Myths About Protein For Weight Loss Busted By Health Coach Luke Coutinho
Health coach Luke Coutinho busts several myths about proteins. Proteins help you keep full for longer and reduce hunger pangs, thus aiding weight loss.
Protein is a macronutrient which is required by the body in huge quantities
- Luke Coutinho busts several myths about proteins and weight loss
- Proteins break into amino acids in the body to generate energy
- Vitamin intake is equally important as it helps absorb proteins in body
He begins with mentioning that the human body breaks protein from food into amino acids. This in turn generates the right amount of protein needed for your muscles and cells.
Apart from food sources of proteins, many people resort to taking protein supplements in order to increase their protein intake. Luke mentions that people consume whey protein along with a high protein meal under the impression that that protein will go directly into the muscles and your cells. However, the protein is first broken down into amino acids. It is these amino acids which contribute to lean muscle mass which gives fuel to muscles and power to cells.
There are a total of 23 amino acids, 15 of which can be made by the body every single day. The remaining 8 amino acids are known as essential amino acids. We get these essential amino acids from other food sources like green peas, beans, cabbage, cucumber, spinach, sprouts, cauliflower, carrot, kale and nuts and seeds.
Also read: When Is the Best Time to Take Proteins?
Is eating meat necessary for getting sufficient protein intake?
Vegetarian foods give the body the 8 amino acids which it needs to make good quality protein. Non-vegetarian foods like eggs and meat too have good amounts of proteins. But Luke agrees that that amino acid profile can be completed by vegetarian food sources as well. Vegetarian protein can in fact provide the body with the required protein intake.
How much protein is required by the body?
The amount of protein which is required by the body is also something which many people are curious to know. Excessive intake of protein in the body can be quite harmful. Luke believes that the quality of protein is more important than the quantity of protein.
For instance, 7 to 8 gms of protein in 2-3 tbsp of pumpkin seeds has all the amino acids profile required by the body. This amount of protein, as per Luke, is much better than the 30 gms of protein in 1 scoop of whey protein.
He further informs that the human body is capable of absorbing 9 to 12 gms of proteins at each sitting. Thus, consuming 30 gm of protein at one go might be too much for some people. Excess protein in the body can be stored as glucose, which further gets converted to fats. People who take excessive protein for better build-up of muscles might even end up gaining abdominal fat. Too much protein cannot be absorbed by the body in one go.
Also read: Soya proteins help lowers cholesterol levels
Bodybuilders and protein
When it comes to building, the body requires some protein for more production of more growth hormone and testosterone. In case you have low levels of growth hormone or low testosterone levels, your protein intake won't matter. In fact, excess protein can reduce serum testosterone.
In both men and women, testosterone is responsible for building muscle mass and lean mass. Generating more human growth hormone will result in greater muscle and lean mass. People who consume more processed foods, alcohol, sugar or smoke regularly and do not involve themselves in any kind of physical activity, will have lesser production of human growth hormone.
The human growth hormone is actively produced when you do physical exercises like jumping, skipping, etc. Higher production of human growth hormone also results in stronger immunity.
Hormonal imbalance in the body can make the body not being able to break protein into amino acid right away. Hormonal balance can be achieved by taking a balanced nutrition by including right amount of fats, carbs, proteins, etc in your meals. Excess protein in the body is more likely to be stored as fat - which will put more pressure on the kidneys to flush it out.
Vitamins intake is equally important
Being vitamin deficient is not going to help you lose weight or gain muscle. This is because vitamins perform the function of converting protein into amino acid which can be absorbed by the body. Lack of vitamins will make the unable to synthesis protein in the right way. Thus eating a balanced and nutritious diet plays a huge role in terms of how your body will react to the protein you consume.
Avoid small and frequent meals
Roughly, proteins take 3 to 4 hours to digest in our system. Eating small and frequent meals can result in acidity. Acidity can destroy amino acids and this will keep you away from losing weight or gaining muscles. Eating every 2 hours is a mere myth, believes Luke. The body doesn't require nutrition that frequently and thus there should be sufficient gap between 2 meal to allow the body to digest and absorb food.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
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