3 Top Benefits Of Protein
Everyone always talks about the importance of having protein in your diet, but do you really know why?
To start off let’s go through 3 primary benefits for having protein in your diet, then some additional extras, and finally what would be a good amount to aim for.
1. Maintaining Muscle Mass
Our muscle tissues are continuously being broken down, more so when we exercise. Having protein in our diet maintains a frequent flow of amino acids in circulation, preventing catabolism and protecting your muscle tissue from degrading.
Think of amino acids (proteins) like a kitchen sink with the plug taken out. If you don’t keep the tap flowing consistently, you’re not going to maintain the level of water within the sink and eventually, if the tap stops you’ll lose all the water. Whereas, with carbohydrates and fats, you have a valve, and you can store and release them when necessary. This is why it’s important to try and have some protein with each meal, so that you’re topping up your amino acids in circulation to maintain your muscle mass and…
2. Fuel Growth & Repair
It’s hard enough to generate new quality muscle tissue, but without sufficient protein to recover, and rebuild your tissue, it’s out of the question. By the way, protein doesn’t just repair and build your muscle tissue, it also looks after almost every tissue in our body, such as: tendons, ligaments, skin, and others, as well as our bones, which is why it’s so important to our diet.
3. Satiety & Energy Control
Having a higher level of protein in your diet will increase your satiety, which in turn will reduce your cravings for sugary foods (as you’re be more satisfied from a higher-protein meal) and balance out your blood sugar levels.
Other Benefits Of Protein Include:
- It has the highest Thermic Effect of Food (TEF), it takes more energy / calories for the body to break it down and distribute around the body than carbohydrates or fats.
- Therefore, improves our metabolism.
- It helps synthesize important hormones (including those that make us feel happy and relaxed).
- It supports our immune system.
What To Aim For:
Rather than having to calorie count and weigh out the exact grams of for each food. Using something we can compare with, wherever we are, for personal portion-sizing is a much better approach for sustainability.
For protein, compare against the size of the palm of YOUR hand (width, length and thickness), and aim for 1-2 palm-sized portions at each meal you’re having – this goes for BOTH men and women, as your own personal palm-sizes will differ.
So To Recap!
- More protein, means better recovery, more muscle (not bulk!), less fat, and a stronger, healthier, leaner body.
- Aim for 1-2 palm-sized portions at each meal.
Stay Healthy and Happy!