Proteins are the buildings blocks of our body, responsible for the building, maintenance, repair and replacement of muscles, cells and tissues. Proteins are extremely vital for the body’s growth, strength, proper functioning and health.
Proteins are made up of 22 smaller units called amino acids, numbering hundreds of thousands and attached to one another in different combinations.
Some amino acids are synthesized by the body itself and are called non-essential amino acids. On the other hand, nine amino acids, the essential ones, cannot be synthesized by the body but must come from the food consumed. Protein-rich food like meat, fish, eggs, milk, legumes, soybeans etc., as well as supplements like the best hgh supplement will easily supply the protein needs of the body.
Proteins play an important role in the smooth functioning of the organs and systems in our body. Protein deficiency will lead to degeneration, and even collapse of the musculo-skeletal, nervous, immune and other systems, leading to muscle wastage, growth and health problems etc.
Following are the main roles that proteins play in our body:
Building Tissues and Muscles
The body is constantly building, maintaining and repairing itself with the help of protein, which make up our muscles, tissues, cells, hair, nails etc. When protein is deficient in our body, muscles will lack development and strength, and become sore and weak. Body fat will deplete, skin and hair will be dull, and water may build up in the organs, leading to many other complications.
Enzymatic and Hormonal activities
Enzymes are proteins that play vital roles in muscle relaxation and contraction, digestion, nerve impulse transmissions and many other essential activities. The enzymes lipase and amylase, for example, help digest fats and carbohydrates.
Protein hormones assist biological processes by binding to receptors and transmitting signals to maintain vital body functions and coordinating between different cells, tissues and organs. For example, the hormone insulin controls blood sugar levels.
Supporting the Immune System
The body needs a strong immune system to fight diseases. Certain proteins, the anti-bodies, are present and play a vital role in defending the body from foreign invaders like bacteria, viruses and fungi. Immunoglobulin G and immunoglobulin A are two such protein antibodies.
Transportation and Storage
In the cellular structure the plasma membrane acts as a filter to regulate materials moving in and out of the cell. Proteins embed within the plasma membrane and assist by binding atomic and molecular material, then transport them within the cells throughout the body. For example, hemoglobin is the red carrier protein in the red blood cells that transports oxygen from the lungs to the tissues and returns carbon dioxide, a waste product, from the tissues to the lungs.
Protein has other purposes in your body. This macro-nutrient provides energy in the form of calories. Your body burns protein when carbohydrates or fats are not available. Additionally, some proteins aid in producing hormones, while others support functions of your immune system. Amino acids from proteins in your diet enter a large pool or mixture. Your system pulls the amino acids it needs to support all of these functions and then excretes the excess through urine.
Complete vs. Incomplete
Proteins from foods can either be complete or incomplete. Complete proteins provide all of the essential amino acids — there are more than 20 of them. Meat, seafood, dairy and eggs are all complete proteins. Incomplete proteins provide only some of the essential amino acids you need each day. Plant-based proteins, such as whole grains, nuts, beans and lentils, are all incomplete proteins. You can get all of the essential amino acids you need solely from incomplete protein sources, but you have to have a variety of these foods throughout the day. For example, if you have nuts as a mid-morning snack, enjoy a bean burrito at lunch and have brown rice with your dinner. Consuming several types of incomplete proteins ensures that you get the essential amino acids that some foods may be lacking.
Different types of proteins
There are many different types of proteins in our bodies. They all serve important roles in our growth, development and everyday functioning. Here are some examples:
- Enzymes are proteins that facilitate biochemical reactions, for example, pepsin is a digestive enzyme in your stomach that helps to break down proteins in food.
- Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system to help remove foreign substances and fight infections.
- DNA-associated proteins regulate chromosome structure during cell division and/or play a role in regulating gene expression, for example, histones and cohesin proteins
- Contractile proteins are involved in muscle contraction and movement, for example, actin and myosin
- Structural proteins provide support in our bodies, for example, the proteins in our connective tissues, such as collagen and elastin.
- Hormone proteins co-ordinate bodily functions, for example, insulin controls our blood sugar concentration by regulating the uptake of glucose into cells.
- Transport proteins move molecules around our bodies, for example, hemoglobin transports oxygen through the blood.
As protein is extremely necessary for many vital processes and requires constant replenishment, ensure you eat sufficient quantities of protein-rich foods daily. Alternately, you may consider supplementary formulation, available with measured compositions. These formulations, like the best hgh supplement, are easy to use and safe to consume, for complete health, growth and vitality.
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