Understanding Protein Part: 1,000,000
Sometimes I feel like a broken record that is played in a room filled of deaf folks. I don't know why trying to explain the reason why we need to eat protein is so difficult. So for the one millionth time I will try to explain the importance of protein.
Every time you move you use breakdown tissue, every time you go to the rest room and eliminate you lose millions of cells. Cells are protein. Just about everything the body is made out of is protein. Protein is the building material of all cells. Protein is the most important compound. Muscle is protein. When you tear down muscle you must replenish it with-- you guessed it-- PROTEIN. You will never build a muscle by consuming only sugar. Sugar is a fuel. Though sugar is necessary for the metabolic processes of the cells it does not make new cells. What makes up the structural integrity of all cells is protein. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are 20 amino acids that the needs for proper tissue health, 9 of which are not manufactured (essential) in the body and must be received from food. The problem that I contend with everyday is trying to convince people that they are not taking in enough protein to match their recommended daily allowance. Most people that I talk with all tell me the same thing, "the doctor told me that if I eat too much protein then I will damage my kidney's and liver." People are afraid of eating protein. All I want to know is where did this doctor go to medical school? Because this type of advice is ridiculous. In order to damage your kidney's from eating protein you would have to consume more than what is humanly possible. The human body is the most sophisticated and intricate organism known. It regulates the internal processes quite well. If there is too much protein coming in to the blood stream the body's regulatory systems will quickly resolve the situation. Most of the extra protein will be excreted via urea. It would take years of eating very high concentrations of protein to cause an adverse effect on the kidney's. I have eaten so much protein over the past thirty years that would be considered deadly by medical doctors-- yet, I am still staying upright and feel phenomenal. I am not suggesting that you consume as much protein as I do. We all have our own bio-individuality and must eat according to our own make up. However, I will say it again-- MOST PEOPLE ARE NOT TAKING IN ENOUGH PROTEIN TO match their daily recommended allowance. It seems that people are more concerned with how much fat and carbs they take in rather than trying to get in their recommended daily allowance of protein.
What happens when you don't eat enough protein? You use your own muscle to provide protein to the vital nutrient exchange system. The more you train and break down tissue the more protein you must consume. The more you run -- the more protein you need to consume. The more you cycle-- the more protein you need to consume. The more you get jiggy with that special someone-- the more protein you need to consume. The more you move-- the more protein you need to consume.
Here is the most common scenerio. People try to lose weight (fat) by exercising more and eating less. They consume mostly carbohydrates with little or no fat and protein. They end up putting on fat because they are using too much of their own muscle to provide the VNES its protein needs. The person continues following this schedule only to end up either very skinny with little muscle mass or fat with little muscle mass. The problem with American obesity is based on the fact that most people aren't taking in enough protein. They are taking in plenty of carbs and the doctors aren't saying anything about that. I have heard of more people affected by disease and physiological damage to the internal organs from eating too many carbohydrates than from eating protein. Matter of fact I have never met anyone that has a blown out kidney from eating protein, yet I see clients everyday who suffer from high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and high cholesterol. They all take in high levels of carbohydrates with little protein. Sugar is more damaging to the internal organs of the body than protein.
I WILL SAY IT AGAIN. Most people aren't even close to their recommended daily allowance for protein intake.
Eating low grade proteins is not the answer either. Yogurt, fortified protein cereals, grains, are not the best sources of protein. Yes! they have a small of protein in them, but the value is usually low grade. What this means is that by the time the food is digested the protein amount is degraded into a small amount. You would have to consume a ton of the stuff to fulfill your recommended daily allowance. Increasing the quantity will only add more sugars, which is not good. People eat things that are quick and easy to consume -- "ready serve." These types of foods are poor in protein value. You might think you are taking in enough daily protein but the truth is you're not. So the muscles have to be catabolized to fulfill the VNES requirement.
The best sources of protein are eggs, red meat, chicken, fish, some nuts, cheese, unpasteurized cream/milk. These are all the foods that we have been brainwashed in to believing will kill us if we eat them-- go figure. These foods are the staple of my diet and I have never had any adverse effects from consuming them. I am able to maintain muscle mass and have a very low (healthy) body fat percentage. One time I did an experiment and ate nothing but healthy carbohydrates, no protein. Within three weeks I lost almost 10 pounds of muscle and started to gain subcutaneous fat around the waist. As soon as I went back to my regular way of eating I put the muscle back on and lost the extra body fat that I collected.
How do I find out how much protein I need to take in per day? Schedule an appointment with me at The Fitness Nut House or sign up for my online personal training service. www.darylconant.com
or purchase my book "diet EARTH" at www.darylconant.com
Daryl Conant, M.Ed
tags: protein, Vince Gironda, Daryl Conant, Ron Kosloff, diet EARTH