A lesson in... Protein

in hive-120078 β€’Β  2 years agoΒ 


What is protein? 🌟 Why is it important? 🧬 What foods contain protein? πŸ’₯

🌟 Proteins are chains of amino acids. They fold up into structures specific to their function.
🌟 Proteins are broken down in the small intestine into amino acids which are then absorbed to be used for energy or to make other proteins that the body needs.
🌟 Some amino acids can be made in the body, but some cannot so we must eat them. They are called 'essential amino acids'.

🧬 Your body has many uses for proteins. They are the 'building blocks' of muscle, blood, skin, bones, hair, nails etc.
🧬 Antibodies are created when a pathogen (bacteria, virus etc) enters the body. Antibodies are giant proteins designed to fight the pathogen.
🧬 Enzymes are proteins that are folded in a very particular way so they have a very specialised job. Think of it like a lock and a key: an enzyme will match only it's substrate. Enzymes are 'biological catalysts' and are crucial for many bodily functions including digestion and DNA replication.
🧬 Some hormones are proteins. These act as 'messengers' that tell cells what to do eg. Growth hormone is a protein that stimulates growth.
🧬 There are many other functions of proteins such as fluid balance (swelling), helping to maintain blood pH, transport molecules around the body etc etc... THEY ARE SUPER IMPORTANT!

πŸ’₯ High quality proteins are proteins that contain all the essential amino acids (the ones the body cannot make), they are sometimes also called 'complete proteins'. Foods such as animal products (meat, eggs, dairy etc.) as well as quinoa and protein supplements (check the individual brand/product).
πŸ’₯ Lower quality proteins do not contain all the essential amino acids so a variety must be eaten to make sure that all the essential amino acids are consumed. Foods such as grains and legumes, nuts and seeds, fruits and vegetables.

Any Qs, please ask!

Reference: Whitney and Rolfes, Understanding Nutrition, 14th Ed.

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Thanks for this information!