Archive for December, 2013

Protein Is So Important

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

What Difference Does It Make?
Why does it matter whether your food is real protein or an imposter? For one thing, protein has many functions in the body.pondli And when it comes to ending sugar addiction, protein helps.

Here are some benefits of protein.
• Protein promotes CCK. CCK (cholecystokinin) is a powerful hormone that makes us feel full and turns off the desire for carbs. Vegetarians often have intense cravings for sugar and other carbs because they don’t get enough protein.

• Proteins are made of amino acids, which we learned about in 7th-grade biology as the “building blocks of protein.” Protein contains amino acids that the brain uses to make key chemicals that keep our brains functioning optimally so we don’t crave junk.lamm If you’re trying to give up sugar, protein helps to kill sugar cravings.

• Protein improves mood because it triggers the brain chemicals that keep us awake and feeling great. Protein also provides B vitamins (thiamin, niacin, B6, folate) that are catalysts in the synthesis of those important brain chemicals. Dietary recommendations sometimes underplay protein, which may reflect under-emphasis of protein’s effects on brain chemistry.

• Protein foods are the only ones that stimulate the release of glucagon. The hormone glucagon opposes the effects of insulin (which promotes fat storage, among other things). Glucagon can help boost metabolism, decrease cholesterol production,lainglaingblock the growth of arterial smooth muscle cells, and more. Glucagon is typically released when we exercise and when we eat protein.

High-protein foods include fish, poultry, beef, lamb, shrimp, crab, eggs, cottage cheese, and the right type of yogurt (see above). Almost every food is a combination of protein, carb, and fat – or 2 out of 3. Find foods with substantial protein in them.

A general protein recommendation for endurance athletes is to divide body weight in pounds by 2.2 to convert to kilograms, camellia502’s diary and multiply by 1.2 to 1.4 for daily grams of protein.

For many years, I’ve recommended a “plate” format that the USDA’s new Food Pyramid-replacing plate resembles. I avoid the USDA plate because it over-emphasizes fruit.

Instead, cover half of your plate with vegetables. Divide the other half equally between protein and complex starches (quinoa, sweet potatoes, brown rice, perhaps whole grain pasta, etc.). Add healthful fats (nuts, oils, seeds) in moderate portions. If you want to eat fruit instead of vegetables (say at breakfast), have 1 serving, not half a personal One serving is a medium-size fruit or half a cup.