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5 Tell-Tale Signs You’re Not Getting Enough Protein in Your Diet

Did you know that the word protein stems from the Greek word protas, which means “of primary importance”? It’s no surprise, because protein is one of the most important nutrients you could put into your body. Protein is an absolute necessity, because it:

  • Builds and repairs body tissues
  • Keeps the immune system functioning properly
  • Produces enzymes, hormones, insulin, and other body substances
  • Burns calories
  • Regulates body processes, such as forming red blood cells, transporting nutrients, and assisting in digestion
  • Provides energy

Being on a low protein diet can be very dangerous. Protein deficiency may lead to serious health issues, like low blood pressure, skin lesions, diseases that may be fatal, and the inability to build new tissue, It’s very important to be aware of whether or not your diet has enough essential amounts of protein. You can find out simply by paying attention to your body. If you feel that there’s not enough protein in your diet, you can look for the following tell-tale signs and take action if necessary.

Sign #1: You get sick more often.

The less protein you consume, the weaker your immune system becomes. A group of proteins called the complement system is actually the first line of defense against disease-causing bacteria and viruses in the body. If your body is low on protein, you’ll get sick much easier, and you won’t be able to recover as quickly.

Sign #2: You’re losing hair, and your nails are brittle.

Protein greatly contributes to tissue and cell growth, and that includes hair and nails. Once you stop feeding your body enough protein, your body starts using its store of protein in tissues to keep everything functioning properly. It actually takes protein out of your hair and nails. That results in thin, falling hair and brittle nails.

Sign #3: Your wounds take forever to heal.

If you have a scab that just won’t go away, it might be a good idea to boil up some eggs or put some nuts in your salad. Protein is used for energy before it goes to healing, so when you start cutting back on protein, the first body part to suffer is the skin. Always keep in mind that when your body goes into healing mode, you should always double your recommended daily intake of protein, especially if your wound is severe.

Sign #4: Your skin is getting drier and drier.

Collagen is an important protein. It keeps your skin healthy and moisturised  When your skin isn’t getting enough collagen, it becomes dry and scaly. If your protein deficiency prolongs, you’ll become more prone to sunburns, rashes, and ulcers.

Sign #5: You feel more fatigued than usual.

High-protein foods like fish, chicken, or eggs pump tyrosine into your body. What’s tyrosine? It’s an amino acid that produces dopamine and norepinephrine. What are dopamine and norepinephrine? Neurotransmitters that energize your body. They’re often called “wake-up chemicals”. The bottom line is that protein makes you think more quickly and feel more motivated and energetic. If you’re feeling lethargic and depressed for no reason, it’s probably because you’re not getting enough protein.

There are many ways to add more protein to your diet.

There are many foods rich in protein. Some of them include pork, beef, fish, eggs, cheese, milk, beans, nuts, and seeds. You can also drink protein shakes or eat protein pudding. Once you start putting enough protein into your body, the above symptoms should subside and you’ll find yourself being in tip-top shape again!

Article provided by Dora Novak, freelance writer on food and health related topics, currently working together with dietdirect.com

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