Protein is one of the most crucial components of a healthy diet. It has a crucial role in our daily life and is present from the brawn of our muscles to the sturdiness of our bones, from the suppleness of our skin to the tresses on our heads. It’s like a versatile army, responsible for forming the powerhouses of enzymes that generate a multitude of chemical reactions and the vital hemoglobin that carries oxygen throughout our bloodstream. At least 10,000 different proteins create our unique identity and maintain our health and well-being. Learn more at Heather Carey MS.
How Much Protein Do We Need?
Protein is an essential nutrient that our body needs to function properly. According to the National Academy of Medicine, adults should consume a minimum of 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight per day, which translates to about 50 grams of protein per day for a 140-pound person, and 70 grams per day for a 200-pound person. The acceptable range for protein intake is between 10% to 35% of daily calorie intake, but there’s little information available on the ideal amount of protein in the diet or the healthiest target for protein calorie contribution.
However, the source of protein matters, as complete proteins are vital. Millions of people worldwide, especially young children, suffer from protein deficiency and malnutrition, which can result in growth failure, muscle mass loss, weakened immunity, and even death. However, it’s rare for healthy adults in developed countries like the U.S. to have a protein deficiency because there’s an abundance of plant and animal-based protein sources. In fact, many people consume more than enough protein, especially from animal-based foods.
Best Sources of Protein:
Protein is an essential nutrient and can be obtained from a variety of sources, but note that some are more beneficial than others. To ensure a well-rounded diet, you can incorporate lean meats like chicken, turkey, beef, and pork, or fish, and seafood that are also rich in healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids.
A healthy diet must contain protein because it is necessary for our body’s tissues to develop and repair. Moreover, it is crucial for the creation of hormones, enzymes, and other necessary chemicals. Thus you may feed your body for optimum health and well-being by having a range of protein-rich foods in your diet.