Monday, November 17, 2008

So just what is protein?

If you are training and eating to lose weight, protein needs to be a staple in your diet. Why? Without getting all scientific or geeky on you, here is a simple explanation.

A protein is a long chain of amino acids. Proteins have different functions, some of which are; maintaining structures within our ligaments, aiding in digestion, the building and repair of muscles, and the production of antibodies and hemoglobin.

Protein is one of three essential macronutrients identified in dietary requirements. Since its primary function is the growth and repair of body tissue, it is required for just about every cell within out bodies.

Protein will also boost your metabolic rate, which in turn helps your body torch the fat. Some research as shown a boost in metabolism in as much as 30% for several areas after protein in consumed, whereas, a high carb meal might only produce upwards of 10%. This means a higher protein diet keeps our metabolism burning calories even after you have eaten.

Protein also helps to stave off hunger. Starting your day with a large egg and egg white veggie omelet will hold you over much longer than the fruity cereal that you may be wolfing down now. That is assuming you are even eating breakfast. The breakfast issue is itself an important topic, which we will address in a later post.

Protein after a workout means potentially less pain later. Drinking a protein shake immediately after workouts has been shown to be the best way to boost muscle protein synthesis at the most critical time of your training day, thereby optimizing the muscle building and growth processes. Conversely, if you don’t use the post workout window to feed the muscles properly, those fibers will actually breakdown rather than rebuild. Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) may also be offset by a post-workout shake.

So, with all of the above information you can see the importance of protein in your diet, so let’s work on getting in some more during the next week.


Haze said...

Thanks for the post I appreciate it alot. I really didn't understand what the reason for so much protein was for. I'm going to look in to trying to find some type of protein shake that I can drink after the gym that is low in points, but that doesn't tast gross.


Kathleen said...

I'm glad this helped. I'll be writing another one on the three big macros, carbs, protein and fat and how they all work together.

As for a good protein shake I would suggest the EAS carb control premixed ones. They taste like choco milk.

Give it a try and let m eknow.