Protein: A Vital Macronutrient

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Protein: A Vital Macronutrient

Protein is an important macronutrient that your body needs. We share types of food that help with protein and how much you should consume.

Protein is often deemed as the most important macronutrient, as it is where the entire body's muscle mass finds fuel to recover. Aside from eating protein filled foods, it's always wise to eat foods low in calorie at the same time. Many people often neglect to look at the entire composition of nutrients in a food, in turn causing them to consume where more calories than necessary. When it comes to fitness, balance is key. Even though reaching certain numbers for macros is important, it's also vital to stay within your specific calorie boundaries.

What types of food help with protein

- Moringa

Per 100 grams of Moringa, there are 9.4 grams of protein and only 64 calories overall. This unique leaf is considered to be the ultimate superfood that offers an array of health benefits along with being packed with protein. The various combined nutrients of Moringa has been shown to help fight cancer, support proper digestion, boost heart health, and also act as an antioxidant as well as anti-inflammatory. Overall, adding Moringa to your diet regardless of your fitness goals will make meeting your protein count much faster and easier than normal.

- Skinless White Chicken

There is no surprise that lean meats like chicken are always considered as a healthy source of protein by many. This food however can often get smothered in various added calories and fats that can easily be avoided. When skinned and lightly salted, for every 100 grams of boiled white chicken, you will have consumed over 31 grams of protein and only 165 calories. Whether you want to maintain your current weight or gain lean muscle, incorporating a good amount of chicken to your daily menu will make meeting your protein quite a simple task.

- Spinach

Although not as much protein in comparison to chicken and Moringa, spinach is still one of the best ways to get your protein. Per 100 grams, you will get about 3 grams of protein for only 23 calories. Spinach also contains various vitamins and minerals that the body needs to sustain optimum health. Infused with magnesium, potassium, carotenoids, iron, folic acid, calcium, as well as vitamins B6, B9, C, K, and E, your body will thank you for consuming a few cups of popeye's favorite vegetable.

- Eggs

Lastly eggs are considered to be one of the most effective ways to consume lean protein. There are many meats that are packed with protein, but often they come with a lot of added fat, cholesterol, and sodium. So how much protein is in an egg you might ask. When boiled per 100 grams of an egg, there are 13 grams of protein and only 155 calories. To cut the calories even more, simply take out the egg yolk, sacrificing just 2 grams of protein but deducting over 103 calories overall. Eggs in general are just a very high quality source of protein. The nutrients mostly are in the egg whites, plus they're infused with various nutrients like Vitamins D, B6, B12, and B2 along with iron, copper, and zinc minerals.

Importance of protein in the body

There are 20 different amino acids that help the body to form thousands of proteins in the body. Proteins in fact do the most work in the body's cells allowing you to perform various physical jobs. In order for muscles to renew tissue and heal, it needs protein to rejuvenate. The body naturally is in a constant state of renewal, therefore regardless of your physical activity levels, you need protein to keep your muscle mass healthy. Protein does not just benefit the muscles in the body but also the health and well being of the overall body.

These main proteins are known as elastin, collagen, and keratin. All of which help to form connective framework of different structures in the body. Elastin is the most flexible form of protein that allows the tissues in the body to go back to original shape after being contracted or stretched. Collagen is considered to be the most abundant form of protein in the body, as it's the structural protein for your ligaments, skin, tendons, and bones. Lastly, Keratin is used as a structural protein found in your nails, hair, and skin.

How much protein should you consume?

This question is often debated by countless nutritionists, doctors, and self-proclaimed fitness enthusiasts, but the real answer is simply that it varies on what your physical goals are. Rule of thumb normally is to consume .36 grams per pound of body weight, which would range around 56 grams a day for a sedentary man with an average physique and 46 grams for women. Knowing what types of protein to consume is always important, because though there are countless meal replacements and bars out there that contain lots of protein, not all are ideal forms to consume all the time. Eating your protein opposed to drinking it also helps the body to absorb the protein faster. Eating mostly whole natural foods rich in protein also makes it easier to absorb as well.

Before incorporating more protein into your diet, be sure to seek guidance from a medical professional, as too much of anything is never good. Having a better knowledge on protein sources will make eating healthy a lot easier. Reaching your fitness goals will be much faster when your body is being nourished with enough protein, vitamins, and minerals.