If you've been around MGF at all you've probably heard me talk about the importance of eating enough daily protein. This is ESSENTIAL from not just the standpoint of maintaining a lean & strong physique, but also down to the molecular level and how protein supports tissue repair, immune function and organ health.
Adequate protein intake is essential for maintaining one's overall health and well-being.
Proteins are the building blocks of life, playing a crucial role in various physiological processes within the human body. One of the primary functions of protein is to support the growth and repair of tissues. When we consume protein-rich foods, our bodies break down the protein into amino acids, which are then used to repair and build muscles, organs, skin, and other vital structures. Without sufficient protein intake, the body may struggle to repair itself, leading to weakened immune function, delayed wound healing, and loss of muscle mass.
Now, most people who eat 3 square meals a day are likely consuming enough protein to support these basic physiological functions. This is about .36 grams of protein per lb of bodyweight, so around 50-60g of protein for the average female. If you're not consuming at least this much on a daily basis, you definitely may want to start being intentional about prioritizing more protein intake! And once you do, you will likely find yourself having more sustained energy throughout each day and less bouts of brain fog, as well as the ability to perform better in workouts and in your day to day activities.
If you are someone who is looking to build lean muscle mass through strength training, your next vital step in achieving that goal is consuming a higher level of daily protein. The recommendation here is about .8 grams - 1.0 gram of protein per pound of body weight. So that's well over 100g of protein daily for the average female! Think about it, at a basic level, your body needs 50-60g per day to simply function, so then to support your body in building more muscle, you need to fuel it with more protein.
Protein is critical for maintaining a healthy metabolism.
Protein has a high thermic effect, meaning that the body expends more energy to digest and metabolize protein compared to fats or carbohydrates. This increased metabolic rate can aid in weight management and promote fat loss when combined with a balanced diet and regular exercise. Moreover, adequate protein intake helps regulate appetite by promoting a feeling of fullness, which can reduce overall calorie consumption and support weight maintenance or loss goals.
This is why having meals and snacks centered around a protein source is so important. Protein keeps us feeling full for longer periods of time, meaning we are less prone to hitting up the snack cabinet for things like cheez-its, pretzels, crackers, fruits, and other quickly expendable snacks that leave us feeling hungry within an hour.
Protein is a key player in enzyme and hormone production, helping to regulate various bodily functions.
Protein is also essential for the synthesis of important molecules like antibodies, which are crucial for a strong immune system. If you find yourself catching colds often, a good place to check in with yourself at is your diet and if you are consuming adequate daily protein (and of course eating enough veggies too)!
Additionally, protein is involved in the transportation of oxygen and other nutrients throughout the body, making it indispensable for overall cardiovascular health! To my runners out there, yes, protein is HIGHLY important for you too!
You can see why ensuring an adequate protein intake is fundamental to supporting the body's structure, function, and overall health. It supports the building blocks of our bodies and minds to keep us energized, sustained and healthy.
In addition, increasing protein intake to an adequate amount for muscle building (alongside strength training techniques) is the way we help manipulate our physiques to get stronger, build muscle, and shred fat.
Check out the resources below showing protein rich sources!
A favorite protein snack recipe of mine is protein yogurt. It's super easy to throw together and you can load it up with superfood ingredients!
All you need is:
1. Non-flavored yogurt (knix that flavored yogurt with 20 grams of added sugar) *could be greek yogurt or if you're dairy free, Forager makes a killer cashew milk non-flavored yogurt that I love!
2. Then toss in a 1/2 or full scoop of your favorite protein powder (maybe add a little water to help blend it in if needed)
3. Your choice of added superfood toppings:
- chia seeds
- ground flax seed
- pumpkin seeds
- a little bit of granola for a crunchy touch
4. Enjoy this yummy snack or this could also make for a great breakfast option as well!
Please like below if you found this article helpful! My goal through MGF is to provide you with resources and be a place of further education and understanding when it comes to your health and fitness!