The Importance of Protein
High protein diets are all the rage these days. Society is slowing moving away from a low fat diet to more of a high protein, low carb style of eating. Athletes, body builders, models and busy mums are all jumping on the protein band wagon. But what’s so good about protein you may ask? Let me keep it simple and tell you all the secrets about the power of protein.
What is protein?
Protein, along with fat and carbohydrates is classified as a macronutrient. This means your body needs to consume these to stay healthy. But unlike fats and carbohydrates, your body is unable to store protein for later. Therefore, it’s important to regularly consume protein. Protein is made up of many different amino acids which are vital for a healthy body and mind.
What does protein do?
Most of us know that protein helps to build and repair muscle, but protein also has many other import roles in the body. Protein helps to maintain our bones, tendons, ligaments, hair and skin and is vital for the transportation of oxygen throughout the body. Protein is also important for hormone production and maintaining a healthy immune system.
So how much of this good stuff do we need?
It is recommended to consume between 0.7 – 1.7 grams of protein per body weight or 15-25% of your daily energy intake. This intake also depends on your age, gender, activity level and whether or not you are pregnant. The most effective way of fulfilling your daily protein is to eat a small amount of protein at each meal. Great sources of protein include lean meat, fish, dairy, eggs, nuts and seeds.
As a busy athlete, I plan my meals to ensure I am eating enough protein to keep up with my rigorous training program. I ensure I eat protein at every meal whether it be lean meat, beans, eggs or a protein shake. But finding a protein filled, tasty snack is often a challenge, that’s where Aussie Bodies protein bars tick all the boxes. I always make sure I have one with me to eat as a snack during the day or post training. And if I have a chocolate craving I reach for the Aussie Bodies Low Carb Mini Almond Brownie Protein Bar (my favourite!).