Healthy liv­ing

The power of pro­tein

Woman (UK) - - Contents -

When you think of pro­tein you might vi­su­alise a sculpted fit­ness pro down­ing a shake af­ter a vig­or­ous work­out. af­ter all, pro­tein equals mus­cles, right? wrong! It has many more uses than just help­ing us flex our bi­ceps. In fact, it’s one of the most im­por­tant nu­tri­ents in our di­ets. So what is it and why do we need it?

the pro­tein puz­zle

Pro­tein is es­sen­tially our body’s build­ing blocks. When we eat food con­tain­ing pro­tein, our di­ges­tive sys­tem breaks it down into amino acids, which pass into our blood. ev­ery­thing from our fin­ger­nails, hair and skin to our mus­cles, organs, bones and lig­a­ments need it. even our brains need pro­tein to com­mu­ni­cate. in short, we’re made of the stuff.

Pro­tein helps us pro­duce hor­mones, gen­er­ate and re­pair cells and makes en­zymes to digest food. ‘it also pro­vides en­ergy and helps rev up our me­tab­o­lism,’ ex­plains di­eti­cian He­len bond (he­len­bond. co.uk). ‘it helps us feel fuller for longer. add beans, pulses, eggs, fish and poul­try to meals to keep hunger at bay,’ she adds.

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