The protein food group is one of the most important sources of food we need to take in along with carbohydrates and fats. Protein is really important because although fat and carbohydrates serve functions that are interchangeable to some extent, protein has no substitute that can replace its function.
It is really important to know how much protein can your body absorb. The daily intake of protein for an average man with a mildly active lifestyle is about 36 grams. Taking in more protein than our suggested daily intake for a long time leaves us with damaged liver and kidneys whereas taking in less protein than the recommended dosage leaves us with impaired growth and repair abilities.
That being said let us look at some of the important functions that proteins impart to our body:
Have you ever noticed how athletes and sportsmen are always raving about supplements like protein powders? This is because athletes need lots of muscle build up, much more than the average person, and this is given to them by protein supplements. We need to maintain our muscle mass by eating good amounts of protein every day.
Protein muscles are also responsible for helping us move the muscles in our body. There is a complex symphony of little movements performed by muscle protein that eventually leads us to move our own muscles to perform daily functions like walking, lifting weight, writing or anything else.
Hair and Nail Growth
Our hair and nails are also made of protein. There are expensive protein treatments available to make our hair stronger and more beautiful and to make our nails grow healthier. Lack of protein in the diet can also be figured out by seeing the condition of the hair and nails of an individual. People who eat less protein usually have thin and weak hair and brittle nails.
Regulation of Bodily Functions
Proteins are also used in the formation of enzymes and hormones. Enzymes and hormones are used to carry out almost every function our body performs. The better our protein intake, the more optimal our bodily functions get. Less protein intake means fewer enzymes and fewer enzymes means that your normal bodily functions will need much more time to be carried out. You will, therefore, feel lethargic and sick.
Protein is the main component our body needs for tissue and cellular repair. So if you take in less protein than the dose which is recommended for you, you will see your body’s healing abilities getting less efficient. Any internal damage to your organs and all will also be more pronounced if you do not take the dose of protein that is recommended for you.
Source of Energy
Lastly, protein may not be the main source of energy for our body, but in emergency needs, for example, conditions of starvation, our body actually uses stores of protein in our muscles and all as a source of energy.