Proteins are large biomolecules that take part in almost all body functions. The deficiency in protein can deteriorate the overall health because the body will start breaking down muscle mass in order to get the amino acids. Proteins consist of amino acids which turn into individual amino acids when digested. Each of these acids have a particular role in the health and they are divided in two groups: essential and non-essential.
Our body is able to create the non-essential acids, but when it comes to the essential ones, we need to get them through our diet. The most important role of protein is to repair and build muscle mass. It also creates neurotransmitters such as melatonin, dopamine, serotonin, which send signals around the body, so it cannot function without them.
Additionally, protein also plays a role in the production of antibodies, enzymes, and hormones.
Needed protein amount
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the minimal daily amount is .13g/lb of protein per body weight, to stay alive and prevent muscle wasting, and their official recommendation for protein consumption is .30g/lb. Yet, this depends on numerous factors, such as the age, physical activity frequency, type, duration, goals, etc.
For instance, older people need a bit more protein than the average consumption recommendation by the WHO, but the range within .2g/ – .8g/lb is undoubtedly safe. Going beyond it can be highly risky, as it will overburden the liver. Namely, when the body metabolizes protein, it creates ammonia, and the liver converts it into urea and it gets eliminated through the urine. Therefore, excessive protein levels cause unneeded stress to the liver.