Every human, animal, or insect you can think of is made of proteins as building blocks. The building blocks are composed of chains of 20 different types of amino acids. Proteins make life in form of hormones, hair, nails, bones, teeth, and many more things that I won’t go into just now! The smallest units of protein, known as amino acids, fall into the category of either essential amino acids or non-essential amino acids.
Essential amino acids are proteins that the human body cannot synthesize and so they can only be supplied in the diet. They include leucine, lysine, valine, threonine, isoleucine, tryptophan, phenyalanine, and methionine. Non essential amino acids are proteins that can be produced in the human body as long as hydrogen, carbon, oxygen and nitrogen components are supplied to the body in diet. They include cysteine, glycine, histidine, tyrosine, arginine, aspartic acid, glutamine, alanine, serine, cystine, glutamic acid and aspartic acid. You don’t need to remember all of these fancy names, but did you notice how many we can’t make on our own? This is why getting good sources of protein in your diet is essential!
Good protein sources from animals may be eggs, fish, milk, and chicken. You can also find good sources of protein from plants such as nuts, beans and whole grains.
Protein For Muscle Gain
The amino acids in proteins are essential in the building of muscles and blood in the body, especially for those that perform regular exercise. If your body is injured, it is protein that helps in tissue repair - this includes the muscle damage that occurs from intense exercise! Also, along with carbohydrates, proteins can provides the body with energy although in a less efficient manner.
Human Skin, nails, hair and cartilage are made from proteins. These parts of the body are ever growing, and they need a sufficient supply of proteins to continue growing. Like other cells in your body, your muscles are roughly 60-70% percent water. After that, the next most plentiful component in muscle cells is of course protein. Since the body does not store excess proteins, it is very important to eat foods rich in proteins every day to make sure your body has what it needs. Without it, you’ll have a very difficult time keeping your well earned muscle, no matter how much you work out and will certainly find it difficult to gain more! Don’t underestimate the amount of protein required to gain muscle! You need adequate amounts so that your body is able to rebuild the muscle cells slightly better and stronger than before.
Protein For Fat Loss
You may have heard that protein is ideal for fat loss. Protein tends to be very filling, so this can help with individuals who have trouble controlling their calorie intake due to an increased appetite! Protein can reduce your appetite as it causes your brain to release lower levels of ghrelin (an appetite stimulating hormone). Additionally, protein only contains 4 calories per single gram, compared to 9 calories per gram of fat!
When aiming to lose fat make sure to prioritise lean sources of protein, whether this may be from an animal or plant source. Complex carbohydrates should be included in your diet as well - make sure to include plenty of vegetables to bulk up your meals too. Lastly, don’t forget to eat adequate amounts of fat, from healthy sources preferably!