Protein - The Denominator Customary to All Diets
Copyright © 2005, Protica Research
The Human Body is in a constant flux with the environment. Matter and molecules flow in and out, casting themselves into its complexities. Although the body lends them structure, it is the intake—the diet—that decides its physique. To control what goes in a diet is to choose what stays inside. Dietary decisions reflect an awareness of metabolism and the nutrients needed to modify it. There may be a host of diets purported for each activity and illness. However, the one macronutrient that is invariably required, in substantial amounts irrespective of the physiological state, is protein.
Proteins hold this special place in every diet for a variety of
reasons. They connect the DNA to the rest of the cell and
modulate all cellular functions and responses. They are the
scaffolds of the human body that struts a billion cells. Proteins
are also the workers that shuffle around the body relaying
messages, carrying out repairs and digestion. Oxygen from the
lungs and many nutrients from the gut are protein packed and
delivered to their destination. The motors in the muscles and the
antibodies in the immune system are all proteins. If genes code
life in a helix of DNA, then proteins are life in its decoded
form. Their pervasiveness makes them indispensable and, protein
synthesis a priority in metabolism.
Add to this myriad of functions the astronomical turnover rate of
proteins, and continuous protein synthesis becomes vital. Every
protein has a short life span and is soon broken down into its
constituent amino acids. New proteins are required to take their
place. The skin itself is renewed every seven days. Then there
are proteins that get used up, damaged or excreted, and need to
be produced again. Protein synthesis goes on at a frantic pace
even in normal people. Then there are periods of rapid growth,
like athletes in training, teenagers, convalescent patients,
babies, pregnant or lactating mothers, where protein synthesis
reaches an all time high. Proteins are broken down for other
reasons as well. In times of stress, illness or starvation, the
body just cannot find enough sources of energy. In such
circumstances, proteins are taken apart into their constituent
amino acids and are used as fuel. Therefore, in all physiological
states, cells are constantly at work, churning out new proteins.
To maintain this obligatory and intense rate of protein
synthesis, the body needs a dedicated supply of amino acids.
Unfortunately, unlike carbohydrates and fats that are stockpiled,
the human body has no arrangement to store extra amino acids. The
persistent demand for proteins and amino acids has to be met anew
every day and from three possible sources: cellular production,
the diet or breakdown of other body proteins. Of these, cellular
production would be most convenient. If the cell could produce
all the required amino acids, there would be no compulsion to
provide them in the diet. However, there are amino acids that
just cannot be produced in the body. These ‘essential amino
acids’ have to come from the diet.
Proteins, from the diet or supplements, are the best alternative.
The supply of all amino acids can be ensured and in sufficient
amounts. Cellular metabolism is relieved of the obligation to
produce amino acids except for making minor adjustment in the
supply chain. Protein synthesis can go on uninterrupted. Unless
the diet meets the perpetual demand for amino acids, other,
relatively expendable, body proteins are broken down to fulfill
the requirement. In effect, a dietary deficiency of proteins
forces the body to feed on itself.
The need for proteins in every diet is undeniable. The average
American diet provides 1.2 g/kg of protein against the
recommended daily allowance of 0.8 g/kg. The question, then, is
whether to add protein supplements to an existing diet? While
proteins from food may seem adequate, there is no telling whether
all essential amino acids are supplied, and there is little way
of knowing how easily those proteins are digested and assimilated
into the body. A carefully researched protein supplement like
Profect, when taken regularly, would remove such uncertainties.
Apart from supplying amino acids for protein synthesis, a high
protein diet based on Profect has other advantages. Studies on
high-protein diets have demonstrated their ability to induce
weight loss. A high-protein diet produces early satiety and
decreases the total energy intake. Protein synthesis, an energy
consuming process, is promoted. The energy to assimilate such a
diet, calculated as the ‘Thermogenic effect of feeding’, is high.
More calories are burnt, more proteins are synthesized and the
lean body mass increases while the body weight goes down. Brawn
is exchanged for flab.
Proteins from Profect form bioactive peptides in the gut that can
enhance gut defenses. The harmful gut bacteria are killed and
normal flora is allowed to colonize the intestinal lining.
Profect also protects the system from free radicals, free
electron molecules produced during intense activity and stress.
Free radicals are known to damage cell membranes. Their role in
aging, cancer and blood clotting is being intensely investigated.
Profect increases the levels of Glutathione, a free radical
scavenger that mops up free radicals shielding the cell from
their effects. The added water-soluble vitamins and mineral in
Profect prevent the loss of calcium and other micronutrients seen
on high-protein diets.
Writer's Resource Box:
Founded in 2001, Protica, Inc. is a nutritional research firm
with offices in Lafayette Hill and Conshohocken, Pennsylvania.
Protica manufactures capsulized foods, including Profect, a
compact, hypoallergenic, ready-to-drink protein beverage
containing zero carbohydrates and zero fat. Information on
Protica is available at http://www.protica.com
You can also learn about Profect at http://www.profect.com
Copyright - Protica Research - http://www.protica.com
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