Protein is the main building block for our muscles, and can significantly boost our metabolism. By increasing the size of your muscles, protein will make the body burn fat, which will result in a slender and nicely toned body.
Protein is required by the body so it can function properly. It’s constantly broken down and needs a regular replacement, which is why it’s so important to eat protein-rich foods. Consuming less than the recommended amount of protein can cause muscle, bone and joint pain, make your metabolism slow and will also result in problems with weight loss. Low energy levels and extreme fatigue are also common symptoms of protein deficiency, as is poor focus and a weakened immune system.
Here are 9 signs which show that your body lacks protein:
High cholesterol levels
If you’re suffering from high cholesterol and triglyceride levels, you may be lacking protein in your body. Both problems can also be caused by hormonal imbalance, inflammation and a diet rich in sugar. By consuming too much sugar and processed foods, you will also increase the risk of liver disorders and cardiovascular problems.
Anxiety and mood changes
Protein and amino acids are building blocks of neurotransmitters which control your mood. The nutrient can also promote the production of dopamine and serotonin in the brain, resulting in feelings of calmness and positivity.
Reduced physical performance
As protein is vital for our muscles, lack of it can lead to severely decreased physical performance. Consuming a diet that lacks protein will result in fatigue, muscle weakness and weight gain. Even if you exercise more, you will still be unable to lose weight.
Insomnia and other sleeping disorders have been related to low protein levels which can cause low serotonin levels, increased blood sugar levels and high cortisol levels as well. The blood sugar swings can continue through the day and night, as carbohydrates need insulin more than protein or fat. However, by consuming protein before going to bed, you will increase the levels of tryptophan and serotonin, which will result in better sleep.
Brain fog is a common problem which occurs due to low serotonin, epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine levels. As we already mentioned, neurotransmitters are made up of protein and amino acids, so increasing your protein intake should resolve any mental problem caused by lack of it.
Bloating and constipation
Proper amino acid intake is vital for our digestion. If you’re often tired and can’t go to the bathroom regularly or you’re bloated after meals, you need to increase your protein intake.
A protein-based diet will result in better satiety than a carbohydrate-rich diet. Protein will keep you from overeating and help you escape the subsequent weight gain.
Irregular menstrual cycle
Irregular menstrual periods and infertility are usually symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome, and obesity and pre-diabetes are two of the biggest factors for the condition. Insulin resistance affects 70% of women suffering from POS, and has been associated with a low or no-protein diet.
Slow healing injuries
Not consuming enough protein will result in a bigger risk of injuries as well as muscle weakness and fatigue, osteoporosis and fractures. Protein is important for proper calcium absorption and your bone metabolism as well, which is why you should consume more of it.
In general, the amount of protein we need varies from person to person. The recommended daily intake is 56 gr. for men and 46 gr. for women, but it depends on your age, physical activity and body weight. You can find this important nutrient in many foods including hemp and flaxseeds, chia seeds, almonds, oats, buckwheat, quinoa and sprouted nuts and grains. Mushrooms, kale, broccoli, spinach and Brussels sprouts are also full of protein and should be a part of your daily diet. Certain types of meat such as grass-fed beef and organic poultry are also chock full of protein.
As you can see, protein is highly important for our overall health. Stick to the recommended daily intake and you will keep yourself in better shape.
Article and image source: besthealthyguide.com