- I have been a teacher of fitness and health for thirty years. In 1989 I was certified for personal training with the National Acadamy of Sports Medicine. I had a gym in Santa Barbara for eight years. Co-owned and created a spinning bike company which manufactured bikes for five years. Also I have worked with nutrition companies for twenty years. Along with many wonderful non famous people I have trained many celebrities, and members of the Royal Family. My own athletic past consists of long distance running, long distance cycling, cross country skiing, down hill skiing, rollerblading, hiking, sand running, track work, and weight training. I have authored two fitness columns in local papers, and have been writing this blog since January 2010.
Saturday, January 9, 2010
Are You Eating Enough Protein?
Protein is one basic component of food and makes all life possible. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. They provide for the transport of nutrients, oxygen, and waste throughout the body. They build and repair muscle, and provide collagen to connective tissues of the body and to the tissues of the skin, hair, nails, muscle, bones, and blood.
Protein is essential for growth, creating muscle, and the repair of tissue. If you are working out and not eating any protein your results will be hard to attain.
When you have an infection, you should eat more protein because it helps create the antibodies your immune system needs to fight disease. If you are injured, you may need more, as well, to help your blood clot and make repairs.
Where do we get protein from? Meat, chicken, pork, turkey, fish, eggs, legumes, nuts, some grains, and in dairy products like cheese, yogurt, and cottage cheese, are ways to get good protein sources.
Females need a minimum of 50 grams of protein per day. An average egg has 9 to 10 grams, average chicken breast has 20 grams, and 4 ounces of beef has about 25 grams. When looking at dairy products read the label to see how many grams of protein are in it. The amount of protein in nuts will vary by type and serving size.
If you are active and are more of an athlete you will require more than 50 grams a day. It will depend on how much you are training and what kind of training you are doing.
I have known a few Vegans in my time, and I can tell you that most of them lacked in muscle and strength. It does not mean you can't be strong being a vegan, but you will have to be very focused on getting enough protein from grains and vegetables. Not easy to do.
There was a study done with two groups of women who had undergone face Lazar. One group were meat eaters, and the other were vegans.
The group that ate meat for their protein source healed in two to four weeks, while the vegan group took up to six months and experienced redness and blotching even after the six months.
Protein is what heals you. Your body repairs itself while you are sleeping. That is when growth, repair, and rest happens. It is important to eat enough protein and get enough sleep for your body to benefit from the exercise you have put it through.
Another way to get protein is with protein powders. Try and find powders that do not have a lot of sugar, chemicals, or artificial sweeteners in them. The purer the better. I prefer soy protein, but most powders are made from whey (a byproduct of cheese) because it is the cheapest form to buy.
Most protein powders have 20 grams per serving, which makes it easier to get your minimum of 50 grams a day. Just make a fruit smoothie and add a scoop of protein powder to it. It's tasty and easy to do.
If it is muscle you are after, you must be getting enough protein. Make the choice to eat the right foods that will get you the right amounts of protein, train right, and watch your body become healthy, beautiful, and strong.