Our body needs protein for numerous reasons, and its deficiency weakens overall health, as the body will begin to break down muscle tissue in order to supply the needed amino acids.
Unlike the other micronutrients and fat, you can rarely hear a bad word for protein.
Protein consists of amino acids, and when it is digested, the body breaks down their string into individual amino acids. Each of these amino acids has its role in some aspect of our health, and they are divided into two groups: essential and non-essential.
Our body is able to create the non-essential acids, but when it comes to the essential ones, we need to get them through our diet.
The most important role of protein is to repair and build muscle mass. It also creates neurotransmitters such as melatonin, dopamine, serotonin, which send signals around the body, so it cannot function without them.
Additionally, protein also plays a role in the production of antibodies, enzymes, and hormones.
Needed protein amount
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the minimal daily amount is .13g/lb of protein per bodyweight, to stay alive and prevent muscle wasting, and their official recommendation for protein consumption is .30g/lb.
Yet, this depends on numerous factors, such as the age, physical activity frequency, type, duration, goals, etc.
For instance, older people need a bit more protein than the average consumption recommendation by the WHO, but the range within .2g/ – .8g/lb is undoubtedly safe. Going beyond it can be highly risky, as it will overburden the liver.
Namely, when the body metabolizes protein, it creates ammonia, and the liver converts it into urea and it gets eliminated through the urine. Therefore, excessive protein levels cause unneeded stress to the liver.