1.5 if you’re doing a lot of strength workouts. But I do think that the average person also overestimates how active they are.”

Your protein needs can change, however, if you are looking to lose weight.”Eating dietary protein is what we consider to be protein sparing, meaning the idea that when we lose weight, we don’t just lose fat,” Caspero says. “When we lose weight, we’re losing a lot of things in the body, and we lose about 10% of our muscle mass, or protein, as we lose weight.”

Benefit #4 Protein Aids With Muscle Recovery And Growth

Healthy Eating and Exercise

Not only does eating protein help prevent muscle breakdown, but it can also help build and strengthen muscles. Combining regular activity and exercise with high protein intake promotes muscle growth and strengthening.

High-quality proteins contain all of the essential amino acids and are rich in branched-chain amino acids . Leucine, one of these BCAAs, plays a major role in promoting muscle growth and recovery after resistance and endurance exercise. These high-quality proteins exist in animal-based protein foods such as lean poultry, beef, fish, dairy, egg products, and whole eggs.

High-quality plant-based options include soybeans and tofu. Protein powder supplements are also commonly used by athletes, especially post-exercise when real food sources of protein tend to be less accessible.

Protein shakes are extremely convenient, making them useful for active individuals and athletes who are constantly on-the-go. If choosing a protein powder supplement, whey protein and plant-based proteins such as soy or pea have been shown to most effectively promote muscle growth and recovery.

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Final Thoughts On Protein Synthesis

Protein synthesis is a natural process that your body is dependent on to perform daily functions, create enzymes, and for appropriate structural support.

Essential amino acids are needed in order for protein synthesis to occur, and you get these amino acids through your diet.

Including high-quality food choices like meats, eggs, and clean protein powders like Naked Whey or Naked Pea can help ensure that your body is getting the right amino acids to make the ever-important proteins that it depends on to survive.

Why We Need Protein And Protein Sources

Protein is one of the three key macronutrients we need , and it plays an important role in helping our bodies grow, develop and repair. We should eat protein as part of a varied and balanced diet to get the necessary nutrients for our bodies.

Protein is essential to the development of new cells as well as the restoration of muscle, skin and bones.

Choosing a variety of foods helps to provide our bodies with the right quantity and quality of proteins. These can include plant-based protein sources such as pulses and peas or animal-based protein sources such as fish and lean meats.

Having a well-balanced diet that is rich in a variety of plant-based proteins can help with the general maintenance of good health.

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How Much Protein Do You Really Need

Every cell in your body contains protein. But what is protein, which foods contain it, how much do you need each day and why?

Dr Lindy AlexanderFebruary 2018

If youve gone down the health food section of your supermarket lately, you may have noticed the large range of protein products and powders on offer. Claiming to promote everything from more energy to weight loss and bigger muscles, protein seems to be the must-have for health. But is the hype justified?

What is protein?

Protein is an essential nutrient in our diet. It plays an important role in muscle growth and repair as well contributing to enzyme and hormone production.

The building blocks of proteins are called amino acids, and theyre chemically linked to each other to form various combinations of proteins, says Tim McMaster, accredited practising dietitian and spokesperson for the Dietitians Association of Australia.

There are 20 different types of amino acids and theyre broken up into 2 main categories those that can be made by the human body and those that must be provided through the diet .

Why do we need protein?

Every cell in the human body contains protein and it makes up about half of our dry body weight. The protein we eat is broken down and helps to maintain muscle mass and metabolism.

A severe lack of protein can affect almost every part of the bodys function and lead to muscle wastage and a poor immune system.

How much protein do you really need?

The best sources of protein

How Much Protein Do You Need In A Day

Why Do We Need Protein? Why Is Protein Important

    Even if youre not exactly sure what protein is technicallyor how much protein you needodds are that you do know how good it makes you feel. Whether you like to start your day with a filling egg scramble, chug the nutrient in shake form after a workout, or cook up a nice steak for dinner, youre likely familiar with the lasting satisfaction that you get from protein in its many delicious variations. And, as well talk about, protein certainly does enough to earn its reliably good reputation.

    While you know protein is a great thing to have, you might also have a few questions. Like, why exactly does your body need it? How much protein do you need to eat, and when should you eat it? And how does your activity level factor into that? Heres a rundown of what protein does and how much of the nutrient your body needs.

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    Protein And Weight Control

    Eating protein-rich foods has been shown to increase our feeling of fullness more than foods high in fat or carbohydrate. There is good evidence from short term studies that diets high in protein can help reduce overall calorie intake and prompt weight loss. 5 However, the evidence for long-term weight maintenance is less clear.5 Like all diets, a high protein diet is only effective if it is stuck to, which can be difficult for some people and low adherence may partly explain the limited benefit observed for long term weight maintenance.5

    Consume Protein And Carbohydrates Together

    When protein is consumed along with carbohydrates , blood sugar rises and insulin is produced, promoting amino acid synthesis.Carbohydrates are also used as the first energy source, preventing the use of amino acids. After exercise, it is a good idea to have something like a jelly drink that allows you to consume both carbohydrates and protein at the same time.

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