Protein is like one of the popular students in high school. You know the ones — captain and lead scorer of a sports team, perfect grades, brand new car, and, of course, royalty at prom. It’s basically the Allstar of nutrients or at least that’s what everyone says.
You keep hearing about how protein is one of the most important substances in the body, but what exactly does it do? How does plant protein differ from animal protein? Which is better? Don’t worry, we’ll help clear things up for you.
Why is Protein Important?
Protein is one of the most essential nutrients in the body. In fact, it helps to maintain the overall health of the body by aiding in a multitude of bodily functions that include:
- Boosting Your Energy – Did you know that protein contains 4 calories-the main energy source of the body? In fact, it contains the exact same number of calories as a carbohydrate. Foods that are rich in protein can increase your energy levels.
- Keeps Collagen Levels High – Collagen is of the most abundant proteins in the body. You know collagen, the substance that keeps your skin looking young by providing necessary elasticity. Not to mention, it’s also found in connective tissue throughout the body.
- Promotes Proper Body Function – Certain kinds of proteins are utilized during important chemical reactions that occur in the body. You can thank protein for blood clotting, digestion, muscle contraction, and much more. Go protein!
- Building Muscle – Who doesn’t want to look lean and fit? Protein helps to build and repair muscles in muscles throughout the body. It’s very important for athletes and those who are working to gain muscle to fuel them with a good amount of protein.
Protein has a number of other important functions in the body, too many to list out. However, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to state that ensuring that you are getting enough protein on a daily basis is an important step to take when trying to maintain your health. Especially since 20% of the body is made up of protein.
What’s the Difference Between Plant and Animal Protein?
The bottom line is that the body needs protein to survive, the difficulty is figuring out where to get it. Both animal and plant proteins have health benefits and are essential to proper body function.
The greatest difference between animal and plant protein is its source. Animal protein is found in meat, fish, and dairy products. Plant protein is found in plant-based foods such as vegetables and fruits.
Those who follow a plant-based diet such as vegetarianism and veganism, gain sufficient amounts of proteins without eating meat and dairy products but must be careful to ensure that they are getting enough.
Plant proteins are incomplete, while animal protein is wholly complete with all of the proteins that the human body needs. However, that doesn’t mean that animal protein is the clear winner of the battle of the proteins. Processed meats and dairy have their own health drawbacks to consider.
As long as you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, and protein it is up to you to determine where you get them from. A balanced diet is a great way to aid in maintaining your body’s health whether you choose to follow an omnivorous or plant-based diet.
Plant or animal protein — that is the question and it’s up to you to answer. If you are looking to add more plant-based protein to your diet, you’re not limited to just plain fruits and vegetables. You can, in fact, enjoy a low-calorie and nutritious snack in Grabanzos. The best part? It’s chock-full of plant protein and chocolate. Sounds like a dream.