Our body needs different kinds of nutrients to be able to maintain its health as well as its basic processes. These nutrients can be acquired through eating nutritious foods such as fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy products and others.
Protein is one of the major nutrients that are needed by our body. Proteins are complex organic compounds that are composed withy carbon, hydrogen oxygen as well as nitrogen. The amino acids are the end product of protein digestion. Amino acids are considered to be as the building blocks of the protein nutrients.
The amino acids are classified into essential, semi-essential and non-essential. Essential amino acids are needed for the growth and body development and they should be included in a daily diet. The semi-essential amino-acids are also essential for the health as well as in maintaining life but they are found to be inadequate for growth especially for the growth of the children. The non-essential amino acids can be synthesized by the body and are not necessary to be present in our diet.
There are about three major function of protein in the body namely; for body building, for the energy supply, and for the regulation of body processes.
For body building, the protein nutrients are considered to be essential as they made up the 20% of the total body weight. Without the water in our body, the protein will make up 50% of our total body weight. Proteins in our body are in the form of muscles, bones, the cartilage and body fluids. Protein as a body building element means that it is an integral part of all the tissues within the body.
For energy supply, the protein also provides an amount of energy like the carbohydrates. However proteins might be an expensive source of energy as compared to other energy sources such as carbohydrates or fats. Providing energy to the body is only protein’s secondary role to the body system. The primary sources or energy for body consumption should be the fats or the carbohydrates.
For the regulation of the body processes, proteins help in facilitating the exchange of the nutrients coming between the cells and the fluids within the cell as well as in facilitating the exchange of nutrients between the cells and the blood. The proteins also help in maintaining fluid balance.
It is an important consideration to eat foods that have lots of protein to be able to ensure, the body building needs of the body as well as the energy supply and regulation of the body processes.