What Is ProteinWhat is protein where we get it from and how it helps us, we all have heard of protein but do we know what it is. Protein is a macronutrient, and it is made up of amino acids, and it has very important functions in the body such as building muscle forming skin and hair and helps cartilage.
There are 20 different amino acids and they are
- ASPARTIC ACID
- GLUTAMINE ACID
The body can make most of these itself but 8 of them cannot be built this way, so it is important that you get these through food. These 8 amino acids are known as essential amino acids (because the body can’t synthesize them, making it ESSENTIAL to include them in your diet)
These 8 amino acids are:
When you ingest food your body starts to digest it, after the protein is fully digested and broken down into amino acids they will then bind together with other amino acids to make different proteins then go round the body to perform different functions.
Protein can be found in animals and plants. Also you will get complete and incomplete proteins which mean:
Complete Proteins: Protein that is high in essential amino acids.
Incomplete Proteins: Protein that is low in essential amino acids.
As above, protein can be found in animals and plants animal protein is normally high in essential amino acids and therefore known as a complete protein this can be found in
Animal Protein: RED MEAT, CHICKEN AND OTHER WHITE MEATS, FISH, DAIRY PRODUCTS, EGGS.
Plant protein is normally low in essential amino acids and is therefore known as an incomplete protein this can be found in:
Plant protein: FRUIT AND VEGTABLES, NUTS, SEEDS, PULSES.
What does protein do?
Protein makes up part of every cell and tissue in your body, including muscle tissue, organs, tendons, hair, skin and nails. Protein is required for the growth and formation of new tissue and mending tissue, it can also be used as fuel for energy production.
Athletes have higher protein requirements than non active people, it is needed to compensate for the increased muscle breakdown that happens during and after intense exercise and to build new muscle.
A lot of people believe that extra protein will lead to increased muscle and strength gains but this is not true it is the stimulation of the muscle tissue through exercise that leads to muscle growth not extra protein, basically if you don’t go down the gym but have a high protein diet you will not build muscle.
If you are working out you will require more protein than someone who doesn't go to the gym to compensate for the increased workload you are putting your muscles through. You may not be able to eat all the protein from food, so it is a good idea to introduce a protein powder into your daily calorie intake because nutrition is an important part in bodybuilding.
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