Protein: Building Block for Health
Protein is essential for life and accounts for 15% of the body's composition. Protein is an important component of every cell in the body and is used to build and repair tissues. It is an important building block for the bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, hair, nails, eyes, and blood as well as hormone regulation.
If protein is not supplied, the body will leach it out of other areas/muscles to compensate, or the repair process will begin to shut down. Muscles need a constant supply of protein to continue the building process.
Protein deficiency symptoms include: hair thinning or loss, lethargy, poor recovery from illness and nail and skin weakening.
Eating a protein with a carbohydrate every 2-3 hours is ideal for energy and stable blood sugars. It also increases satiety, stable blood sugar (less cravings), and reduces insulin response which helps with fat loss.
Also, digesting protein is metabolically expensive and diets higher in protein will also lead to increased dietary induced thermogenesis (which is like your body doing internal cardio).
Those who go through Fat Loss vs Dieting always feel younger and stronger. Why? They've replaced the cells that were lost with new ones made from adequate protein, clean foods, exercise, and water. They are now cellularly building a brand new body!
So what are good sources or protein?
· Chicken: breast or thigh meat, Ground chicken
· Turkey: breast or thigh meat, Ground turkey (breast or dark, watch fat percentages)
· Emu: ground or thigh meat
· Bison: steaks, ground, or stew meat
· Ostrich: all forms
· Beef: lean cuts include sirloin, round steak, filet mignon
· Albacore tuna (in water)
· Canned tuna (in water)
· Mahi Mahi
· Salmon - wild caught
· Sea Bass
· Eggs: whole eggs or egg whites
Think you can find something to eat here?
So the next question is how much should I be eating? My guess is that many of you are eating about 50-100 gms of protein a day. My recommendation is to be eating more than that but again this is a gradual process. Remember how awesome protein is for the body.
Start by eating protein with EVERY meal and snack. Have a 3 oz of chicken with your apple, a hard boiled egg with your oatmeal, etc. This will help keep the insulin response in check and will increase the amount of protein you consume each day.