Protein, along with fats and carbohydrates, is one of the main nutrients. While fats and carbohydrates serve mainly as a source of energy, protein plays a major role as the building material of the body. Protein-rich foods should therefore be on the menu daily.
What is protein?
In addition to being important as building material (muscles, tendons, connective tissue), proteins also act as transport agents in the blood, as storage proteins (for example iron) and play a large role in the immune system, metabolism and hormones.
A protein is made up of so-called amino acids. We need to ingest 20 of these amino acids through diet because the body cannot make them alone. The type and amount of these amino acids in foods determine the quality of each protein source, because proteins are not equal to proteins.
Animal or vegetable protein?
Animal protein is more similar to human protein and therefore has greater biological value. Therefore, meat, fish, eggs and dairy products are particularly valuable suppliers of protein. A very good source of plant-based protein is soy (e.g. tofu), which has approximately the same biological value as protein. Legumes like lentils and beans also provide significant amounts of protein, but are also high in carbohydrates, which is why we prefer pure protein sources for an easy life in the weight loss phase.
Why is sufficient protein intake so important when losing weight?
A diet based on significantly reduced calorie intake keeps our metabolism on the back burner and we starve. The fat deposits are spared, the body begins to reduce muscle mass. Although it leads to weight loss, but unfortunately in the wrong place. Carbohydrate reduction and simultaneous protein intake, however, conserve muscle mass, boost fat metabolism, and make you full. The extra pounds in the form of adipose tissue disappear on their own, the craving does not go away and long-term weight loss without the yo-yo effect.
Made by mag. Carmen Crepaz, M.Sc.
Nutritionist at easylife
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