Protein is the building block of life. It helps to build muscle and tendons, repair the muscles in need of it and regulate hormones. Meats, white fish, shellfish, eggs, beans and nuts are common examples of foods that contain significant amounts of protein.
It is probably a safe bet, to say that many of us don’t eat enough protein but do eat too many carbs. We place our body through a lot of stress and trauma – every time we exercise or use a muscle we form tiny rips and tears in our muscles and need protein to repair them as quickly & efficiently as possible. Everybody is different in terms of how much protein their body can utilize after digestion and our body can only digest a certain amount of protein, anything surplus to requirements is dumped out, so it is best to have our protein with each and every meal. Less more often is the key. Body builders and most athletes take on smaller meals but a lot more often, and the focus of theses meals are proteins. Our body wants to be in it’s optimum form and condition, so we have to allow it to be by giving it the right tools for the job. Protein also takes much longer for the body to digest and so sits in the stomach for longer, preventing the feeling of hunger for longer. If you’re the kind of person that has a slow metabolism, then think of it as a muscle that needs to be trained. If you work hard on increasing your metabolism’s ability to digest food and process the nutrients quicker by eating smaller amounts more often, lots of water with every meal, then it will speed up.
I am a runner – before every run I drink at least a pint of milk (skimmed of course!) and immediately after every run I drink another pint of milk. I do this so my body has the protein already in place to begin the repair process the instant it’s required. This provides me with about 16 g of protein per pint of milk.
Another alternative and the next step up from milk would be to drink protein shakes instead of milk. With a shake you could get up to 50g per serving.