Not all the people are aware of this but protein is an incredibly important part of our diet. Every cell in the human body contains protein and you need protein to help your body repair cells and make new ones. For this reason, it’s really important to eat a healthy and balanced diet that contains enough protein. According to nutrition experts, you need to consume approximately 50 grams of protein through your diet on a daily basis.
Why you need protein to stay healthy
We’re always being told to avoid certain foods, and eat more of others. Some of us try not to eat too many fatty foods, while others will stay away from carbohydrates. The truth is, we all need a little bit of everything to remain healthy! Our bodies need protein for a number of different reasons. One of the most important reasons is that protein is actually a component of the cells in our body. Your hair and nails are made of proteins!
Unlike fats and carbohydrates, your body doesn’t store protein, so if you’re running low then there’s no extra store to draw from. This is why it’s so important to include enough protein in your diet. Protein is a building block of your bones, cartilage, skin, and even blood.
For those of you who are focused on building muscle, or spend a lot of time in the gym, extra protein can actually help to build and repair tissue. This is important if you are using your muscles a lot, as the protein can feed your muscles and ensure they can recover quickly.
Protein is especially important for growth and development in children, teens, and pregnant women.
When protein is digested, it breaks down into amino acids which your body needs. These amino acids are then used around the body where needed. Protein is an important factor in keeping your immune system functioning properly and with so many endless benefits, it’s clear that including enough protein in your diet should be one of your priorities!
Meat and seafood are good sources of protein
We can get protein from a lot of different sources, including dairy products like milk, but one of the main sources is meat and seafood – these contain more protein than the vegetarian sources such as lentils and beans.
If you rely on meat to get your daily intake of protein you should make sure you buy the best quality, lean cuts and organic, if possible. In terms of saturated fat, poultry is much healthier than red meat, just don’t eat the skin!
Choosing the best type of meat
The nutritional value of meat can be heavily dependent on how the meat itself has been reared and prepared. Wild or naturally reared meat, fish, and seafood will have much better nutrient qualities than if you were to buy factory-farmed meats.
Industrially farmed animals that have been reared in an unnatural condition will not result in the best quality meat and consequently not in the best quality protein.
Buying your meat carefully is the first step in making sure you are eating clean, healthy protein. Meat that has been reared on a natural diet and has been looked after carefully will make sure that you reap the benefits of its nutrients.
So, next time you’re shopping for your meat, ensure you make a conscious choice to buy quality, naturally reared meat.
Vegetarian sources of protein
Eating too much meat is not good for you so it’s a good idea to include in your diet a good amount of vegetarian sources of protein as well. Apart from meat and fish, you could also include eggs, beans, lentils, chickpeas, nuts, seeds, tofu, bean sprouts, etc. All these vegetarian foods are rich sources of protein and you should definitely add them to your diet if you want to reduce your meat intake.
Last but not the least, if you want to maintain a healthy, balanced diet that can provide you with all the important nutrients, you should also consume a lot of vegetables and fruits.