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What’s the buzz on protein? Here is the nutrition solution.

Hello everyone!

Georgina Fourzan with Health & Nutrition Solutions here to shed some insight into this super macronutrient.

Protein provides energy and supports your mood and cognitive function. Have you been experiencing the blues or perhaps feel a bit anxious? It’s very likely that you may be protein deficient. Read on…

Biology fact: what is protein?

Protein is a vital nutrient required for being healthy by building, maintaining, repairing tissues, cells, and organs throughout the body. While it’s in many of the foods that we eat every day, for something so common it’s often a neglected part of our diets.

When you eat protein, it is broken down into the 20 amino acids that are the body’s basic building blocks for growth and energy. The amino acid tryptophan influences mood by producing serotonin, which can reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety and improve overall cognitive function.

Most animal sources of protein, such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy, deliver all the essential amino acids your body needs.

The health benefits of protein

Protein gives you the energy to get up and go—and keep going. And isn’t that what we all want? Being productive and staying sharp is important to all of us no matter the age. It will help you think clearly and may improve memory.

Improve your mood and boost your resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression

Eating the right amount of high-quality protein keeps your immune system functioning properly, maintains heart health and your respiratory system, and speeds recovery after exercise.

Is vital to the growth and development of children and for maintaining health in your senior years.

Can help reduce your risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Help you maintain a healthy weight by curbing appetite, making you feel full longer, and fueling you with extra energy for exercising.

As well as being imperative to feeling healthy and energetic, protein is also important to the way you look. 

Eating high-quality protein can help you maintain healthy skin, nails, and hair, build muscle, and maintain lean body mass.

And who doesn’t want to look good and feel great huh?

So, tell us Georgina how can we get protein?

Well it’s simple and here are the best ones:

Good sources of high-quality protein

  • Fish. Most seafood is high in protein and low in saturated fat. Fish such as salmon, trout, and herring are also high in omega-3 fatty acids. 
  • Poultry. Removing the skin from chicken and turkey can substantially reduce the saturated fat. In the U.S., non-organic poultry may also contain antibiotics and been raised on GMO feed grown with pesticides, so opt for organic and free-range if possible.
  • Dairy products. Products such as low-fat cottage cheese and Greek yogurt offer lots of healthy protein. Beware of added sugar in low-fat yogurts and skip processed cheese that often contains non-dairy ingredients.
  • Beans. Beans and peas are packed full of both protein and fiber. Add them to salads, soups and stews to boost your protein intake.
  • Nuts and seeds. As well as being rich sources of protein, nuts and seeds are also high in fiber and “good” fats. 

When should protein be eaten?

Well at every meal! Our bodies need that kind of consistency in order to stay alive and healthy.

Tips to increase your protein intake

To include more high-quality protein in your diet, try replacing processed carbs with high-quality protein. It can reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke You’ll also feel full longer. This can help you maintain a healthy weight.

  • Reduce the amount of processed carbohydrates you consume—from foods such as pastries, cakes, pizza, cookies and chips—and replace them with fish, beans, nuts, chicken, and some dairy.
  • Replace a baked dessert with Greek yogurt, or swap out slices of pizza for a grilled chicken breast and a side of beans.

And there you have it ladies and gentlemen, protein is the most important super-food for humans to live healthy and energetic lives.

Working with a nutritionist will help you understand your own protein needs and provide solutions for the amount of protein that is right for you.

Let me know how I can help by leaving me a comment below. But most importantly share this information with a friend who may be struggling with health issues.

Until next time keep living the fit life!

Georgina Fourzan

ISSA Nutrition Specialist.

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