Protein is hidden in every single body part – the organs, tissue and cells. Numerous studies have pointed out that most people do not have the habit of taking in sufficient amounts of protein, yet a significant number of them, as in the US, take in much more protein than recommended. Be that as it may, it is important to divide protein sources into three crucial categories, so that people can have a deeper insight into its relevance and the reasons why our body cannot function without it. Furthermore, it is good to keep in mind that proteins need to be carefully consumed and their input well organized and planned in advance.
Group #1- COMPLETE PROTEINS
Complete proteins are widely known as high-quality proteins. It is these high-quality proteins that are the main and the most significant provider of amino acids, protein segments vital to our body. Much of the animal-based food, e.g. milk, cheese, other dairy products, eggs, poultry and pork, can be abundant sources of this nutrient.
Group #2- INCOMPLETE AND COMPLEMENTARY PROTEINS
The term ‘incomplete protein sources’ refers to the absence of one, or perhaps more, amino acids in various types of foods. Some such examples are fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
On the other hand, the term ‘complementary proteins’ are actually two or more incomplete protein sources which contain the ideal dose of protein for one’s body when they are mixed together. For instance, peas and dry beans are rich in these amino acids and contain a significantly high level of protein. In addition, when peas and dry beans are prepared or eaten in combination with rice, which is low in amino acids, they will offer your organism a completely sufficient amount of protein, and thereby amino acids.
Group #3- SOY PROTEIN
Soy beans and soybean-based foods are a great example that protein can be taken in from foods other than meat and various other animal products. The best representatives of this category are tofu and soy milk. The reason why soy proteins are so important is that they are heart-healthy, meaning that they have very little or no saturated fat, but are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and polyunsaturated fat. For these reasons, tofu and other soy products are often consumed by vegetarians. However, even these healthy foods should be moderately eaten. The recommended amount by nutritionists is 2 to 4 servings during a single week.
If we talk about protein in terms of specific food choices, here are several protein sources that will surely boost your protein level:
EGGS - Some nutritionists name eggs as the world’s number one provider of protein, which is not by accident. One egg is abundant in every single one of the 9 amino acids which protein is created from. Not only are they an amazing source of protein, but of other vital nutrients as well. Statistically, 6.29 g of protein can be found in a large egg weighing 50 g.
PEANUT BUTTER - Peanut butter is commonly eaten as a part of a snack, smeared onto a slice of whole-grain bread or a cracker. That way, 4 g of protein is spread by a single tablespoon. Also, it is quite tasty and will appeal to your children.
RED MEAT – Often recommended in high-protein diets, red meat comprises protein of high quality. It seems that the amount of protein depends on the piece of meat you choose to have for a meal. A great example of an extremely abundant source of protein is broiled porterhouse steak, a cut of which contains 38 g of protein in 6 oz of meat.
ALMONDS - Deceivingly small pieces of almonds are rather powerful, for two reasons. Firstly, they are heart-healthy, because they will provide your body with mono-unsaturated fat which decreases cholesterol levels. And secondly, 23 consumed kernels of almonds will feed your organism with 6 g of protein.