How Important is Protein Really?

By Stepy Kamei

When it comes to listing out the most important and necessary nutrients that your body needs to get from your diet in order to thrive and function, protein should always land at the top, or at least near the top, of that list. Your diet should be healthy enough to be giving you the most important nutrients your body needs to thrive and function well. Make sure you understand the importance of protein so you can incorporate enough of it into your diet every day.

What Does Protein Do?

Protein is vital to ensuring that our muscles remain strong and can recover from injuries and strains that much faster. Essentially, it ensures the basic building blocks of the body are sustained an adequate amount. Protein is so powerful that it can even out a person’s mood, which is good news for anyone who deals with bouts of depression, anxiety, or just general irritability. Interestingly, irritability is one of many surprising symptoms found in people who aren't getting enough protein in their diet. What’s more is that foods high in protein generally tend to make us feel fuller for longer, which means we are less likely to overeat, or to even overindulge in such baddies as fast food, chips, candy, and cookies. When it comes down to it, protein is vital for keeping your overall physical and mental health in excellent working order. While everyone really needs to do what they can in order to make sure that they are getting enough protein in their diets each and every day, it's also crucial to figure out your specific protein needs, as these can vary depending on your fitness level, stress, body type, etc.

Where to Get Protein

First of all, while you may be thinking that you should stock up on more red meat for protein, you should recognize the fact that there are many different sources of protein out there, and that too much red meat is not good for your health. Fish is an excellent source of lean protein, so try adding salmon and trout into your meals at least once a week. Beans are also a great source of protein that most people of various dietary restrictions can still enjoy, so be sure to incorporate black beans and pinto beans into your meals as often as possible. Finally, you can always turn to nuts, nut butters, seeds, and even seed butters for added protein and healthy fats into your diet.