Alongside carbohydrates and fat, proteins are the third major component of our diet. Proteins play a vital role in building and repairing the cells in your body. Your muscles, your organs, and the outer layers of your hair, nails and skin are all made from protein.
Protein also plays a vital role in the proper functioning of your blood, making antibodies and haemoglobin, which is crucial for delivering oxygen to your blood cells. If you are working out, then protein helps build muscles, increase strength, and improves performance.
There are a limited number of foods that can supply protein in significant quantities:
Proteins have been in the news lately because of the popularity of high protein diets. While many people swear by them for weight loss, physicians have been busy denouncing them because of the potential health problems associated with excessive protein intake.
As with most things, the truth lies somewhere in between. There is no doubt that a very high protein diet, with a dramatic reduction in the consumption of carbohydrates, can lead to health problems. Carbohydrates are our number one source of energy, and carbohydrates, including vegetables, fruits and whole, grains, contain a host of essential vitamins and minerals.
On the other hand, an increase in protein consumption, if accompanied by a decrease in the consumption of simple carbohydrates (sugar, sweets, white flour products) can definitely contribute to healthy weight loss.