When you eat protein it breaks down into amino acids which travel through your blood and are carried through your body. Your cells then take the amino acids they need to make new tissue, blood cells, hormones, antibodies and hormones.
There are 22 different types that your body needs to function properly, some it can make itself, but there are 8 which you need to consume in your diet. These come from meat, poultry, fish, eggs, milk — all dairy, cheese and soy – basically anything that comes from the animal. Nuts and legumes (peas and beans) contain some but not all of the essential amino acids; these are known as incomplete proteins.
Is protein essential for good skin?
Well your hair follicles, nails, skin, muscles and eyes are all made of protein. Protein is also necessary for tissue repair and new tissue. It’s needed to replace work out or cells which have died. That includes the lining of the gut which is essential for good liver, immunity and skin health. The body also uses protein to make hormones, the balance of which are essential for good skin.
How much protein do we need?
Somewhere between 0.8-1.2g per kg of body weight
- Women need approx 45-60g/ day.
- Men approx 64-80g/ day.
- Girls approx 35-45g/ day
- Boys 40-65g/day.
- Athletes need even more.
Remember to spilt your protein across 3 meals per day. The body doesn’t absorb more than 20g per meal so anything extra will be excreted in your urine.
Food sources of Protein
Below are some great food sources of protein. Remember, try and get 20g of good quality protein per meal. What can you use from the below table to include in breakfast, lunch and dinner?
|Food||Portion Size||Protein (g)|
|Tuna, canned||1/4 cup||17|
|Dairy and Eggs|
|Whey Protein Powder||1 scoop||20|
|Casein Protein Powder||1 scoop||20|
|Greek Yoghurt full fat||1 cup||19|
|Yoghurt, Full fat||1 cup||8|
|Egg White||1 egg||6|
|Beans and Legumes|
|Green split peas||1/4 cup||11|
|Peanut Butter||2 tbsp||9|
|Almonds, Raw or roasted||1/4 cup||7|
|Almond butter||2 tbsp||5|
|Pumpkin seeds, raw or roasted||2 tbsp||7|
|Sunflower Seeds, raw or roasted||2 tbsp||6|
|Chia Seeds, raw||2 tbsp||4|
|Pasta, Grains and Potatoes|
|Pasta, whole wheat||90g||7|
|Sundried Tomato||1 cup||7|
|Broccoli, Raw||1 cup||3|