Have you suffered from any of the below?

  1. Feeling low on energy or tired very often.

  2. Having a lot of hair fall.

  3. Brittle nails that break very easily.

  4. Weak bones or easy fractures.

  5. Water retention.

  6. Increased appetite and food cravings.

  7. Poor immunity or frequent infections.

  8. Fatty liver.

  9. Lack of focus.

  10. Feeling low and sad.

If you have three or more of the above symptoms, it is likely that you are not consuming sufficient quantity of a crucial nutrient – PROTEIN.

When our diet is not sufficient in protein, muscles are broken down for energy. This leads to muscle wasting and causes fatigue. In addition, protein rich foods are also high in iron, zinc and other micronutrients that facilitate normal body functions and help prevent fatigue.

Hair and nails are nothing but protein. As these are of secondary importance to the body, the body preserves the protein consumed for more important functions, which is why the quality of your hair and nails can indicate if your are protein deficient. Collagen forming the main support network for bones is also a type of protein.

Protein also plays a role in regulating fluid balance inside and outside cells. Any deficiency in protein contributes to water retention, especially around the ankles and feet. To restore this balance, it is critical to have at least 10g of protein every time you eat something.

It is an established fact that protein keeps one full for longer period of time. Protein takes longer to digest, thereby making sure your blood sugars do not rise immediately and also allowing you to stay satiated. In a research study, it was found that individuals taking protein in all meals made better food choices compared to those who had a protein-deficient diet. People consuming a protein-deficient diet always reached out for calorie-dense food items that were either deep fried or high in sugar.

All the body’s defense systems or troops are made of protein. Now imagine if you do not have enough resources to fight infiltrators in a war? Protein deficiency can also cause a fatty liver. Protein is critical to liver function and hence this is an important nutrient for a vital organ. Most of the brain neurotransmitters are made of protein which influence both mood and focus as well.

Very often, people are of the opinion that protein is associated with kidney issues and it is harmful to one’s health. The fact is that there is a basal protein requirement that should be maintained. Every cell in the body is made up of protein and hence a basic amount of 0.8 to 1g protein per kg of your body weight has been specified by the Indian Council of Medical Research as a daily requirement. So then why does everyone think it can cause kidney problems? The answer is ‘nothing in surplus is good’. When taken in excess of the requirement (protein requirement varies based on your age, gender and activity patterns) and with a low daily intake of water, there can be an issue. Further, if a person is already having a kidney issue, protein should be administered as per the healthcare professional’s discretion.

In every meal, you can consume protein by making sure you have egg or milk and milk products or soya and its products or dals and pulses, which will help you reach at least half of your required protein through diet. To meet your requirements, you can try BodyFirst® (https://www.bodyfirst.in/product/whey-protein.html) range of products.